I want to talk about grocery shopping. I’m sure it’s no surprise to anyone that I love to grocery shop. A full run typically includes three different stores, and fortunately there’s a fourth right across the street— you know, for emergencies. The whole process really does wonders for my OCD— making a list, crossing it off, going home and Marie Kondo-ing the fridge and pantry— ah, happiness.
About the fridge and pantry though… The storage situation is definitely… a situation. I inevitably wind up with duplicates in my pantry and anywhere from 12-27 varieties of canned and dried beans on hand at any given time. And to be honest, I sometimes have to write down what’s in my fridge so that I don’t forget to use it, because I sure as hell can’t see it. But then a few days go by, AND I DON’T KNOW WHAT HAPPENS. What started as a pre-Thanksgiving level quantity of food is all of the sudden half a jar of pickles, some hot sauce and shredded cheese. THERE IS NO IN BETWEEN.
So the other day, when dangerously close to the pickles-hot sauce-cheese situation, I was scrounging for vegetables to make a salad for two. Some asparagus-that-I-maybe-forgot-about was lingering in the bottom of the crisper drawer along with literally nothing that would make sense with asparagus, unless you like asparagus with pickles, that is. After wracking my brain for a while, determined to put off a full shop just a little longer, I settled on a classic: asparagus and eggs. I have no idea how it came to be, but asparagus with poached eggs has been a brunch classic and waspy lunch staple for as long as I can remember, and frankly, it just works. In an effort to kick things up a notch, I topped the combo with a briny caper-dijon vinaigrette and garlicky breadcrumbs. And in an effort not to poach eggs (because who ever wants to poach eggs?), I didn’t, and opted for seven-minute jammy eggs instead. I have to say the result was delicious, and I might have sopped up any extra dressing with a crispy baguette. Strongly suggest serving with a crispy baguette.
- 1 bunch asparagus
- 2-4 eggs (cold from the refrigerator)
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 tablespoons seasoned Panko breadcrumbs
- pinch garlic powder
- scant 1 tablespoon dijon mustard
- 2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar
- 1 tablespoon capers, roughly chopped
- freshly cracked ground pepper
- 1½ tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Toast the breadcrumbs. Melt the butter in a large sauté pan over medium heat. Add the garlic powder, breadcrumbs and a pinch of salt. Cook, stirring frequently, until the breadcrumbs are golden brown and fragrant. Remove from the pan and set aside.
Make the vinaigrette by combining the mustard, vinegar, capers, lots of black pepper and olive oil in a small bowl. Whisk well until emulsified. Set aside.
Next, cook the eggs. In a medium sauce pan, bring about two inches of water to a boil. Carefully place the cold eggs in the water and boil, uncovered, for exactly seven minutes.
Meanwhile, use your original sauté pan to cook the asparagus in about an inch of water. Cover over high heat just until the water boils, about five minutes. Remove the lid, and check for doneness with a fork. The asparagus should still be quite firm, but bright green. Drain and transfer to a serving platter.
Once the eggs are done, remove them from the pot and peel under cold water. Slice each one in half, lengthwise, and add to the platter. Drizzle the dressing over the asparagus and eggs. Top with breadcrumbs. Serve immediately.