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Eggs in Purgatory

The following recipe is from the October 21 edition of our weekly recipe newsletter. To receive this newsletter in your inbox, sign up here!

Eggs in Purgatory is a wonderful example of how dishes that are considered cucina povera don't have to taste particularly, well, poor. This recipe comes from The Southern Italian Table by Arthur Schwartz, and is a popular quick and cheap meal throughout Southern Italy. I haven't priced it out, but I'm pretty sure that this dish can easily and heartily feed four people for well under $5.

I was skeptical of this combination at first, wondering just how satisfying chopped tomatoes and eggs could be, but after the first bite I was a happy convert. I like to keep my eggs on the runny side so that when they break open the yolk imparts its creaminess into the tomato sauce. A few spoonfuls of ricotta are a nice addition to this dish, and if you happen to have any greens laying around your crisper, they can be sautéed with the onions before you add the tomatoes. The name might sound a little menacing, but this dish is far from scary.

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