The Maine Dish
Quail eggs at Boda: seven bites of bliss.
“The vulgar boil, the learned roast, an egg.”
Alexander Pope: Satires
I’ve always loved eggs. I’ve kept laying hens for a decade to supply my catering company and our family. But I’ve never been a runny yolk kind of girl, unless it was atop a hot plate of pasta with Parmesan cheese, crushed red pepper and sauteed garlic scapes. Or the frisee salad at The Front Room. In fact, I was served “Eggs with Eggs” (a soft poached egg topped with approximately seven pounds of Beluga caviar) at a special dinner at Per Se a few years ago and–with Thomas Keller himself standing in the room–it took every ounce of self control I had to get it down.
Well, my friend Brent convinced me to try a quail egg at Boda. Let me tell you: I like these runny eggs. Cracked into a screeching hot escargot pan with a dash of soy sauce and topped with a light sprinkling of thinly sliced scallions, they are OUT OF CONTROL. The heat of the pan lightly browns the bottom and leaves the egg perfectly sunny-side up.
This method is the equivalent of roasting vegetables instead of boiling them in water. Perfectly seasoned by the soy, the flavor of the egg is concentrated, probably owing to much of its moisture evaporating on contact with the pan, and you can really appreciate the delicateness of these little bites of bliss.
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