Spring has moved into the Bay Area and unpacked all her suitcases full of flowering trees, daffodils, crocuses, and leafing rose bushes. She’s planning to stay for awhile. We have a long tangle of wisteria that frames the front of the house, loaded with large fuzzy oval buds about to burst open with a spill of purple flowers, which I impatiently wait for every year. Spring drama on a twig.
But we’re not actually there right now.
We’re in the mountains with remnants of snow on the ground, and small, tight buds just starting to form on the aspens, greedily holding in all their energy. The generosity of spring hasn’t quite arrived here, the mountains have their own calendar; but with all the glorious sunshine, we know it can’t be far away. And it’s hard to complain too much, because to say it’s been a mild winter in the Sierras would be a serious understatement.
The theme for this Sunday’s #SundaySupper is Spring and all that’s green (we couldn’t completely ignore St. Patrick’s Day after all), so I made this egg bake that’s perfect for a spring brunch. It uses spring onion (or if you can’t find them yet where you live, green onions will do just fine), asparagus and baby artichokes.
A Few Cooking Notes:
It’s important to allow the sautéed onion mixture cool down before stirring into the eggs, to make sure you don’t end up with scrambled eggs. It doesn’t take much heat to curdle them. If you’re in a hurry, though, just spoon large spoonfuls into the eggs, one at a time, whisking the egg mixture the entire time to disperse the warm onions.
There’s a lot of ‘filling’ to this recipe between the onions, leeks, asparagus, and potatoes. I whipped four of the egg whites to a froth just approaching stiff, and folded them into the egg mixture to create a lighter, more springy texture. If you like a denser egg bake, just mix the 12 eggs together without separating any whites out.
The entire egg bake can be made ahead up to the point where the whipped egg whites are folded in. The egg mixture can be refrigerated overnight, as can the cooked asparagus and artichokes. Ninety minutes before serving, remove everything from the refrigerator, whip the egg whites, fold them into the eggs, pour into a casserole, top with the asparagus and artichokes, and bake.
Serve with strips of bacon on the side for the meat eaters in the family, and a fresh green salad with avocados.
Have a pitcher of mimosas nearby.
Egg Bake with Asparagus and Artichokes for a Spring Brunch
Serves 6 adults
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Cook Time: 2 hours 15 minutes
- 6 cups water
- 1 lemon
- 3 cloves of garlic, smashed
- 1/2 cup white wine
- sprig of thyme
- 2 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
- 3 baby artichokes
- 1 large spring onion, or 4 green onions (scallions)
- 1 large leek, washed, and thinly sliced across its ribs, about 2 cups
- 1 onion, finely diced, about 2 cups
- 1 pound asparagus
- 1 russet potato
- 3 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 Serrano pepper (optional)
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 teaspoon Herbes de Provence
- 8 large eggs and 4 eggs separated
- 1 cup 1% milk
- 1 cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus 1 tablespoon for dusting after baking
- 1/2 cup grated fontina cheese
Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
Combine the water, juice from the lemon, smashed garlic, wine, and 1 teaspoon salt in a large pot over medium-high heat. Bring to a simmer.
Cut the baby artichokes in half, slice off the stem and top one inch of the artichoke. Peel the leaves off and discard until you reach light green leaves. Add the artichokes to the simmering water. Simmer for 20 minutes, or until tender.
While the artichokes are simmering, dice the spring onion (or if using scallions, slice into one inch segments). Prep the onions and leeks, and combine with the spring onions in a medium bowl.
Slice or break off the ends of the asparagus, and slice into one inch pieces un to two inches below where the spears begin. Add the cut pieces to the bowl with the onions. Reserve the spears.
Grate the potato using a large hole grater. Mince the garlic. Seed and mince the Serrano pepper. Add all to the bowl with the onions.
Heat the olive oil in a sauté pan or soup pot over medium heat, and add the onions, asparagus, 2 1/2 teaspoons salt, and the Herbes de Provence. Sauté for five minutes. Reduce the heat and cover, and cook for an additional 10 minutes. Cool slightly.
When the artichokes are tender, remove from the heat and add the asparagus spears for 7 minutes, or until just tender.
Whisk the 8 whole eggs and 4 yolks together in a large bowl. Add the milk, cheeses, and potato. Gradually whisk in the onion mixture one large spoonful at a time, unless the onion mixture is close to room temperature.
The recipe can be made ahead to this point, with all components wrapped and refrigerated overnight.
Whip the egg white to a medium firm peak, and fold into the egg mixture using a large spatula. It’s best to fold the egg white in one-third at a time.
Butter or oil the baking dish, and pour the eggs in. Top with the artichokes and asparagus spears.
Place the baking dish on a baking sheet and bake on the middle rack for 75 minutes, or until firm in the middle. The eggs will begin to brown after the first half hour, and I recommend covering the dish with foil at this point for the remaining baking time.
