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Braised eggs with leeks and preserved lemons

Braised Eggs with Leeks and Preserved Lemon

With a few tweaks here and there, I basically stole this from Yotam Ottolenghi

Serves 4, give or take


  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil

  • 4 large leeks, washed really well, trimmed, and sliced 1/4 inch thick

  • Salt and black pepper

  • 1 teaspoon cumin seeds, toasted and crushed

  • 1 small preserved lemon, seeds discarded, skin and flesh finely chopped

  • 2 cups low sodium vegetable stock

  • 200g baby spinach leaves

  • 6 eggs

  • Enough feta or goat cheese to break into small pieces and sprinkle over the leeks

  • 1 tablespoon za’atar



  • In a large sauté pan for which you have a lid, melt the butter with a tablespoon of oil on a medium-high heat. Once the butter starts to foam, add the leeks and a generous grind of pepper. Fry for three minutes, stirring often, until the leeks are soft, then add the cumin, lemon and vegetable stock, and boil for four or five minutes, until most of the stock has evaporated and the leeks are silky and lovely. Fold in the spinach, cook for a minute until wilted, then turn the heat to medium.

  • Spoon the leeks into four small skillets. Make an indentation in each, and break an egg into each hole. Dot the cheese around the eggs, cover the skillets, and simmer gently until the egg whites are set and the yokes are still runny. (If you don’t have little skillets, keep the leeks where they are, make four indentations in the mixture, then break an egg into each space.)

  • Mix the za’atar with the remaining oil, brush gently over the eggs so as not to break the yolks.

  • Serve with na’an, perhaps charred over a gas burner and brushed with butter.

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