This baked-egg dish from Sóller, Spain, is entirely unique and takes pride of place on every café and bar menu.
- 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1 garlic clove, smashed
- 1 carrot, finely diced
- 1 celery stalk, finely diced
- 1 leek, white part only, finely chopped
- 80 ml (2½ fl oz/⅓ cup) dry white wine or dry sherry
- 300 ml (10 fl oz) chicken or vegetable stock
- 500 g (1 lb 2 oz) frozen peas
- sea salt flakes and white pepper
- 4 thick slices sobrassada
- 8 free-range eggs
- crusty bread, to serve
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F) fan-forced.
- Heat the oil and garlic in a frying pan over medium heat. Add the carrot, celery and leek and cook for 10 minutes or until the vegetables are just beginning to colour and soften. Splash the wine into the pan and simmer until the liquid evaporates, then pour in the stock and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Stir all but 50 g (1¾ oz) of the peas into the pan and cook for 1 minute. Remove from the heat and season to taste with salt and white pepper. Transfer the mixture to a blender and blend to a smooth purée.
- Pass the pea purée through a fine sieve into a bowl, then transfer the bowl to an ice bath, stirring to release the heat (this helps to maintain the green colour).
- Place the sobrassada along one side of a large pie dish (or two smaller dishes) and spoon in enough purée to just cover the base of the rest of the dish. Crack the eggs on top of the pea purée and sprinkle over the remaining peas. Cover with a lid or foil and bake for 6–8 minutes for a soft yolk or 10 minutes if you prefer your eggs well done.
- Meanwhile, reheat the remaining purée. Spoon the purée over the baked eggs, sprinkle with a little more pepper and serve with a big chunk of crusty bread on the side.
Recipes and images from Islas: Food of the Spanish Islands by Emma Warren, Smith Street Books, RRP $49.99