Make-ahead spinach "nests" gently hold oven-poached eggs.
Thirty years ago, a recipe for eggs in spinach nests might have had a hard time making it to print. Because of their cholesterol content, eggs were considered a health risk and were taken a beating in the press. By the time the dust settled, it turned out that eggs might not be as troublesome as once believed, and anyone who loved eggs felt a sense of culinary relief.
Nutrition experts now say there is a place in healthy diets for all foods, including eggs. The trick is to not focus on a single food but to strive for variety and moderation. And so, egg consumption, which had fallen to a record low in 1991, rebounded and continues to rise.
Sometimes called “nature’s perfect food,” eggs are an inexpensive source of quality protein and an important source of vitamins and minerals. One egg has 212 milligrams of cholesterol, but less than two grams of saturated fat (primarily found in meat and cheeses)—the real culprit for increasing the risk of heart disease. In its most recent recommendations, the American Heart Association says healthy people can eat up to four eggs a week.
Egg recipes run the gamut from fast and easy scrambled to time-consuming souffles. One of the best combinations is eggs and spinach. Eggs in spinach nests can be the busy cook’s answer to Eggs Benedict. Instead of poaching eggs individually, they’re baked right in the spinach and served on English muffins. It’s an easy recipe to embellish but any way you eat it, it makes a terrific brunch or supper dish.
By Jean Kressy, a food writer in Ashburnham, Mass.
Prepare the spinach nests up to two days ahead for an easy egg brunch dish.