Stalking the Waiter

Riffing on foods, flavors and methods, that would be telling.

Tuesday, November 29, 2005

EoMEoTE - well, sort of

So far, the parameters of the EomEoTE events have always been outside my interest or capabilities. Since the same is true this month, I'm doing a pseudo-EoMEoTE for my own entertainment.
Do you remember those One-Eyed Susan breakfasts? The ones where you cut a circle in the middle of a slice of bread, butter it on both sides, pop it in a sauté pan over medium heat, and crack an egg so that the yolk fits in the hole??? I do, with great fondness. I still make them on occasion.

And another thing I haven't had in a while but that I used to love was either zucchini or eggplant fritters, the way Bertha Woodward used to make them. Well, she only did zucchini, but the same techniques/ingredients apply for eggplant. Those were yummy, too. But picture one of those fritters, with a hole in it's middle, just about finished cooking, then you break your egg so the yolk fits in the hole. By the time the fritter is finished, the egg is ready.
The basic procedure for the fritters is:

  1. Peel and slice the eggplant, cutting a hole in the middle of each slice about 1" across, salt and let set in a collander for 30 minutes to an hour. This will sweat out some of the bitterness and excess moisture - that technique is called degorgé.

  2. Set out three plates, one each with flour mixed with a little S&P, beaten egg, and grated or shredded Parmesan.

  3. Dip the slices in flour, shaking off the excess, then in egg, ditto, and, finally, in the cheese, pressing it into the coating.

  4. In a sauté pan, heat about a half inch of oil (I like peanut) until it shimmers. Add the coated slices of eggplant..

  5. After about three minutes, crack an egg over each slice, so the yolk ends up in the middle. Give it a minute for the egg to set, then turn carefully, so you don't dislodge the cheese or lose the egg yolk.

  6. When the egg is cooked to your taste and the fritter fork tender, you're ready to remove them to a papertowel-lined plate or cookie sheet.

Of course, these would be great, as is, with some sausage and toast, but think how it would taste served over either a nice cheesy polenta/grits or a kind of giant crostini - thick slice of crusty bread, toasted. Yum.
Tomato sauce would go nicely with the polenta/grits. With the toast, you could go pseudo-Eggs Benedict with a Greek, Moussaka-ish twist, and use an Avgolemono Sauce.
I'm sure you can think of other options.
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