I’m very aware of how lucky I am that Libby loves healthy food. I see other parents struggling to get their children to eat anything, while Libby sits there happily munching on salad or fruit. I don’t think this is anything we’ve done right or they’ve done wrong, her tastes have just developed to enjoy healthy food.
One of the only things that Libby wasn’t keen on when she was younger was eggs. We persevered with them though, because as a vegetarian, eggs are such a key part of my diet, especially for protein. Luckily, they are now one of Libby’s favourite foods. Most days she asks for either hard boiled eggs or egg and soldiers for lunch, but luckily, she also enjoys my favourite, poached eggs.
What I love about poached eggs is that they’re so versatile. I’m also really keen on the fact that I have some control over the source of eggs. In order to carry the British Lion Eggs logo, eggs have to meet a certain standard. One of the most important things is the labelling, so they are not allowed to say that they’re “farm fresh” or indicate that chickens are free to roam if they are in fact battery hens. This gives me the confidence to buy free range eggs, safe in the knowledge that chickens are kept in good conditions and I’m not inadvertently supporting a cruel practice.
My favourite poached egg meal (call me a heathen if you wish!) is this one:
Good old poached eggs with beans on toast. This is making me hungry just looking at it. But I also have a trick for sneaking poached eggs into a posh meal, and it’s also a vegetarian meal that people tend to be quite impressed with at a dinner party.
I make a risotto with assorted mushrooms and sundried tomatoes. I fry the mushrooms in the oil from the sundried tomatoes and add a little white wine before they go into the risotto. The vegetable stock is then complemented with a bit more white wine (do you see the theme??) while the risotto is cooking.
When the risotto is virtually cooked, I put on a pan with some butter and a drop of water to sauté some asparagus and samphire. This only cooks for a couple of minutes, and then I add a twist of lemon juice and some pepper to the pan, stir it around and take it off the heat, so the asparagus and samphire are still nice and fresh and crunchy. To serve, the risotto goes on the plate, followed by the asparagus and samphire. This is then topped with a poached egg and then a few shavings of vegetarian hard cheese. This is quite possibly my favourite dinner party meal, easy to make so I’m not stuck in the kitchen, but the fabulous ingredients make it relatively impressive none the less. I’m afraid I don’t have a photograph of this masterpiece, as it would be sacrilege to cook it when asparagus is out of season!
Please note, I was sent a small gift for writing this post, but views, opinions, health food loving children, dinner party recipes and an undeniable love of wine are all mine. Sadly, this beautiful looking dinner wasn’t mine, it was my sister’s.