In the nine years I lived in New York, I never ate at Shopsin's. I was busy, sure, but let's be honest: I was also chicken. What if I did something that pissed him off? (Owner Kenny Shopsin has a legendary temper, and isn't afraid to show it.)
Before we left the city, on our last trip downtown, I dragged Andrew into the Essex Street Market and pointed out the red suspenders behind the stove. But we were hauling the baby around with us and worried that she might start screaming if we sat down, so instead we comforted ourselves with the idea that we could cook from Shopsin's book.
This unusual brunch was comforting indeed–what's not to like about eggs with garlic bread? Lucinda Scala Quinn's baked Italian fries would be a fitting, if indulgent side dish; if that's too complicated or rich for you, plain roasted potatoes with a pinch of chopped rosemary or dried oregano would also work.
- 2 tablespoons butter, softened, plus 1 teaspoon butter (he recommends clarified, I used regular) for the eggs
- 1/4 teaspoon minced garlic
- 1 teaspoon grated parmesan
- 1 10-inch baguette, split
- 6 eggs, preferably extra-large
- 1/2 teaspoon heavy cream (I used a splash of whole milk)
- 2 whole canned peeled tomatoes or 1/4 cup chopped canned tomatoes
- 1/2 cup fresh whole-milk ricotta cheese
Preheat the broiler.
Stir together the 2 tablespoons softened butter, garlic, and parmesan; if you are using unsalted butter, stir in a pinch of salt, too.
When the broiler is hot, spread the garlic butter evenly over the split baguette and put the baguette halves buttered-side-up on a baking sheet. Broil until the cheese begins to melt; the amount of time this takes depends on your broiler, so keep a close eye on it. When the garlic bread is finished and cool enough to handle, cut it into roughly 1-inch chunks.
Heat the remaining butter in your egg pan over medium heat.
Cook until the eggs are done, and then top them with the ricotta. Serve as is or broil quickly to melt the cheese a bit.