For all of you that follow me on instagram, you probably get the distinct impression that eggs are my favorite food. Truth is, they really aren’t. I simply quite enjoy eggs for breakfast. Since I am inflicted with that wonderful responsibility of (kind of, completely, and desperately) needing my day job, an early morning breakfast is really my time to cook, photograph in non-crappy light, and share my creations.
Therefore, you’re going to see a whole lot of eggs and a whole lot of breakfast in general. Hey, I’m a believer in embracing what we are capable of and trying to be the best at it–so, I am a self-proclaimed egg expert. One of these days when I figure out how to have copious amounts of money drop into my bank account magically and consistently–I’ll post every freaking meal of the day.
I am a huge fan of breakfast/brunch egg dishes that you can easily cook for multiple people at the same time. Sometimes I feel like the only way to make a fresh egg breakfast for more than one other person is to put one of those super tall paper chef hats on and do the hotel make-your-own-omelette thing.
These eggs in cheesy clouds all cook at once and are all effortlessly and perfectly cooked at once. It’s a fancy looking dish accompanied by a truly not difficult recipe. I feel the need to point out that there are only two ingredients–four if you include the chives and black pepper for garnish. You whip the dickens out of the egg whites, fold them with nutty gruyere cheese, drop the yolks in, bake them for a bit, and finish them with showers of black pepper and fresh chives. They are like a cheesy, puffy miracle–whatever that is. Also, side note, they look absolutely magical.
6 whole eggs, separated (the fresher the eggs, the better!)
1 cup grated gruyere cheese
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon chives, finely chopped
1. Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees
2. Prepare a baking sheet by lining it with parchment paper and spraying with non-stick spray (I used coconut oil spray but please use whatever you have on hand!)
3. While oven pre-heats, set out one small prep bowl and one medium mixing bowl. Separate each egg and place the yolks in the small prep bowl and the whites in the medium mixing bowl. (I know this picture shows 7 yolks when the recipe calls for 6–I was afraid I would later pop one because I’m klutzy–so I separated an extra one. Don’t judge me)
4. Using a hand mixer, starting on low speed, whisk the egg whites while moving in a circular and even motion. Slowly increase speed to high over the next two minutes. We are looking for soft peaks–there is truly no set time on how long this whole process takes–it took me 4 minutes of mixing after reaching my high speed to get these soft peaks. Let these photos guide you on what you’re looking for. Soft peaks means that when you make a little dollop shape in the whites with a spoon and move away, it stays for a few seconds before slowly falling.
5. To bowl of whipped egg whites, using a rubber spatula, gently fold in the grated cheese.
6. Using a large metal spoon, divide the cheesy egg white mixture into 8 large dollops onto your lined, greased baking sheet. Using the spoon, create a deep well in each dollop.
7. Using your fingers, ever so gently, take the egg yolks that you’ve set aside, one at a time, and set it into each well.
8. Bake for 10 minutes or until egg yolks have just set. This timing, for me in my climate and with my oven, resulted in a medium-done egg yolk. Trust your eyes and gut on this one! When the clouds are done, they will be golden brown and the egg yolks will me lightly cooked and still runny.
9. Generously sprinkle the finished clouds with the fresh chives and black pepper before serving.
I hope you all love this one as much as I do!