Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Baked Egg Cups with Asparagus and Kale

A few weeks ago, when the temperatures were still well into the freezing range, I was checking out the garden and thinking about my plan for planting this summer. I hadn’t paid much attention the raised bed of greens we planted last fall. It had been so hot that nothing grew so I just let it be.

That day I just happen to look down and see a bit of green. I thought – wow, that kind of looks like new growth. Turns out, it was. The kale from last fall came back this spring and it has loved the cooler temps!



Soon after the kale, came our first round of asparagus. The plants are two years old now so this year we’ve been able to harvest some for the dinner table. Three bunches so far.

I am loving this sign of new life. Lately, I’ve been a bit uninspired in the kitchen. I can’t seem to come up with any new ideas and at times I’ve felt a bit like not cooking at all.

That was until the green goodness starting showing up. Soon behind these are all the blooming strawberry and blackberry plants.

Armed with asparagus, kale and so far from the herb garden, thyme and chives, I decided to try and use up some of the eggs I got from a local homesteader and friend. Baked eggs seem to be popular this spring so I did my own twist on this tasty breakfast or brunch dish.



It turns out these are great for snacks and dinner too. They are full of greens and the herbs are definitely the shining star, or at least as much as they can be next to those bright orange, farm fresh egg yolks. It was only after making them that I realized everything I had added was either from our garden or a local producer except for the milk, salt and the butter I used to grease the muffin pan.

Baked Egg Cups with Asparagus and Kale

1 ½ cups kale, finely chopped
2/3 cup cheese, finely shredded (I used St. Jerome)
6 eggs
1/3 cup milk
2 tbsp fresh chives, chopped
2 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
1 tsp salt
8 1-inch pieces asparagus

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a muffin pan with butter or the oil of your choice. Divide the kale and cheese evenly between 8 cups.

In a bowl, whisk together the eggs and milk. Add the chives, thyme and salt. Pour the egg mixture into the muffin cups, dividing it evenly. Place a piece of asparagus on top of each cup.

Bake for 15 to 20 minutes or until the eggs are set in the center and slightly browned on the edges. Cool for 2 to 3 minutes, remove from the pan and serve. Makes 8.

17 comments:

lesley lifting life said...

These look delicious, Lori! How fun finding some unexpected veggies in the garden!

Amy Camenisch said...

Those look so yummy! Wish I could have one for my breakfast right now. Fresh, home-grown veggies are always the best!

Andrea (Off Her Cork) said...

I love egg cups and I love spring when asparagus is in season. Your egg cups are gorgeous Lori!

kat said...

What a great use of kale! I totally want to make these. I'm with you in the cooking doldrums right now. I think its the change of seasons.

5 Star Foodie said...

These look so scrumptious, so perfect for a nice brunch!

MelindaRD said...

That looks awesome. Very Spring! I am making a crustless quiche for dinner tomorrow and now I am thinking I need to give these little egg cups a try soon. So nice you can have a garden. We are moving soon and so decided against it since we would be here about 2 years. We are headed to Japan next, and due to housing situations, we will not have any land for a garden.

emily (a nutritionist eats) said...

I just made something very similar...but mine didn't have fresh veggies from the garden. :( A little jealous...

Joyce @friendsdriftinn said...

Fresh asparagus makes me so ready for a Kentucky Derby luncheon! I grilled some today for a quick snack.

Lori said...

Lesley - Thanks! I love it when things pop up and it's not weeds! :)

Amy - They are! Nothing tastes quite like them.

Andrea - Thanks! I'm loving the flavor of the young asparagus we're getting early.

kat - Yeah, you are probably right. That seems to be when it hits. Then and in the heat of summer.

5 Star - Thanks!

Melinda - Japan sounds exciting! Hopefully you will have plenty of fresh markets to go to there even if you can't have a garden. Can't wait to see your posts through the transition.

emily - I have no doubt they were just as good!

Joyce - Oh yes, it's perfect for that. Love Derby season!

Joanne said...

I think winter burnout gets to all of us eventually, but this spring produce is definitely inspiring! These baked egg cups are the perfect thing to pop and go on your way out the door in the morning!

My McDonald Meal said...

Congrats on your asparagus! I can't wait to get my garden started. Just if I can have a Friday or Saturday without rain! What else are you planting this year?

Fresh Local and Best said...

It's so impressive that these plants survive the frigid winters! Asparagus is particularly hard to grow because of the investment in time, but you are well rewarded for your patience. So great to see you harvest some. The baked egg cups look marvelous!

Peggy said...

What a pleasant surprise to find! I don't think anything has grown back from last year yet... I'm ready to start anew!

Vivienne said...

wow nothings quite like cooking using your own produce aye!! it makes eating the final product a little bit different knowing that you made it from 'scratch'! id love to grow some kale too!

Rebecca from Chow and Chatter said...

simple beautiful and how cool the greens came back would be a great bunch

Deb in Hawaii said...

What gorgeous egg cups Lori and how great most everything is from your garden, or locally produced. Those strawberries are stunning too. ;-)

Lori said...

Joanne - Our farmer's markets are just beginning to open around here so hope is alive! :)

Melissa - I'm trying to grow some thai chilis, scotch bonnet and thai eggplant from seed. Then we have some heirloom squash varieties, patty pan, cucumbers and pak choy. You?

FLB - It really is. I'm always amazed when things return in the spring.

Peggy - I'm as equally excited for all our new stuff as well!

Vivienne - Between growing our own and the Farmer's Markets I can't get enough of spring produce!

Rebecca and Deb - Thanks! The new spring veggies are inspiring!