It’s finally Fall in Seattle and with it a comes whole new set of cravings. Gone are my desires for briny cold soups and fiery sauces, dinners that fit in a leaf or rolled up in rice paper. Bring on the stews and the eggs.
All I could think about this last week was egg toast, a daily staple for me and Kevin back in Seoul. Every morning, stepping sleepily out of Guro Station, Kevin and I would greet our regular pojangmacha ajuma (street food vendor) and wait for our breakfast.
Sitting in her mobile restaurant, she would coat the wide griddle separating her and us with ample butter, rubbing the brick back and forth over the hot surface as intently as I slather softscrub in all corners of my porcelain kitchen sink. Once satisfied with the amount of fat now glistening, she would place down two slices of absolutely square white bread.
Turning on her stool only slightly she would grab a silver bowl and crack in just enough eggs and a handful of finely shredded vegetables. On the griddle the omelet went, followed by a turn of the bread, one side now perfectly golden. Before assembling the sandwich, a quick swirl of ketchup graced one slice of bread followed by a dusting of sugar. The whole deal was wrapped neatly in a square of aluminum foil by her husband (his only job aside from chuck and jiving with passers-by as far as I could tell), and off we went, the two blocks to our middle school, lost in the moment of good food, temporarily forgetting about the day’s work that lie ahead.
And so my craving reared its head and I answered. But this time I was looking for something a little more from my egg toast; bigger flavors. Tweaking the ingredients and giving it the gastro-pub treatment, I landed at The Luxury Egg Toast.
Luxury Egg Toast
1 tablespoon butter
1 Brioche bun
1/4 cup shredded cabbage
1/4 cup carrots, julienne, grated, or brunoise
1/4 cup white onion, julienne
1 duck egg
1 tablespoon tomato jam, recipe from NY Times column The Minimalist
3 curls Parmesan or other high quality hard cheese- optional
1. In an 8-inch skillet (or griddle pan if you have one) heat 1/2 tablespoon butter. Cut the brioche bun in half and place in the pan cut side down. Turn heat down to medium low and allow buns to achieve the coveted golden brown.
2. Meanwhile in a small bowl mix together the cabbage, carrots, and onion. You’ll only need to use a healthy pinch of this mixture. Take what you need and wrap up the rest and place in the refrigerator for tomorrow’s egg toast.
3. In a second small bowl, beat the duck egg to combine the yolk and white. Add the cabbage mixture, a pinch of salt and pepper if desired.
4. Heat a second sauté pan over medium high heat with the remaining butter. Add the egg mixture and reduce the heat to medium low. Personally I like a brown free egg, and this is achieved by low heat and constant movement of the egg, much like how we made our French omelets at Veil. But cook the egg as you see fit, the end result should be a nice patty-ish shape.
5. Remove the now very warmed brioche and slather one side with tomato jam. Slide on the egg, followed with cheese if using. Top with remaining brioche and eat- you could wrap it in aluminum foil and eat it on the run but since this is the luxury egg toast I suggest sitting down and enjoying it with a nice chilled glass of rose.