Add your own flavourings, such as fresh herbs, caramelised onions, sautéed mushrooms, roasted root vegetables, cooked bacon, spring onions, blanched spinach or greens, diced fresh tomatoes, cooked peppers, aubergines or courgettes, leftover tomato pasta sauce, cubes of cheese, grated parmesan, paprika, chopped fresh red or green chilli or toasted cumin seeds. Family members can enjoy picking their own ingredients. Serve with a mountain of toast cut into soldiers.
Ingredients (serves 4)
About 200g to 300g per person of pick-and-mix ingredients (see above)
Butter for greasing
100g double cream
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. Preheat the oven to 200°C. You will need four 250ml ramekins and a deep-sided baking tray big enough to house the ramekins. You can line the baking tray with a tea towel to stop the ramekins from sliding about. Boil the kettle or have some very hot water to hand.
2. Grease the ramekins with a little butter and add your pick-and-mix ingredients. Crack an egg into each ramekin and season with salt and pepper. Divide the cream between the four ramekins.
3. Put the ramekins on the baking tray and add boiling water to the tray to come halfway up the side of the ramekins, taking care not to spill water into any ramekins.
4. Place the baking tray in the oven and bake until the egg whites are set. This can be anywhere between 8-12 minutes for a runny yolk or 12-16 minutes for a firm yolk. Serve immediately.
Image: Jason Ingram
Claire Thomson is a chef and food writer, and almost always in the kitchen.