French celebrity chef Jacques Pépin is a household name in kitchens around the world. With more than two-dozen cookbooks and 14 different popular cooking series on public television to his credit, including the Emmy Award-winning Julia & Jacques Cooking at Home, he has a newly published cookbook out to mark his final season after 28-years on television.
A self-professed lover of eggs, Jacques shares this recipe for Eggs in Pepper Boats from his new cookbook, Jacques Pépin Heart & Soul. It’s an easy-to-make dish that combines eggs, sweet peppers, cheese and cilantro—perfect for brunch or lunch.
Jacques uses the long, pale green banana peppers variety for this dish, but you can also substitute either poblano or cubanelle peppers if you prefer a little heat.
Eggs in Pepper Boats
Yield: Serves 4
2 (4 oz each) banana, cubanelle or poblano peppers
4 extra-large eggs, preferably organic
6 tbsp grated cheddar cheese
4 tbsp water
1 tbsp olive oil
½ tsp salt
¼ tsp freshly ground black pepper
2 tbsp fresh cilantro leaves (or as much as you prefer)
For the peppers: Split the peppers lengthwise in half and remove the seeds and the stems if you want. Arrange them cut-side down in a large skillet and add the oil, water and a ¼ teaspoon of the salt and cook, covered, over medium heat, turning occasionally, for about 4 minutes, or until the peppers are softened somewhat but still firm.
For the eggs: Remove the skillet from the heat and, if necessary, turn the peppers over so they are hollow-side up. Place the cheese in the peppers. Break an egg into each one and sprinkle the eggs with the remaining ¼ teaspoon of salt and the pepper.
Return the skillet to the stove, cover and cook over medium heat for 3 to 4 minutes, until the egg whites are set, but the yolks are still runny.
To serve: Transfer to plates, sprinkle with the cilantro and serve immediately.