I’m usually not much of a breakfast eater. Not that I don’t like breakfast foods, rather I simply find myself running out the door–very much like a large portion of other adults–with either nothing in hand or scarfing down a handful of granola as I grab my keys before dashing.
I do, however, make an exception to passing up Sunday mornings, when more likely than not, Sir Sackier is at the stove, wooden spoon in hand, apron in place, frying pans sizzling and spitting. There are some things I fear when I pass through the kitchen and see him leaning over a ragged, grease-spattered cookbook, but Sunday morning breakfast is never one of them.
This Sunday happens to be the morning of Eggs Florentine. My husband will attempt–and no doubt succeed–in recreating this fabulous dish we had while staying just outside of Siena, Italy two weeks ago.
Having visited Florence, I discovered a few tidbits about the dish’s past and figured you might enjoy a little travel, a little history, but most importantly, a big success in the kitchen.
Historically, the hard facts about Eggs Florentine are a tad sketchy. It appears Catherine de Medici, married to one of the many kings named Henry (this one controlling France), was a little partial to the food of her homeland, and as we all know how challenging it is to teach a Frenchman to cook, brought a few fellas from her previous palace to help out.
So as no one in the kitchen would mistake the queen’s request for eggs, spinach, toast and hollandaise for anything else she fancied, like maybe Lucky Charms, they referred to the dish as one from her place of origin. Eggs a la Florentine. We since simplified it further by calling it “not the Benedict one, but the one with spinach,” when describing it to a confused member of kitchen waitstaff. Again, there might be much more to the story, but darned if I had the patience to make it up this week.
Whether it’s a special Sunday brunch, a breakfast for dinner weeknight bonanza, or just a chance to stretch your culinary panache, give the Florentines a whirl. I bet they’ll win you over just like Cathy did Hank.
Sir Sackier will be attempting his own secret recipe and since it’s happening as we speak, I’d best give you someone else’s tried and true.
Here are three links that I think will recreate the work of the many chefs I repeatedly applauded in Tuscany this summer.
This one I add purely for the magic and mystery of some people’s culinary imagination.
Make sure you didn’t forget to bring along your country’s cache of servants to tidy things up in the end.