Baked Eggs with Cauliflower and Tomatoes

Baked Eggs with Cauliflower and TomatoesNow that my marathon training is in full force, Saturday brunches after my long runs have become a regular thing. And I love it. There’s seriously nothing better than coming back from a 13 mile run to a delicious brunch and some mimosas on the deck.

Matt and I have been making a list of things we want to make for our upcoming Saturday brunches, most of which can be almost completely prepared the night before. One of these ideas stemmed from a pasta dish we made from Marco Canora’s book Salt to Taste last year. It was a baked pasta dish with a tomato and cauliflower sauce topped with cheese and breadcrumbs. At the time, we were both stunned by what a delicious preparation of cauliflower it was. Cooking it down with tomatoes and a sofrito made it super sweet and flavorful. We took this same idea, but used the cauliflower and tomato mixture as a base for baked eggs. To make it easy to throw together on Saturday, we made the sauce the night before and simply reheated it before baking it with the eggs.

I might like this preparation even more than the original because it lets the cauliflower really shine. And, for a dish made of mostly vegetables, it is surprisingly hearty. A good baguette rounded out the meal and was great for sopping up the tomato sauce. I have a feeling we’ll be repeating this brunch in the very near future.

Baked Eggs with Cauliflower and Tomatoes

Sauce adapted from Rigatoni with Cauliflower, Pecorino, Hot Pepper, and Bread Crumbs from Marco Canora’s Salt to Taste

Baked Eggs with Cauliflower and Tomatoes

Ingredients (serves 2)

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 cup onion, minced
  • 1/4 cup carrot, minced
  • 1/4 cup celery, minced
  • 3 garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • 1 large head of cauliflower, broken into small florets
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Large pinch of minced peperoncini or red pepper flakes
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 4 eggs
  • Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
  • Basil, cut into a chiffonade


Heat the oil over medium-high heat in a large pot. Add the onion, carrot, celery, and garlic. Cook the vegetables, stiffing often, until they are soft (about 10 minutes).

Add the cauliflower and mix thoroughly. Season with salt, pepper, and chili flakes. Cook until the cauliflower begins to soften, about 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes to the pot, breaking them with your hands as you add them. Mix well and reduce the heat to low. Simmer for about 10 minutes, or until the cauliflower is tender and begins to break apart. Check for seasoning and transfer to a cast iron or other oven-proof shallow pan.

With a large spoon, make four evenly spaced shallow indents on top of the cauliflower. Crack an egg into each one and cover everything with a little bit of parmesan cheese. Transfer to a 375°F oven and cook for about 12 minutes, or until the white are set and the yolks are still soft. One trick Matt came up with is to lightly break the whites apart with a fork halfway through cooking to make sure the whites get cooked through before the yolks get overcooked. It worked like a charm!

Baked Eggs with Cauliflower and Tomatoes

Top the finished dish with the basil and serve with bread and extra cheese.

Baked Eggs with Cauliflower and Tomatoes

And dig in.

Baked Eggs with Cauliflower and Tomatoes

Do you cook brunch at home? What are your favorite brunch foods to cook?

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