Monday, January 17, 2011

Garlic broth and poached eggs

This soup was originally called garlic soup with poached eggs.  But that sounds much more substantial than it actually is, so I decided to change the name.  It's very good for those days when you want to fill up on veggies  or bread but get something warm and protein-rich in your dinner (am I the only one who has those days?  Oh well).  In spite of the name, it is not super-garlicky, and won't leave you with really bad breath.  It's essentially just a broth in which you poach an egg.  A very nice broth, to be sure, but what I've gained from the recipe is more along the lines of a method, rather than a very distinct and irreplaceable broth.  For instance, if short on time I would consider making regular broth from a cube and then poaching an egg in it.  It wouldn't be as delicious, but it would still be good (as well as very cheap).

The egg just beginning to cook...

What's really nice about this recipe is that you can use however much you want at a time to make your soup fresh.  Just pour one serving's worth of broth into a pan and poach an egg in it (or however many servings you're making at the time), then store the rest in the refrigerator or even freezer for later use.


Garlic Broth with Poached Eggs
Adapted from The Wednesday Chef
3 servings

1 quart (4 cups) water
1/2 head of garlic, separated into cloves and peeled (not minced!)
1+ tsp. salt
Black pepper to taste
1/8 tsp. dried sage
1/8 tsp. dried thyme
1 small bay leaf
2 parsley sprigs (or a couple of teaspoons of dried parsley)
1 1/2 Tbs. olive oil
3 eggs
Grated parmesan cheese and parsley for garnish (optional)

In a saucepan combine garlic, salt, pepper, sage, thyme, bay leaf, parsley, and olive oil. Add water.  Bring to a boil over high heat, then reduce heat to low and simmer for 30 minutes.

Strain (I used my sifter; make sure it's fine, even cheesecloth), pressing on the garlic to release as much flavor as possible.

For immediate use: to make one serving, put 1 1/3 cups broth into a very small saucepan.  Bring to a simmer (small bubbles starting to show on the bottom) and carefully break an egg directly into the broth.  Poach until the egg white is just set, about 1 1/2 minutes (the egg will continue to cook).  With a slotted spoon, transfer the egg to the serving dish and pour the broth over it.  Garnish with parsley and parmesan cheese.

The rest of the broth can be used immediately, refrigerated, or frozen.  You could change up the ratios, adding more eggs per serving of soup; it's just a matter of personal preference.  You can also prepare multiple eggs in multiple servings of soup at the same time; just use a larger saucepan as you poach.  Enjoy!

In spite of my lack of obvious enthusiasm above, I really enjoyed the broth, and would encourage you to try it :)  Recipe for the carrots coming up soon!

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Did this recipe work for you? Tips, suggestions, or advice?