Brunch is one of those meals that inspire many of us to wax nostalgic. In fact, it’s one of those meals that even those who didn’t necessarily “shine” in the kitchen, could prepare well. This was definitely the case in my family.
Though my mother was a fabulous cook, my grandmother was absolutely not. My grandfather would coin the classic, trite comment about her kitchen prowess (or lack thereof!): “Do you know what your grandma makes well? Reservations!” (Actually, it’s amazing/fascinating that my mom turned out to be such an amazingly inspired and creative home chef!)
But Grandma could make a mean French toast, and I remember many a Sunday, sitting in her and my grandpa’s Brighton Beach 6th floor apartment and looking at the ocean, while enjoying fresh cantaloupe (one of her favorites!) her wonderful, syrup-topped version of a classic brunch dish.
Brunch has also been a favorite in our home, too! My mom used to get up at dawn and make blueberry pancakes (blueberries from her garden!) for us kids–and then grandkids. My husband, Seth, is also a great brunch cook.
So, mis queridos amigos, you can see that brunch has played an important role as a meal in our lives! Today’s post brings in the Latin twist (hah!) and I’m starting with one of my more recent favorites: Huevos Rancheros.
Though there are many, many versions of this Mexican-born dish, Huevos Rancheros (Ranchers’ Eggs!), this one is my personal favorite. Here I’ve incorporated a couple of non-Mexican elements: Colombian chorizo, Caribbean-Sofrito (click on the link!) and Spanish cheese. Of course, my friends, as with most of my recipes, you can vary it according to your taste! ¡Buen provecho! Enjoy!
Huevos Rancheros recipes vary greatly--and honestly I don't think that I've made 'em the same way twice! Still, the elements I'm listing here are my favorites; I'm sure you'll find yours, too!
- 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 small red onion, finely chopped
- 1/2 small green bell pepper, finely diced
- 1 jalapeño, seeded and minced
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1/2 teaspoon fresh oregano, crumbled
- Salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 cup sofrito (http://food.lohudblogs.com/2013/03/08/latin-twist-sofrito-latin-style-condiment-and-more/)
- 1 cup homemade black beans (with liquid)
- 3 Colombian Chorizo
- 3 cups excellent-quality tortilla chips
- 8 large eggs
- 3/4 cups thinly-sliced Manchego or Monterrey Jack Cheese
- Chopped cilantro, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 400°.
- In a saucepan, heat the olive oil.
- Add the onion, bell pepper, jalapeño, garlic and oregano.
- Season with salt and pepper and cook over high heat, stirring, until lightly browned, 5 minutes.
- Add the sofrito, black beans, and chorizo, and simmer for 5 minutes, until slightly thickened.
- Spoon the sauce into 4 individual, shallow baking dishes and arrange the tortilla chips around the sides.
- Crack 2 eggs into each dish and sprinkle with the cheese (you can also add the cheese at the end). Set the dishes on a baking sheet and bake for 15 to 20 minutes, until the egg whites are set and the yolks are still runny.
- Sprinkle with cilantro and serve right away.