There are a few things that I miss from my old neighborhood: the super close proximity to Prospect Park, the central library, the Botanic Gardens and the Brooklyn Museum. I also miss a handful of ice cream shops and fantastic restaurants. But what I really miss is my Wednesday night dinner from Chavellas. Though I cook most of my meals at home, on Wednesday night I made an exception. I religiously ordered-in the weekly special: chilaquiles tortillas simmering in tomatillo salsa with two fried eggs, queso, crema and refried beans. I became obsessed with tomatillo salsa (or salsa verde/green sauce) and was on the hunt to find one that was as good as the one served at Chavella's but in my new neighborhood. Lucky for me, we are only a few stops away from Brooklyn's best Mexican food and I found my new "go-to" place. Their salsa verde is amazing and I was thinking about buying a gallon of the stuff, you know, just to have around the house 'in case.' But then I got thinking: "Why, if I am obsessed with salsa verde, have I never tried to make it at home?" Well, now I can say that I tried and I was successful!
Salsa verde is a puree of cooked tomatillos, with jalapeno peppers, onion, salt, cilantro and an optional dash of lime. This recipe is extremely easy to make and comes from the Food Network Kitchens. I got a pound of tomatillos from Rossman's on 3rd Avenue and they were delicious. I cooked them in boiling water until they changed color, about 7 minutes. Then I pureed them with jalapeno chile, garlic, onion, salt and cilantro. The eggs go perfectly with the salsa. You bake the whole dish for 15 minutes (be very mindful of the time or they will overcook and not be runny), then add cheese and cook for one more minute. I made a side of breakfast potatoes to top off this fantastic brunch. Buen provecho!
Baked Eggs with Salsa Verde (Courtesy of the Food Network Kitchens)
Vegetable oil, as needed
1/3 cup Salsa Verde, recipe follows (I used double)
4 large eggs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup shredded Monterey jack cheese (about 1/2 ounce)
2 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro leaves
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.
Lightly oil a medium nonstick skillet with an ovenproof handle. Spoon a heaping 1/3 cup of salsa into the pan. Lightly press down the salsa to make 4 evenly spaced shallow nests and break an egg into each. Season with salt and pepper. Bake until the egg whites are cooked and the yolks are still runny, about 15 minutes. Sprinkle the cheese over the eggs and continue baking until just melted, about 1 minute more. Top with the cilantro. Serve immediately.
1 pound tomatillos, husked and rinsed
1 clove garlic
1/4 medium onion
1/4 jalapeno chile, with seeds
1 teaspoon kosher salt
4 sprigs fresh cilantro
Put the tomatillos in a medium saucepan with water to cover. Bring to a boil and cook until tender, about 7 minutes. Drain.
Puree the garlic, onion, jalapeno, and salt in a blender until smooth. Add the tomatillos and cilantro sprigs and puree until smooth.
Yield: About 3 cups