Here in New York City we take our weekend brunching very seriously. Served up between 10am and 3pm, most restaurants lure guests in with a special menu that turns traditional breakfast dishes into mini works of culinary art. Coupled with a few cocktails and an amazing group of friends, brunch can be the highlight of even the craziest weekends.
But what if you want to recreate that same experience at home? This recipe for Rustic Egg Tarts is easy to make and will wow your friends and family. So call up some friends, brew up a large pot of coffee and shake up some Bloody Mary’s (or Caesars) – it’s time to brunch!
The backbone of this recipe is the puff pastry shell. While I normally prefer to make things from scratch, this is one item that I always pick up at the grocery store. The sheets are easy to use and the results are consistent. Look for a package in the freezer section and make sure that you do not confuse with phyllo dough- they are two very different items.
Most boxes are sold with two pastry sheets inside. For the best results, store in your own freezer until you are ready to use. Allow one sheet thaw at room temperature for 40 minutes before handling and wrap the other sheet in foil then return to the freezer.
The trick to puff pastry is that you want to keep it cold. If the dough feels sticky or warm, place it back in the freezer for 5 minutes before handling. If you find cracks or holes in the dough when opening or rolling out, use a little bit of water to soften and push back together.
Puff pastry can expand to almost 8 times its original thickness while cooking. Pricking the pastry shells helps to let the air escape so that it doesn’t expand as much. To start, you will bake the shells in a 375°F oven for 15 minutes until a light golden brown color.
While your pastry is in the oven, grab a medium-sized skillet and start cooking the bacon. You will need one slice of bacon for each tart. When cooked, remove from pan and lay on a sheet of paper towel to help absorbs any extra grease. Cut each slice into 4 or 5 smaller pieces and set aside.
Once you remove the shells from the oven you need to create a well for your ingredients. Because the centers of the shells will have puffed up, use a fork to gently flatten the centers. I find it’s best to start just inside the folded over rim and work toward the center. To give the edges an extra golden finish, add a light wash of melted butter to the entire shell before adding the remaining ingredients.
Next, place the chunks of bacon around inner edge of the tart shell. Carefully crack one egg in the center and add sliced cherry tomatoes around the egg. Top with a couple of shakes of salt and pepper to taste. You can also add a pinch of cheese to each tart before cooking. I suggest using asiago or parmesan for an extra kick of flavor.
Place baking sheet back in the oven and cook for and additional 20-25 minutes, until the pastry edges are golden brown and outside of the eggs are white. The tops of the eggs will look glassy but the yolks will be set. These Rustic Egg Tarts are filling, so serve with a few slices of fruit or a small salad.
Let me know what you think! Post a comment below or share a photo on Instagram and use the hashtag #bohorusticrecipe.