Baked Eggs with Ricotta and Onions
I discovered this recipe for baked eggs with ricotta and onions on the Food52 website. It’s a bit similar to the Turkish eggs I made and loved, but then, not really. I think I was just excited to make another unique egg dish.
This is basically a casserole, with two layers of a ricotta, onions and breadcrumbs mixture, a middle layer of ham, plus eggs cooked on top. The recipe belongs to Jay Guerrero, the sous chef at Prune in New York, who is somewhat famous for his family meals. He calls this a breakfast dish, but it can also be enjoyed as a light lunch or dinner. Or brunch.
For some extra zing, I sprinkled the eggs with cayenne pepper flakes.
Baked Eggs with Ricotta and Onions
extra virgin olive oil
2 medium yellow onions, sliced thinly
1-2 sprigs fresh thyme
2 cups coarse breadcrumbs, big enough that they look like croutons
2 cups ricotta
1 cup whole milk or heavy cream
2 egg yolks
4-5 slices good quality ham (I diced the ham)
kosher salt, freshly ground pepper
Add chives and cayenne pepper flakes (optional)
Take a 9×13 pan or casserole dish and oil the inside with a little olive oil. Set aside and preheat your oven to 450° F.
In a big sauté pan, heat some olive oil until shimmering, and add the onions and thyme. Toss around a little bit until the onions are coated and turning translucent, about 2 minutes. Add the breadcrumbs and toast them with the onions for a few more minutes, until they start to turn golden. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and let cool as you prep the next step.
In a medium bowl, blend the ricotta with the milk/cream to loosen it up. Whisk in the two yolks until smooth. Add the breadcrumb/onion mixture.
Put half this mixture in the bottom of the pan. Put the ham down in a single layer over the breadcrumb/cheese mixture, and then top the layer of ham with the rest of the breadcrumb/cheese mixture.
Make six indents on top of the bed of ricotta, big enough that the yolks can settle into them comfortably. I a large spoon dipped in a little oil to make the indentations so as not to lose any batter. Crack your eggs into the indents and bake until the whites are done and the yolks are set to your likeness.
If using a metal sheet pan, start checking at 10 minutes, gently nudging the yolks and whites to see if they’re the consistency you like. This can be anywhere from 10-30 minutes, so be vigilant and keep checking, but it’ll likely be done before 20 minutes. For a ceramic casserole dish, do the same, but know that it might take 30 minutes in this case (still, keep checking). When you feel it’s ready, serve!
Whatever you do, don’t sit down, which is what I did. The eggs were probably 2 minutes too long in the oven for my liking. But the dish was still excellent.
For fun, I added some pickled onions. Chili onion crisp would also be good on this egg dish, as well as the chives I forgot!
My husband enjoyed the leftover baked eggs in tortillas, and made me promise I’d mention this.
Yummy! And I like your husband’s addition :)
Yes, but here in this part of the country we put just about everything in tortillas!!!
Eggs and ricotta are a perfect combination for me. This looks simple, but loaded with goodness and flavour too.
Really good flavors. I loved the onions with the thyme.
I love a dish like this that can easily serve as any meal of the day. Good advice to not sit down! It is sometimes hard to find that right moment with baked eggs where the whites are done but the yolks are not overcooked!
And why would I go sit down?! I know better!!!!
Sounds flavorful. Bet those flakes added some zip!
They did. And, I love zip!!!
This sounds heavenly, Mimi! Just add a mimosa. I’m good. 👍🏻
This egg dish was so different (to me) and so good. I just wish I hadn’t let the eggs cook so long. How many times do I make this mistake?!!!
Please pass on to your husband that I can totally envision this wonderful concoction in a tortilla! I may do that from the very first. :-)
Hahaha! He also used salsa, which to me doesn’t really go along with thyme, but he does that kind of thing quite often, and I just have to look away!
Glad hubby enjoyed the leftovers. This is perfect for brunch when you have time on your hands.
I know of husbands who refuse to eat leftovers. I think that would be cause for divorce.
You had me at the mention of Prune. A fabulous recipe and I totally agree with adding a little heat to it and eating the leftovers (if there are any) in a tortilla for lunch. Yummy!
We went to Prune before the pandemic, and it was very good. And this is a fabulous recipe!
Sounds like a great casserole – and who doesn’t love cheesy-egg dishes. I have a cup of ricotta in the fridge with no sense of purpose, so I think I will cut this in half-ish and we can have it for Sunday brunch tomorrow. We even have some tortillas, but I am pretty sure there will be no leftovers… :)
It was a lovely combination of flavors. Have you made Turkish eggs yet? It is life changing. You will be forever indebted to me….. and Nigella.
No, I haven’t made Turkish eggs yet. I will check out your recipe and remedy that as soon as possible! :)
You won’t regret it, I promise!
This is one hearty casserole to keep you going all morning long. Will have to give your hubby’s idea of putting it in a tortilla too. Delicious!
It was so tasty. Really an interesting recipe. I wouldn’t have thought to include chunks of bread.
This sounds as if it would be delicious! Ricotta adds a great element to baked dishes. As I’m sure you’ve noted, Prune closed at the start of the pandemic. Very sad to walk around Manhattan and see so many restaurants gone. https://www.nytimes.com/2020/04/23/magazine/closing-prune-restaurant-covid.html
Oh goodness, I hadn’t heard that. So sad for restaurants and small businesses everywhere. I’ll read that article, thanks!
Maybe Gabrielle should just become a writer! She’s incredible. Great article, thanks! You couldn’t pay me enough to own and run a restaurant, but thank goodness people do….
Wow… this looks absolutely incredible! What a delicious way to start the day… and fun ‘Breakfast for Dinner’ idea, too! :)
Exactly! Definitely an “any meal of the day” kind of dish!
i love baked eggs! i used to make them with cream and bacon or ham but they are no goes for us now so it’s eggs with evaporated milk and vegetables.
Well, that sounds good, too!
What a fun and tasty breakfast recipe for weekend company!!! Bill would especially love this combo!
It was very very good!!!!
What a beautiful combination of flavours and textures! I’d definitely enjoy this for the breakfast, lunch, and dinner. And maybe even as a brunch, too :)
I would, too. the addition of the coarse breadcrumbs was fascinating, but it worked!
A lovely one sheet pan meal 😋
It was very good, I must say!
What an interesting dish! I don’t think I’ve ever seen a baked egg dish quite like this — such a neat idea. This would be dinner for us. :-)
I know! Unique and delicious.
I love baked eggs and then you add onions–yes please!!!
Onions and thyme. And ricotta. A fabulous dish!
those eggs sound wonderful! My husband eats eggs every day, so I’m always looking for ways to switch it up!
This was exceptionally good, and it would work any time of year.
I have used ricotta in a scrambled egg recipe before – it’s a surprising (but fantastic!) addition. They are some of the best eggs I’ve ever had. Great recipe with the addition of onions, ham and breadcrumbs, too!
The onion and thyme really went well with the ricotta and eggs. All around a wonderful dish!!!
That looks really good with the bread