Baked eggs with blistered cherry tomatoes

This goes down in history as one of the prettiest dishes to photograph/serve/eat. It’s so colorful, silky, and multi dimensional—it looks gorgeous from every angle. It’s actually incredibly simple to make, too, and I don’t feel it’s very sensitive to such things as what ingredients you throw in (don't fret if you don't have exactly what my version calls for), what dish you cook it in, etc. The most important thing to keep in mind is seasoning! Eggs need proper seasoning—namely salt and pepper—but fresh herbs and sharp cheese go so, so well too. 

This could be made on a casual Sunday morning, or would make a lovely main dish for brunch. I love the idea of sweet little individual ramekins for serving a brunch crowd (and without a lot of work required). And the nice part is that it doesn’t really beg for any sides, except for maybe some crusty bread, because the bacon and veggies are baked right in. You could of course add sides to it if you’d like, though—maybe some fried potatoes or dressed greens. 

Baked eggs with blistered cherry tomatoes

Yields 4 servings
4 ramekins (I used shallow, wide ramekins, but 1 cup ramekins would work fine too—you just may have to slightly adjust cooking time)
6 bacon strips
2 T olive oil
½ pint cherry tomatoes, whole
Pinch of salt and pepper
2 cloves garlic, sliced
8 extra large eggs (large is fine, but for some reason I just like the big guys for this)
8 T cream or half ’n half
¼ cup shredded parmesan cheese
2 T chopped parsley (reserve a little for later)
1 T chopped chives (reserve a little for later)
1 tsp salt, divided
Freshly cracked black pepper

Cook bacon in a frying pan over medium-low heat until crisp. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

Heat olive oil in a pan over medium to medium-low heat. Add cherry tomatoes and cook for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally so all sides blister. Add sliced garlic, salt, and pepper for the last 3 minutes of cooking. While tomatoes are cooking, begin working on the eggs. Break the bacon into little pieces (under an inch) and sprinkle in the bottom of each ramekin, saving some for sprinkling on top later. Crack two eggs into each ramekin. Pour about 2 tablespoons of cream into each ramekin. Sprinkle a little parmesan cheese onto each. Top with a sprinkling of parsley, chives, salt, and freshly cracked pepper. 

Place ramekins on the middle rack of the oven. Cook for about 12-14 minutes, checking at about 10 minutes in case they are done early. You want to cook until the egg whites are set and the yolks look to be firming just around their edges.

Top each ramekin with a couple of blistered cherry tomatoes. Sprinkle with remaining bacon, parsley, and chives. Serve right away with buttered toast or English muffins.