Saturday, March 12, 2011

Eggs in a Purgatory

This TOMATO based soup with ASPARAGUS and EGGS is a old recipe. Perhaps because eggs were an inexpensive source of protein, this was widely used in Sicilian kitchens years ago, and still in mine today. Whatever the reason, this HEALTHY ITALIAN meal will pleasantly surprise you. It has tender asparagus, delicious tomato soup and poached eggs with grated cheese atop. I wasn't quite sure what to name this. If you've seen this before in your Nonna's kitchen and have a name...let me know!

You'll need:

1 clove garlic peeled and smashed, but not chopped
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 bunch asparagus cut into thirds and washed
1 32 oz jar of tomato sauce (I hear Barilla is good)
2 small chicken bouillons
16 ozs water
6 eggs

In a shallow pot (or regular pot), sauté garlic with 1 tablespoon olive oil on low until slightly golden, then remove from oil and discard. Be careful, it will cook quickly, about a minute or so.
Turn off pot, so oil will cool a bit. Meanwhile, cut and clean your asparagus.
Add sauce to slightly cooled oil, so the sauce doesn't scald you and splatter the stove.
Add asparagus to sauce.
Add water and bouillons to sauce and stir.
Bring to a boil and allow it to boil for 5 minutes.
Reduce heat to medium low and crack 6 eggs around pot, not overlapping, not breaking yolk. If sauce is rapidly boiling it will break apart the eggs, so be sure its gently cooking.

Sprinkle with 1/2 cup grated cheese and cover.

Sauce should bubble slightly, but not boil.
Cook for 15 minutes. Turn off and let it sit for 5 more minutes.
Scoop out 1 egg and asparagus and a little sauce and place in serving bowl.
Serve with some bread for dipping.

Serves 6 as a first plate

Note: For a dinner portion, simply double the eggs to 12 so each person gets 2 eggs.
The clog your arteries version of this recipe has chunks of hard cheese, like cacciocavallo cheese, in it. Really tasty, but more fat and calories. Anyone interested in that, just email me for the how to. :)


  1. I asked my mom (who is Ciociaria) and she said this disk is called "uova in purgatorio" or "uova in camicia"...she made this all the time when we were kids! Your spin on it is yum, I made it the other night :)

  2. Cristina, what an intersting set of names! I have to ask my mom ifs shes ever heard of that. Love your picture :)


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