This is an easy and impressive dish if you prepare all your ingredients ahead and save making the eggs till the end.
I saw these clouds while surfing for egg dishes and meringues last week. Then I discovered that Rachael Ray herself had copied my take on this idea (haha).
Although most people might like to serve egg clouds for breakfast, my spin involves crowning a lunch-time salad with them. Go easy on the vinegar in the salad dressing, as you don’t want to overpower the egg with too much sour.
You can flavor the egg whites any way you want. Just make sure you whip the whites into a stiff meringue before you add your seasonings. Kids might like a creamier grated cheese, like cheddar or mozzarella. I did like the distinctive taste of Parmesan, though.
Check out Vinny’s post on meringues last week if you want some good ideas for separating eggs easily. Don’t be put off, even if you have little fingers. It’s as easy as one two three… four!
Heavenly egg salads
Increase the quantities proportionally as needed
- 2 eggs, brought to room temperature in a bowl of warm water for 5 minutes before cracking them
- 4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
- 1 or 2 tablespoons finely chopped green onion, peppers, chives, or bacon bits (all optional)
- 2 cups washed baby spinach
- 10 tiny tomatoes, cut in half
- 2 tablespoons olive or nut oil
- 1-2 teaspoons balsamic vinegar
- a few shakes of salt and pepper, to taste
- Set the oven to “Bake” at 450F.
- Line a cookie sheet with parchment or a silicone baking pad.
- Separate the eggs, putting all the whites into one mixing bowl, and each yolk into a separate cup.
- Prepare two plates by dividing the spinach evenly and topping with tomato halves.
- Put the oil, vinegar, salt and pepper into a small glass bottle with lid and shake madly. Pour half on each salad.
- Whip the egg whites until the bubbles disappear and you get sturdy glossy peaks – just like you are making meringue. This takes a good 2-3 minutes with a hand mixer.
- With a slotted spoon or spatula, gently fold the grated Parmesan and chopped garnishes, if using, into the whites.
- Divide the whipped egg white into two fluffy circles on your baking sheet. Make a dent in the center of each cloud.
- Pop them in a hot oven (450F). Set the timer for 3 minutes.
- After 3 minutes, slide the baking sheet out of the oven and carefully place an egg yolk into each of the dents in the clouds. Back into the oven for another 3 minutes. Use the timer if you want to make sure you have runny yolks set to perfection.
- Use a metal spatula to lift the eggs from the baking sheet. I needed to loosen the edges all the way around the clouds before I could get the spatula to slide underneath without breaking the yolk. Put an egg cloud on top of each salad and serve with a flourish.
Serve your heavenly eggs on buttered toast or with pancakes you’ve kept warm in the oven.