This is an awesome vegetarian brunch option or meatless Monday meal. Just because a recipe features eggs, does that automatically lump it into the breakfast category? Don’t limit your imagination when it comes to this meal, it is equally delicious, regardless of the time of day.
Serve with toasted sourdough to sop up the egg yolk or if you want the true Mediterranean experience, opt for grilled pita and a side of Kalamata olives and hummus – a kind of brunch mezze platter.
This is a healthful and relatively light way to brunch. It probably won’t be my go-to this Sunday as I’m going to be hosting my the Unputdownable Book Club Christmas party this Saturday. The book club has been around for five years now and I think this is my fourth year, and fourth Christmas party.
Many of my closest friends are current or former members of the book club. Our founder, Julia, was actually featured on CTV’s The Social in its inaugural season to talk about how to start and run a book club. Julia is a force of nature and is responsible for much of the success and longevity of our club. Since Julia moved back to Nova Scotia, my friend Erin has assumed the leadership role in keeping us all in line.
Our book club meets on the first Sunday evening of each month. The role of hosting the meeting, always a potluck, rotates, as does the responsibility of picking the book. We’ve read everything from smutty romance novels (Fifty Shades of Grey) to classics (The Sun Also Rises) to graphic novels (Are You My Mother? – my first pick that went over like a lead balloon).
The potluck is a free-for-all, there is no sign-up sheet where people commit to making certain dishes, everyone just brings what they can/want to. Some meetings will have 10 different desserts, other meetings will have six salads, and rarely, we manage to cobble together a balanced meal. Wine, luckily, is never in short supply, at the Christmas party especially.
At one of the past Christmas parties, I may have overindulged in a combination of champagne and mistletoe sangria. When I took my leave, I asked if my hostess had a shoehorn because I was having a hard time maintaining my balance on one foot and getting on my new knee-high leather boots, all while juggling a half-eaten bowl of Caesar salad that I insisted on bringing home with me. I would NOT let my friend empty and clean the bowl of soggy salad, I’m sure my Uber driver was delighted that I brought such tasty snacks with me.
The next day I was so hungover, every square inch of my body was in pain. I discovered body parts I didn’t realize I had. My only salvation, after many hours of mewing in agony, was a greasy spoon breakfast of over-easy eggs, bacon, toast, peanut butter and the pièce de resistance, Cavendish hashbrowns, with plenty of ketchup. So, the dish I’m sharing with you here is absolutely divine, it’s no match for a heart palpitation hangover.
I hope the rest of your manage to make it through holiday party season relatively unscathed, with only the faintest of reminders of the previous night’s frivolity, and find an opportunity to toast your relative success with this tasty dish.
- 2 cups diced peeled sweet potato about 1 inch (2.5 cm) dice
- ⅓ cup olive oil
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- 1½ cups diced red pepper about 1 inch (2.5 cm) dice
- 1½ cups fennel about 1 inch (2.5 cm) dice
- 1¼ cups red onion about 1 inch (2.5 cm) dice
- 1¼ cups zucchini about 1 inch (2.5 cm) dice
- 8 cocktail-size tomatoes halved
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh rosemary
- 1 tbsp chopped garlic
- 1 tsp hot smoked paprika
- 4 large eggs
- ¼ cup crumbled feta cheese
- 2 tbsp chopped Italian parsley
1 Preheat oven to 425°F.
2 Toss sweet potato with 2 tbsp olive oil and season with salt. Place on a large rimmed baking sheet and bake for 10 minutes or until beginning to soften.
3 Combine red pepper, fennel, red onion, zucchini and tomatoes in a large bowl. Add remaining ¼ cup olive oil, rosemary, garlic and smoked paprika. Season well with salt and pepper and toss gently to combine.
4 Use a wooden spoon to move sweet potato to one end of baking sheet, and pour vegetable mixture on the other half, shaking pan slightly to ensure that all veg is in a single layer (turn tomatoes cut-side up). Roast for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, or until all vegetables are soft and lightly caramelized.
5 Remove baking sheet from oven and, working quickly, use a wooden spoon to carefully push vegetables into 4 piles (making sure that sweet potato is distributed equally). Make a well in the centre of each pile and squish a tomato or 2 in the middle (so that its skin provides a base for the egg). Crack an egg into each. Season with salt and pepper and sprinkle with feta.
6 Bake for 6 to 8 minutes or until egg whites are set but yolks are still slightly runny. Sprinkle with parsley. Use a large spatula to carefully transfer portions of vegetables and eggs to serving plates.
Recipe from: Mott, Eshun. "Roasted Mediterranean Vegetables with Baked Eggs and Feta." Food & Drink. Autumn 2016.