Because of this dish, I’ll probably get a few hits from freaky religious people searching for their paths or their Truth or whatever, but so be it. Eggs in purgatory are gooood.
Besides, I’ve recently been found by someone searching for “the ledge freaky weird stevie fans stevie nicks,” so I shouldn’t so much worry about the religious nuts, right?
Welcome freaky religious people!
Today’s What’s Cooking Wednesday is inspired by the fact that P brings me at least 5 eggs every day.
We have hens you know. Although we give most of the eggs away, there’s still an awful lot left over. And that allows one’s imagination to run wild with visions of different egg plates.
And someday I’ll show you the hens, I promise.
I remember my grandmother serving Eggs in Purgatory (which I’ve also seen called “uova fra diavolo“) as a quick, light lunch or dinner — kind of something you make when you don’t know what else to eat. But it could easily be an impressive looking appetizer for those who don’t know just how easy the recipe really is.
As far as I know, this dish comes from Naples — if The Sopranos Family Cookbook says so, it must be true. Actually though, I assume my grandmother got this one from her father’s side of the family, which was from a small village in the province of Salerno near Naples called Pisciotta. According to family lore, her father was also quite a cook, particularly with coniglio (rabbit).
If you already have leftover tomato sauce, by all means, just put that in a skillet and heat it up before breaking the eggs in. That makes this recipe *extremely* fast and easy.
For those who are doing this from scratch, though, I’ll include a recipe for sauce here, which happens to be a basic pizza sauce. The oregano is what makes this fabulous, IMHO.
Uova in Purgatorio/Eggs in Purgatory
(serves up to 4)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 clove garlic, finely chopped
- 1 can peeled tomatoes, passed through grinder, or coarsely chopped
- 1/4 teaspoon dried oregano
- Salt, black pepper, & peperoncino to taste
- 1-2 eggs per person (up to eight)
- Freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
1. Put the olive oil in a skillet large enough to hold the number of eggs you’ll be making.
2. Sauté the garlic until over medium heat but don’t let it burn.
3. Add the tomatoes, oregano, salt, pepper, and peperoncino and cook sauce for about 15 minutes or until it is thickened to your taste.
4. Once the sauce is ready, make little wells in the sauce and break in eggs one at a time. Grate a generous amount of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese directly on top.
5. Cover the skillet and let eggs cook until the yolks are to your desired runnyness (yes, that’s a word for the purposes of this recipe).
6. Serve immediately with crusty bread. Grate more cheese on top if you like ’em cheesy like I do!