It’s time to end my self-imposed exile. Summer was eventful. We traveled. We visited friends and family and friends and family visited us. We hosted several parties and attended a few. We ate good food at home and away. But now summer is over and it’s time to return to the rest of life.
If your summer garden is anything like mine, everything but the tomato plants have died of neglect. But, somehow, despite the almost vegicidal neglect, my tomato plants have not only grown they’ve thrived. In fact, they’ve thrived to the extent that it’s starting to become a problem: what to do with all those tomatoes?
This is one of our new favorite meals. It’s simple. It’s fast. It’s good. And it helps use up some tomatoes.
The first time I made this earlier this summer it instantly entered the rotation of frequently made dishes. It’s fast enough to be made after a late return home on a weeknight with a stop at a bakery for bread but it’s satisfying enough to make it more than worth the minimal level of effort. It becomes slightly more work to use fresh tomatoes but the taste makes it worthwhile.
Sometimes, with the plethora of ingredients available at easy reach, it’s hard to realize exactly how good something so simple can be. While I feel like I’m straining into hyperbole here, this is a truly satisfying meal in all its simplicity.
Uova in Purgatorio (Eggs in Purgatory)
1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 cup diced red onion
1 tbsp diced garlic
pinch of red pepper flakes
3 to 4 tomatoes, skinned and pureed or one 28 oz. can crushed tomatoes
4 to 6 eggs (depends on the size of the eggs)
- Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When hot, add the onion and a pinch of salt, and cook until the onion is soft, about 5 minutes.
- Add the garlic and the red pepper flakes and cook for a minute more.
- Add the pureed tomatoes, season with salt to taste, and bring to a simmer. Simmer until the tomato sauce thickens slightly, 15 to 20 minutes.
- Break the eggs into the tomato sauce. Season them with salt. Cover the skillet and poach the eggs in the tomato sauce 3 to 4 minutes, or until the whites are cooked through and the yolks are still runny.
- Serve with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano and crusty bread.