Ouefs en Meurette , literally meaning “eggs in meurette sauce” is a French Bungundian dish first introduced to me by one of my coworkers a couple of years ago, and that was the only time I had ever had it. This dish is not very seasonal, but it is flavorful. I remember loving the dish, and decided to try making it myself. Basically this dish is defined by poaching and egg and serving it with meurette sauce, which is a reduction of a bottle of red wine and some stock, seasoned with vegetables and herbs and mushrooms and bacon. I used this particular version from epicurious as my guide, and I think it was a success!
The first thing to figure out is how to poach an egg. I, for one, have never poached an egg before. I’ve scrambled, fried, hard boiled, etc., but never tried poaching. Poaching is supposedly a very healthy way to eat eggs because no fat is needed in the cooking, unlike frying. This recipe called for poaching in the red wine before using it to make the sauce. This made the poaching particularly difficult, because the egg disappeared in the wine! The wine liquid was so dark, I was poaching “blind”, since I couldn’t see the egg at all to look at its doneness. But I found the eggs, and didn’t break them, and they survived the entire experience
Sorry about the lack of measurements, not a whole lot of measuring went on today when I was cooking this.
eggs (however many you want to cook)
1 bottle dry red wine – because I’m a poor grad student, I used a Rosemount Merlot – $8
2 cups of stock (I used veg. stock cause that’s what I had on hand)
onion, carrot, celery, sliced
a bouquet of thyme, parsley, and bay leaf, or just some herbes de provence if you want to cheat (I cheated)
2 tbs veg. oil
handful of crimini mushrooms, sliced
2 oz. prosciutto, sliced – yes i know, not very French, but it was very good! Bacon is the traditional ingredient here
2 tbs flour (reg. or GF works fine) mashed into 2 tbs softened butter
2 tbs veg. oil
baguette slices – about 2 per person, I used 3 for plating the pic, and then ate all 3. You can really use any bread here, including any gluten free bread that you find or bake. It’s not critical.
1. Pour your wine and stock in a pan with a large surface area and heat to a simmer. You are going to poach the eggs first, even though with most recipes using poached eggs this is the last thing you do. That’s because this particular recipe has you poaching the eggs in the wine. That’s why my poached egg is purple.
2. When simmering, crack an egg into a small bowl and then quickly but gently pour the egg into the simmering liquid. This WikiHow tutorial is great if you are a bit nervous about the mechanics of poaching an egg. Give it about 3 min before taking it out. I actually gave it four, because I’m not really big on super runny eggs. So as you can see from the pic, mine is more done than that. This probably will shock and offend French food purists, because the perfect poached egg according to Perfect Poached Egg is “an egg poached just to the point where the white is no longer runny and the yolk is beginning to harden around the edges, encasing the lush, runny, flowing yolk.” Well, I did have a flowing yolk, so maybe I wasn’t that far off after all:
3. Set the eggs aside, and let the sauce reduce down to half. This is why you wanted to use a pot with a large surface area. Otherwise it will take FOREVER. This will become the meurette. While that is reducing, you can start on the rest.
4. In a small skillet, cook the mushrooms and prosciutto (or bacon) in some veg. oil for a few minutes. Then set aside.
5. Then, add more oil if necessary, and start doing the baguette slices. For this, just place them in the hot oil, and then flip after a minute or so. They will become crispy and yummy and no longer at all healthy for you. Then set these on a paper towel to absorb the excess oil, in a vain attempt to pretend you are being healthy about this.
6. Strain out all the veggies from your now reduced wine liquid. Stir in a little bit at a time your butter/flour mash, so that it dissolves and thickens the sauce. Then add in the mushrooms and prosciutto, and bring back to a boil one last time.
7. At this point have a small pot with some just barely simmering water ready, so you can drop your eggs in again quick so that they will be hot when served. Drop them in for 60s max. Just enough to heat them, that’s it. You don’t want to actually cook them more, but you don’t want to serve cold poached eggs either!
8. Assemble: Bread, then egg, then meurette. I garnished with some finely chopped parsley.
Leftover sauce can be used in pasta, to top roasted meats, I can think of many things I’m going to use it for…
This meal is probably most appropriately served as a brunch. I ate it for dinner