Vegetable Egg Nests
July 7, 2011

I often get sick of repetitively similar or plain meals, with the exception of a very few favorites, so I'm always looking for new styles or new constructions of food, not just new flavors. This is partly the reason why I cook for myself, because of the infinite number of dishes I can access- if I wanted to put forth the effort, I would never have to eat the same thing twice. This presentation feels like a change of pace, though it's actually quite close to a favorite American breakfast- eggs with hash browns. The additional vegetables, along with allotting only one egg per person, make this also a very wholesome breakfast. The vegetable pancakes come out smelling wonderfully toasted, crunchy on the outside and soft on the inside. The soft rich eggs go well with their crispy texture and their both sweet and savory flavor.

This recipe is only very mildly adapted from the original, there was no need or possibility to lighten this dish. I left out the fresh thyme because I find it to be a very strong flavor for breakfast and because this is a fresh nice dish and it doesn't need any brightening, but I added green onion for more savory flavor. This recipe is fairly difficult, not because of the pancakes- the only secret to cooking them is to make sure the oil is good and hot and to not fuss with them too much until they're ready to flip. The real difficulty lies in baking the eggs, because if they are overcooked they become rubbery and inedible. You have to stand by the oven and constantly check on the firmness of the egg whites. The upside is that all of the pancakes are ready at once and all will be hot when served. If you are nervous to try baking they eggs, the best option is to make four sunny-side up eggs in a pan, and place them in the indentation of the pancakes after frying- this is also good option if you do not want to use your oven.

The vegetables used in the pancakes could be altered; they could be make with all potatoes, or with no carrots, et cetera. If the vegetables used are not as starchy, like the potato used here, more flour or more egg may be needed to hold the pancakes together. The original recipe called for the egg to be placed on one side of the pancake so that dressed spring greens could be placed on the other. This would work very nicely, along with any other topping you would want to add- salsa, sour cream, cheese, more green onion, et cetera. The pancake can also be formed into whatever shape you like by how you place the mixture in the pan and how you press it into a pancake. In this instance, I was going for a round shape with the egg in the middle, but mine accidentally came out rather like a dinosaur head.

Vegetable Egg Nests
Adapted from Better Homes and Gardens

Nonstick Cooking Spray
1 medium Green Zucchini, shredded (about 1-14 cups)
1 12 pounds Potatoes, and shredded (about 4 cups)
1 large Carrot, shredded (about 1 cup)
1 Green Onion, sliced thinly
14 cup All-Purpose Flour
5 large Eggs
12 teaspoon Salt
14 teaspoon Ground Black Pepper
1 tablespoon Canola Oil

Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Coat two small baking sheets with nonstick cooking spray; set aside.

Place zucchini in kitchen towel and squeeze out excess liquid. In large bowl combine zucchini, potatoes, carrot, green onions, flour, one of the eggs, salt, and pepper. Stir to mix well.

In a large nonstick skillet, heat half of the oil over medium heat. To make each pancake, spoon about one cup (or 14th of the mixture) portion into the skillet. Carefully press and each pancake with back of spatula to form a pancake. Cook two pancakes at a time, 4 to 5 minutes each side or until golden brown, turning once. Press a small egg-sized depression into the middle of each pancake with a spoon after flipping. Transfer to prepared baking sheet. Repeat with remaining oil, heating well before adding vegetable mixture.

Pour one raw egg in the depression of each nest. Place pancakes with eggs in oven, being careful not to tilt baking sheet. Bake, uncovered, until as soon as the whites look set, around ten minutes. Take care to remove them as soon as the egg is mostly set, because eggs at this heat will become rubbery very quickly. Transfer pancakes to plates and serve immediately.

Calories*: 272 Fat*: 9 g Carbs*: 39 g Cholesterol*: 238 mg
Sugar*: 2 g Fiber*: 2 g Protein*: 4 g Servings*: 4 (1 Pancake Egg each)

Ease*: 6/10 Categories: Breakfast
Total Time*: 45 minutes Active Time*: 30 minutes
Kosher: Parve


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