After a long, long wait, I finally received my prize last week (in the form of coupons not a giant crate of eggs, in case you're wondering). I was all flustered at first because the idea of being able to make all sorts of egg recipes without having to worry about how to afford the next dozen was just too good to be true! I settled on a new baked egg variation and did what I always do to get some inspiration: I poked around my kitchen to see what else I could throw into my little ramekins. Ham - check! Asparagus spears - check! I was about to get cookin' when I saw those two perfect tomatoes I still hadn't sunk my teeth into. They were so perfectly shaped and round and large, that it seemed almost criminal not to use them as my "ramekins" this time. And so my tomato cups were born.
This combo is simple yet so very tasty, and the recipe is ridiculously easy to prepare. I used plain ol' deli ham and some thawed asparagus spears from Trader Joe's because the good fresh ones have gotten expensive again (meh). The only thing that will take some caution and care is removing the flesh & seeds from the inside of the tomato without ruining the outer part. The best way to do this is to cut just a very small part off the tomato top (resist cutting it in half as you'll lose most of your cup's shape this way) and scoop out the insides gently. Other than that and a little bit of chopping, this practically cooks itself! It's another great way to enjoy eggs, and even with the way the skin "tears" with the heat of the oven (don't worry, this is normal!) it's makes for a lovely & unique presentation, so it would be great to serve to guests for Sunday brunch. Served with some warm crusty bread to sop up the yolk & you have a fabulous little meal for very little moolah!
Baked Eggs, Ham & Asparagus in Tomato Cups (serves 1; total cost per serving: $1.75)
1 large tomato
1 large egg
2 T diced ham (cubes should be about 1/4" in size)
2 T chopped asparagus (also 1/4" in size)
Pinch of salt
Preheat oven to 425°. Lightly coat the bottom of a small baking dish with cooking spray and set aside. Cut off the top of the tomato and gently scoop out the flesh and seeds (don't toss it! You can use this to make a light salsa later). Sprinkle the inside of the tomato cup with a small pinch of salt and add the diced ham and asparagus. Crack the egg into the tomato and carefully place the filled tomato into the prepared baking dish. Bake for 20 minutes or so (longer if you like a harder yolk). Remove from heat and carefully transfer to a serving plate with a wide spatula or slotted cooking spoon. Serve with extra asparagus spears and a nice chunk of warm crusty bread, and enjoy!