Breakfast for gypsies

I continually sing the praises of baked eggs, probably because you can achieve a soft cooked egg without messing around trying to poach them. This dish goes several steps further and would be ideal on a Sunday morning after one too many pints the night before.

In fact, this recipe comes from a London gastropub, The Eagle. Arguably the first gastropub (because they apparently invented the word), The Eagle is located in Clerkenwell, a neighborhood right next to Islington and Stoke Newington, where I lived for 10 years. This area is now teeming with gastropubs where great food can be had in a relaxed setting, and of course with a good pint of beer.

Mediterranean food dominates at The Eagle, and these gypsy eggs are earthy and spicy from the chorizo and smoked paprika. You can make them in individual earthenware dishes or in one larger baking dish as I did. When purchasing the chorizo, make sure you buy the kind that needs to be cooked, not the cured type. Serve with big mugs of steaming hot coffee and some country bread.

Gypsy Eggs
Adapted from The Gastropub Cookbook by Diana Henry
Serves 4

1/2 cup Serrano ham (if you can't find it, choose another type of ham or bacon that is readily available) finely sliced and roughly chopped
1/2 cup cooking chorizo, roughly chopped
olive oil for frying
1 medium onion, finely chopped
2 cloves of garlic, finely sliced
1 tsp smoked paprika
1/2 cup peas, fresh or frozen
2 cans chopped tomatoes in thick juice
1 cup chicken stock
8 medium free range eggs
extra virgin olive oil
black pepper
coarse country bread to serve

Preheat your oven to 400F (200C). Fry the ham and chorizo in a tablespoon of olive oil for about five minutes. Remove the meat and add the onion and garlic, cooking it until soft, not browned.

Add the smoked paprika, peas, tomatoes and the reserved ham back to the pan. Add the chicken stock and cook for 10 minutes until the mixture is sloppy rather than very liquid.

Divide it between your individual 4 inch dishes OR into one large baking dish. Make a small well where you want to place the eggs and crack 2 eggs into each individual dish or dot them around the larger dish.

Bake for 5-10 minutes, depending on how you like your eggs.

Serve with country bread for scooping.


  1. This sounds really good. we love all of these ingredients.
    Aunt Pat

  2. Aunt Pat- we should skype soon! Hope you two are doing well- we are anxiously awaiting spring here in Chicago!

  3. Happy 1st Birthday Hunger Habit -- Way to Go!!