Panzanella Salad with Broccolini, Almonds, and Poached Eggs


I was reading a piece a while back in the New York Times opinion section about a former restaurant critic. He had a line about trendy restaurants that went something like “Yes, now everyone does hanger steaks with poached eggs, who cares? 10 years ago it was salmon and lentils” And to that article I say, I will totally be putting poached eggs on everything in 10 years. I love poached eggs. 

I think most people associate eggs with breakfast. Maybe it’s because my Mom’s back up dinner was always frittata, or maybe it’s because I used to run a small breakfast restaurant, so I was always thinking about what my specials would be the night before, but either way I eat eggs for dinner all the time.

Mostly I make a big salad and plop a poached egg on top. It’s a simple, protein filled, very cheap way to make a salad feel like dinner, and it’s a wonderful thing. This one is full of day old bread that is ripped apart and fried in olive oil. I’ve also added broccolini but what makes this really special are the slow cooked onions that are fried up with almonds and rosemary. It just makes it feel less like a throw together meal, like your not just making because all of those things happen to be in your fridge, and you had stale bread from last nights dinner and your too lazy to go out and buy some fish. Oh no. This is intentional. And it’s very very good. 

Panzanella Salad with Broccolini, Almonds and Poached Eggs

2 Free Range Organic Eggs

2 cups of Day old (or fresh!) baguette, cut into cubes or torn into pieces.

1 bunch Broccolini

1 Large yellow Onion, thinly sliced.

1/2 cup Whole Almonds, coarsely chopped.

1 sprig of Rosemary, finely chopped

Juice of half a lemon

Olive oil, Salt and Pepper

In a large saucepan over medium-low heat warm up a big glug of olive oil. Add in the onions and a pinch of salt. Cook until the onions are very soft, stirring often and not letting them brown.

Meanwhile get a deep pot of water on the stove on high heat and bring it up to a boil. 

Once the onions are starting to want to brown add in the rosemary and the almonds and let the almonds get nicely toasted and the rosemary make your whole house smell amazing. Now scoop all that goodness into a bowl and get the pan up to a medium heat.

Warm up another big glug of oil and put in broccolini. It will spit a bit when you put it in  don’t be alarmed! Just cook them until they turn bright great and the tips get a little bit browned and they are just a little tender to the bite if you eat one. Salt generously and squeeze a little lemon juice on top. Then put them on the bowl with the onions. 

Once again heat up some olive oil in the pan and add bread this time. Let the bread get nicely brown and salt it too. Once it’s crispy and delicious add it into the bowl and mix it all together and adjust the seasoning.

Now poach the eggs. Drop them in one by one and cook them until the whites are hard but the yolks are soft, about 3 minutes.

Fill up salad bowls with the panzanella and add one egg on each. And there is a simple cheap delicious meal in under 20 minutes!

Sunday Staples- Broccoli, Kale and White Bean Salad

First things first. I’m sorry. I really am, I have never been a worse blogger, and I haven’t even been doing this for a year yet. I’m terrible. I could give you a list of excuses, but I won’t. Just please believe that I will get better. I promise I will.

Secondly, I am promising myself, to take more time to cook at home, eat less Tim Horton bagels and plan meals a little in advance so I don’t get home after a long day at work, and end up with take out. I’ve been doing that a lot, and it’s no good for anyone.

So, to fix both of these problems, every Sunday I’m going to post a recipe that is a simple, easy to make dinner that uses ingredients I keep on hand most of the time. Something not fussy, and by telling you right now, that I will do this every Sunday, it will force me to both blog, and eat better. Done deal.

The first one here is painfully easy, but also something I make all the time, mostly because you can substitute anything into it. I made it here with broccoli and kale, but it would be delicious with brussel sprouts, cauliflower, asparagus, anything really. Similarly the white beans are my favourite but chickpeas, romano beans, or fava beans would be equally lovely.What makes it so good as that you take vegetables that normally you steam and you saute them, which locks in the flavour and adds in the crispy exterior and a sweet caramelized taste.

It’s a beautiful thing really, and it takes about ten minutes to get it on the table. This is the sort of salad I make for lunch or for dinner for myself, although if Jordan’s eating with my I usually have to grill a sausage or a chicken breast for him and his manly appetite. But for this girl, the salad is enough.

Broccoli Kale and White Bean Salad

1 large head of Broccoli

1 bunch of Kale

1 tin of White Beans (or 1 cup soaked over night), rinsed well and drained carefully.

1 Onion, thinly sliced

1 clove of garlic, minced.

1 tsp Cider Vinegar, Red Wine vinegar or lemon juice.

A good pinch of dried chili peppers- depending on your space.

A couple good glugs of olive oil

Salt and Pepper to taste.

In a large saucepan on medium heat add some of the olive oil and cook the onion until it’s very soft, about 8 minutes.

Add in the beans and cook until they get brown and crispy. You may need to add more olive oil to prevent browning.

Add in the broccoli and cook for another 5 minutes, until it starts to brown on the edges and turns a deep green. Add the kale and do the same.

Add the vinegar and season to taste. A Voila, c’est finis!