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Simplified Oeuf Meurette

This is not the classic original, but it is a lovely dish.


  • A third of a full-bodied red wine (I know, but this is an egg celebration – I won’t be making this every night. The original version uses a whole bottle).
  • 1 cup of very good home-made concentrated chicken stock – the stuff that you’ve boiled down so it is like a uber-set jelly when cold
  • 1 cup
  • 4 duck eggs at room temperature
  • 4 slices of Serrano ham
  • 4 large handfuls of baby mixed salad leaves

Have a bowl of very cold water with ice-cubes in at the ready

Put the wine, stock and water into a saucepan, and bring to the boil.

Gently crack the eggs (although duck egg shells are strong, so a hard tap is needed to crack them) and slip the eggs into the boiling liquid.

Let the eggs poach in the liquid for about a minute and a half.

Gently lift them out with a slotted spoon, and lower them into the iced water to stop them cooking any more.

Strain the liquid through a sieve to remove any egg white strands, pouring the liquid into a second saucepan.

Boil the liquid like mad – you want this to become a thick reduction.

Whilst the sauce-to-be is boiling, fry the Serrano ham slices in a hot frying pan, until the fat melts gently and they begin to crisp just a little. Put them to the side when ready.

Put 2 handfuls of salad leaves onto each plate.

Finish the eggs cooking and warm them through by putting them in a pan of boiling water for 30 seconds.

Lay the slices of Serrano ham on top of the salad, 2 per plate.

Gently (always gently with poached eggs) lower the well-drained poached eggs onto the Serrano ham slices, 2 per plate.

Spoon the reduced sauce all over the eggs.


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