Eggs in Purgatory
A classic Italian dish with a strange name. This comes together in a flash, and with almost no effort, freeing up your time to eat and enjoy the rest of your day. I've also included shortcuts and suggestions to make it even easier.
Eggs in Purgatory
3-4 ounces of baby spinach, rinsed
1 1/2 cups cooked chickpeas, drained*
2 cloves fresh garlic, peeled and thinly sliced (optional)
1 (28 oz) can of crushed tomatoes‡
Salt, to taste
Parmigiano Reggiano, finely grated, for serving
In an 8-10 inch skillet with a lid warm the olive oil over medium heat. When fragrant add spinach and cook, stirring often, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Add the chickpeas and Riviera Herbs and continue to cook, stirring, until most of the liquid has evaporated, about 5-6 minutes.
Add the garlic (if using), and cook for about 1 minute more. Then add the tomatoes, stir well, and drop to a simmer for about 15 minutes, or until thickened. Taste and adjust seasoning with salt and/or Urfa chile, then stir well to redistribute everything.
Make a small evenly-spaced divot with a spoon and gently crack an egg into each, keeping the yolks intact. Cover the pan and simmer until whites are set but yolks are still runny (timing will depend on how you like your eggs but 5 minutes is a good time to start checking them).
Garnish with a healthy layer of grated Parmigiano Reggiano, and optionally more Urfa chile.
* You can either make the chickpeas from scratch, or use a good canned brand like Eden (1 1/2 cups is about the yield from a can). If the latter, be sure to save the liquid as you can make aquafaba from it to lighten the mousse.
‡ You can also use a 24-ounce jar of your favorite pasta sauce instead of canned tomatoes. I recommend using either marinara or arrabbiata. Instead of leaving the lid off, cover the skillet once you add the sauce as it does not need to reduce, and note that you will likely not need to add any salt.
Variations & Ideas:
• If you'd like to make this a vegan dish you can double the spinach and chickpeas and add a piece of kombu and/or some miso to the sauce to supply the savoriness that you'd normally get from the Parmigiano. Once the sauce has reduced (if you're using tomatoes and not pasta sauce), cover and cook for about 15 more minutes and the chickpeas will be extra creamy.
• If you'd like to make individual servings you can split the sauce into small covered cocottes and either cook on an induction range (I find them too small for traditional burners), or in the oven.
Food image and recipe © Christian Leue.
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