Tag: poached eggs

Turkish eggs

I  have been worrying a bit recently that the book of this blog, The Bad Cook (which is out TODAY, purchasable here)*, is going to be a disappointment.

This hadn’t crossed my mind until very recently – until recently I had always flicked through it sniggering to myself and going “This is great!!! Definitely worth £1.99.” But now I’m not so sure.

“Does it represent value to my readers?” I think as I sit with a cookbook on my lap, staring out of the window and trying not to pick at my cuticles because it drives my husband nuts.

So I have decided today to alert you to a recipe, which I would pay someone £1.99 to tell me about, which will assuage my feelings of fraudulence.

It is for a turkish eggs thing that Peter Gordon does at his restaurant brasserie cafe thing Les Providores in Marylebone High Street. It is NOT in fusion (sic), which is his cookbook, so I had to source the recipe off a New Zealand website, convert all the measurements, try it out and photograph it.

I’m sure that’s worth £1.99.

So these turkish eggs are poached eggs with yoghurt and a chilli butter. I understand if you think that yoghurt and eggs together sounds gross but I promise it isn’t. This is an incredibly delicious, almost addictive taste and it is very easy to put together for a light supper for you and someone you love. Or just for you alone.

Do not worry if you aren’t brilliant at poaching eggs – I am absolutely hopeless and mine came out just about okay.

So here we go – turkish eggs for 2

2 eggs – the fresher they are, the easier they will be to poach
200g greek yoghurt
1 tbsp olive oil
large pinch of chilli flakes
70g butter
some chopped parsley if you have it

NB – you will notice that there is no salt specified in this recipe. It is not an accident. You can, of course, add as much salt and pepper as you think this needs but personally, I think the lack of salt, the slight blandness, is a really important aspect to this – I don’t think the flavours need it. But you must do whatever you like.

1 In a bowl whisk together the yoghurt and olive oil. It is this whisking and whipping of the yoghurt that makes it so delicious, in my view. You CAN add here a small scraping of crushed garlic, but I don’t think it’s neccessary.

2 In a small pan melt the butter gently until it takes on a very pale brown colour – this takes about 10 mins over a low heat. Don’t be tempted to razz it hot otherwise it will burn. Once it looks to you like it has taken on some colour, add the chilli flakes and swirl around in the butter. Put to one side.

3 Now poach your eggs in some simmering water for 3-4 mins. If you add 100ml white vinegar to the water it should in theory help the process.

4 To assemble, divide the yoghurt between two bowls, then drop an egg on top, pour over the chilli butter and scatter with parsley.

We ate this with toasted sourdough, as they do in Les Providores, but I think this would also be terrific with any sort of flatbread or pitta.

* for Amazon refuseniks the book is also available from other sources:

iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/gb/book/bad-cook/id580194993?mt=11

Amazon US: http://www.amazon.com/Bad-Cook-ebook/dp/B00ALKTWYY/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1363857002&sr=8-1&keywords=esther+walker+bad+cook

Google: https://play.google.com/store/books/details/Esther_Walker_Bad_Cook?id=wGTySqj1u-wC&feature=search_result#?t=W251bGwsMSwxLDEsImJvb2std0dUeVNxajF1LXdDIl0.

THANK you if you bought it. You don’t have to read it, I promise I won’t corner you and ask you what you thought next time I see you.

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Lemon Bars for a Lasting Mother’s Day Impression

Mother’s Day is coming up, and since so many of you brave
souls will be attempting a celebratory brunch, I thought I’d post this
much-requested lemon bars recipe, in case things don’t go as smoothly as anticipated. 

Preparing brunch can be tricky anytime, let alone under mom’s watchful (aka
“extremely concerned”) eyes. Can someone please get her a mimosa and walk her
into the garden?

So, even if a few poached eggs break, or the toast gets a
little too golden-black, no worries! If you finish the meal with these
gorgeous, and absolutely impossible to mess-up lemon bars, she’ll be as proud
as she will be impressed. Our moms may have taught us the importance of a good first
impression, but its America’s restaurateurs who discovered the importance of a
delicious last impression. There’s nothing like a well made pastry to
make one forgive a tough steak.

Other than a baking dish, there’s no special equipment or
techniques required. Both the shortbread base and the lemon custard take only
minutes, and are simply hand-mixed in a bowl. 

Basically, if you can move your arm
in a circle, and effectively set a timer (there’s one on your phone), your
lemon bars should look just as good as these (maybe better – see meringue note
below). Anyway, whether you’re going to make these for Mother’s Day or not, I
hope you give them a try soon. Enjoy!