Allow to sit for 15 minutes before serving.
Serve with bacon or sausage for the meat eaters at the table, and a big green salad with avocados for everyone.
And maybe a pitcher of mimosas nearby.
If you’re in the mood for some springtime at your table too, just take a look at what the rest of the #SundaySupper family has cooked up. You’ll have ideas enough to fill the entire season.
Green and Spring Dishes Menu Includes:
- Baked Eggs with Shaved Asparagus and Proscuitto by The Girl In The Little Red Kitchen
- Shrimp and Leek Quiche by Gourmet Drizzles
- Spinach and Cheddar Quiche for St. Patrick’s Day Brunch by Supper For A Steal
- Asparagus and Spring Onion Frittatta by Country Girl in the Village
- Savory Crepes with Prawns, Broccoli and Hollandaise Sauce by Masala Herb
- Egg Bake with Spring Onions, Asparagus and Artichokes by The Whimpy Vegetarian
Apps, Bread, Salads, Soups and Dressings:
- Gluten Free Irish Soda Bread by The Meltaways
- Strawberry, Avocado, Spinach Salad with Strawberry Vinaigrette by Daily Dish Recipes
- Asparagus Gazpacho by The Not So Cheesy Kitchen
- Spinach Bacon Salad by In The Kitchen with Audrey
- Anchovy and Egg Salad by Pescetarian Journal
- Sweet and Sour Cabbage Soup by Fast Food to Fresh Food
- Asparagus Red Pepper Salad by No One Likes Crumbley Cookies
- White Asparagus & Salmon Spring Salad by Family Foodie
- Chicken-Strawberry Field Green Salad w/Strawberry Balsamic Dressing by The Weekend Gourmet
- Bacon & Egg Spring Salad by Daddy Knows Less
- Green Garbanzo Hummus by Soni’s Food
Main and Sides:
- Pea Shoot Risotto by Small Wallet, Big Appetite
- Creamy Meyer Lemon Pasta by Juanita’s Cocina
- Sweet Ginger Scallion Noodles by What Smells So Good?
- Asparagus Pesto w/Heirloom Fingerlings and Orecchiette by Webicurean
- Coddle for St. Patrick’s Day by Noshing With The Nolands
- Corned Beef Cabbage Rolls by Curious Cuisiniere
- Brown Butter Brussels Sprouts with Gruyère and Hazelnuts by Hip Foodie Mom
- Raw Cucumber Sandwich with Avocado and Spinach Sauce by Mama’s Blissful Bites
- Berry Tacos by Peanut Butter and Peppers
- Asparagus and Prosciutto Bundles by Diabetic Foodie
- Caramelized Grapes and Brie Whole Wheat Galette by Vintage Kitchen
- Pink Water Kimchi (Nabak Kimchi) by Kimchi Mom
- Key Lime Cheesecake by The Foodie Army Wife
- Irish Coffee Ice Cream with Caramel Whiskey Sauce by 30A Eats
- Key Lime Cream Cheese Empanadas by La Cocina de Leslie
- Coconut Raspberry Layer Cake by Gotta Get Baked
- Fresh Mango Berry Mousse With Coconut Cream by Sue’s Nutrition Buzz
- Gluten Free Carrot Cookies by Simply Gourmet
- Chocolate Mint Brownies by Hezzi-D’s Books and Cooks
- Strawberry Sorbet by Magnolia Days
- Cadbury Creme Egg Pull-Apart Sweet Rolls by Chocolate Moosey
- Strawberry Cheesecake Parfaits by That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Meyer Lemon Ice Cream Sandwiches by Cravings of a Lunatic
- Lemon Roll Cake by The Ninja Baker
- Blueberry Cheesecake Ice Cream by Kudos Kitchen by Renee
- Candied Flowers by Cindy’s Recipes and Writings
- Lemon Citrus Cookies by Mom’s Test Kitchen
- Mini Fruit Tarts by Big Bear’s Wife
- Chocolate Pudding with Irish Cream by Buffy and George
- Fried Ice Cream by Neighborfood
- Watergate Salad by Cupcakes and Pearls Blog
- Good-for-You Strawberry Tiramisu Cheesecake Cups by Cupcakes & Kale Chips
- Guinness Beer Milkshake by The Urban Mrs
- Wines to Pair with Springtime #SundaySupper Dishes by ENOFYLZ Wine Blog
- Irish Spring Tea Party by My Cute Bride
- Fizzy Citrus Cocktails by The Messy Baker
Please be sure you join us on Twitter throughout the day during #SundaySupper. We’ll be meeting up at 7:00 p.m. EST for our weekly #SundaySupper live chat where we’ll talk about our favorite cookout recipes!