Eggs are not only delicious, but nutritious! Many consider eggs to be the “perfect food,” as they are high in protein and amino acids, rich with omega 3’s and nutrients such as Vitamin A, B (2, 5 and 12!), folate, phosphorus and selenium. While formerly charged with having too much cholesterol, in recent years this myth has been debunked. Kris Gunnars helps us understand the cholesterol – egg relationship. Yes, eggs do have cholesterol, but that doesn’t mean that they negatively affect blood cholesterol. Eggs contain healthy fats, which can lower your High Density Lipoprotein (HDL, or “good cholesterol”). Also, according to Ruxton et al., people with high HDL often have decreased risk of stroke and heart disease. Finally, eggs are satiating, which will prevent snacking and can facilitate weight loss!
Understandably, many people probably limit their egg consumption to breakfast, but eggs are more versatile than you may thing. I would like to share a few creative and fun ways to diversify and spice up your meals with eggs! Many of these I have come across while traveling abroad or from cooking with friends.
1. Egg baked into avocado
Slice an avocado in halves and crack an egg into each half. Season with salt, black pepper and cayenne pepper. Bake in a preheated oven (425 degrees) until entire egg is cooked through (around 15 minutes). Then, if you want to get a little more adventurous, sprinkle each avocado with chives, cheese or even bacon (or anything else that may suit your fancy!). This dish is great by itself or over a bed of greens for a creative way to get your veggies, protein, and healthy fats all in the same meal.
Take a small-rimmed glass and press a hole into the center of your favorite bread (if gluten-free, my favorite gf toast is one by Mariposa in Oakland!). Heat a skillet over medium-low heat and melt butter, ghee (clarified butter) or oil. Place the bread in the skillet and crack an egg onto it, so the yolk is the center of the hole. Cook for about 45 seconds to a minute, or until the egg is a bit solid on the bottom. Flip it over and add salt/pepper.
3. Fried egg on a salad
I started topping certain meals with a fried egg when I was in Argentina. I learned recipes that included eggs in soups, salads, and even on top of pasta dishes! This dish is as simple as it sounds, and can be done with any salad of your choice. I like to leave the yolk soft in this dish as well because then it adds to the salad dressing.
Shakshouka (a really fun to word to say!) is a dish that I first tried in Israel. It’s basically a one-skillet recipe of eggs baked in a tomato-red pepper sauce with paprika and cumin. First you make the sauce, then crack as many eggs as desired into the pan (leaving the yolk intact), and after about 4 minutes on medium-high heat, transfer the pan into the oven until the top of the egg is fully cooked.
5. Open-faced sandwich with fried egg on top
This can also be done with any type of sandwich, but one of my favorites includes avocado, pesto and roasted portobello mushroom with a fried egg on top. Yum!
These are just some of my personal favorites. If you want to get crazy in the kitchen, have a look at these other fun and delightful egg recipes (and yes, you will impress your friend, mother, lover, brother with these beautiful dishes!)