Ingredients for 16 Small Lemon Bars:

For the shortbread crust:
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup room temp unsalted butter (1 stick)
1/4 cup powdered sugar
1/4 tsp vanilla
1/4 tsp salt
Bake crust at 350 degrees F. for 22 minutes

For the lemon layer:
2 large whole eggs
1 large egg yolk
1 cup white sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 tbsp grated lemon peel
Bake at 350 degrees F. for 25 minutes
Garnish with powdered sugar; or top with *meringue (the extra
egg white whipped with 1 tablespoon of sugar) and brown with torch.

*My Meringue
If you decide to turn these into lemon meringue bars, do yourself a favor and actually measure the sugar. I couldn’t be bothered to check a recipe, so I only tossed in a teaspoon of sugar, and it should be closer to a tablespoon. The technique is the same; beat the extra white to the ribbon stage (where drips of white stay on the surface for a few seconds), and then add the sugar and continue whipping until you have nice, glossy peaks. My “by eye” batch worked fine, but it was a little too dry, and not quite sticky enough. Be advised.

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Mother’s Day breakfast ideas

It’s the one time of year when the kids and your other half actually want to get in the kitchen, so you’d better make the most of it and start the day with a lovely breakfast. Now we’re not suggesting that they should be in the kitchen for hours creating a gourmet breakfast, but a nice, simple treat is sometimes the best way to start the day.

We’ve got some easy ideas for Mother’s Day breakfast right here, as well as a speedy decoration that will make any breakfast seem that little bit more special.


Mother’s Day breakfast in bed tray decoration

Simply print off this pretty tray cover onto 2 A4 sheets, stick together down the middle and lay (or stick) onto your tray. It will undoubtedly get a little dirty, but you can just scrunch it up and throw it away after! A single flower in a glass/small vase and some freshly-squeezed orange juice will frame your breakfast perfectly. Download your Mother’s Day breakfast in bed decoration here



One of the most obvious ingredients to turn to is eggs. There are plenty of easy ways to cook them in minutes and they can be turned into a special breakfast quite easily.

Soft boiled eggs

Traditionally served with bread soldiers, they can be replaced with a variety of different dipping ingredients. Asparagus, carrots and cucumbers would give the dish a lovely fresh taste and leave mum with plenty of room left over for the rest of her Mother’s Day treats.  

Poached eggs

A little fiddly to get right, poached eggs always make a meal that little bit posher. Once you’ve perfected them (our how to make a poached egg video should help you there), use it to top a simple slice of toast with avocado or combine with Hollandaise sauce on its own for eggs Benedict or with smoked salmon (eggs Royale) or spinach (eggs Florentine).

Scrambled egg

Ready in minutes, a fresh batch of scrambled eggs is a light choice for breakfast in bed. Serve with chopped smoked salmon or crushed avocado and a squeeze of lemon for a fresh twist.

French toast

Eggs are also the primary ingredient for turning a piece of bread into delicious French toast. Beat the eggs and add some cinnamon, dip the bread in and shallow fry, you can even add other ingredients/flavours such as orange or cocoa powder or top with bacon and maple syrup. So tasty and so easy.



Think weekend breakfast has to be a fry-up? You can make mum’s a little
bit fancier by substituting a few of the standard ingredients. 

Poached egg instead of fried and slow-roasted tomatoes instead of grilled instantly lifts the meal. Bacon and sausages can be swapped for pancetta and chorizo and hearty bread from the bakery will make a big difference.



All you need is a little flour, egg and milk to make a fresh stack of pancakes – they really are that simple.

Add fruit, such as blueberries to the batter, or top with crispy bacon and maple syrup to turn them into a breakfast treat. 



If your mum is a bit of a cereal nut then she should, of course, have her favourite on Mother’s Day. 

You needn’t just pour some out of the box though, homemade granola or muesli with big chunks of fresh fruit and nuts is the perfect treat.





The smell will be heavenly to wake up to on a Sunday morning and a batch of warm muffins will also please almost any mum. Blueberry, raspberry, banana – even chocolate muffins for breakfast is always a pleasure.



A freshly-made croissant or pain au chocolate will take a little while to make, but it will be more than worth it. A Danish pastry made with ready-made puff pastry and flavoured with a cinnamon swirl or vanilla custard is a naughty way to start the day – but it’s only once a year, right?


Fruit salad

Light, fresh and zingy, a bowl of fruit salad is a light start to the day – it’s also great to make with the kids.

Chop up the fruit for them and arrange some juices and flavours and let them construct their own masterpiece. They could even blend their fruit salad down into a smoothie with a little milk and honey.


Where to next? 

More breakfast ideas

Mother’s Day cakes and bakes 

Mother’s Day biscuits 

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