One-Pot Wonders: Baked Eggs in Avocado Cups With Feta and Mint
Whoever first thought of cracking an egg into the center of a halved avocado and baking it is a genius in my book. This recipe, which features the egg-avocado creation set atop naan bread with feta and mint, is one of the most simple I've ever created for Serious Eats, and it may just be one of my favorites, too.
I love avocados in just about every form (except when fried—I just don't get the appeal). And putting an egg with a runny yolk on top of anything, no matter how clichéd the trick may be, is one of the best ways to create an instantly indulgent, perfectly textured sauce. It practically goes without saying that the two make for one happy marriage.
In most of the baked avocado recipes that I've seen, they're left in the skin and served that way. This makes it a bit of a nuisance to eat, since you have to either scoop out the egg and avocado flesh and then attempt to spread it on toast, or you have to hold it in your hands as you try to eat it out of the skin. If you're anything like me, that means you're pretty much guaranteed to be covered in egg yolk and avocado by the time you're done. To solve this particular challenge, I decided to scoop the avocado out of the skin before setting the egg in it and baking. That way, you can serve the whole thing directly on the naan and cut right into it; anything that spills out is immediately soaked up by the bread beneath.
The recipe itself is straightforward: First, the naan is lightly oiled on both sides and arranged on a baking sheet. Then the avocado halves are set on top and drizzled with oil, cumin, chili flakes, and pepitas. Finally, the eggs are slipped into the avocado halves and the whole thing is baked until the whites are just set and the yolks still runny (kind of like eggs en cocotte, with the avocado acting as the small cooking vessel)
There are a few tips to remember to ensure that this simple recipe remains, well, simple. First, there are very few occasions when you want an avocado that's still a little bit firm, but this is one of them, since the avocado will soften as it bakes. Second, when arranging the avocados on the naan, be careful to keep them level, because uneven ones may allow the eggs to slip out, leading to shouts of "Man down! Man down," which may have happened once in my kitchen...
Lastly, keep in mind that all avocados are not created equal, some with larger pits and some with smaller ones. To avoid the egg overflowing from a too-shallow pit hole, use a spoon to scoop out a little bit of the flesh to create a deeper recess. You don't have to retain every last drop of white (any white that spills over will set on the bread, so there's no need to worry about that), but you do want to make sure that the yolk stays put.
For a recipe with almost no prep work that comes together in less than 20 minutes, this is one that I will be making over and over again.