Eggs in Mini Pumpkins with Squash or Sweet Potato Hash
Left picture with squash; right one with sweet potato
This is probably not a dish that you will make more than once or twice a year, but for around Halloween or Thanksgiving, it’s a colorful and yummy dish with which to surprise your family and overnight guests for a breakfast or brunch. It’s a pretty and unique dish to serve and I think just plain memorably fun.
- 4 mini orange pumpkins (4 inches in diameter) which you’ve cut about 1/3rd of the way down, seeded and spoon-scraped clean the insides so that an egg will fit in nicely. The pumpkin inner flesh is delicious to eat with the egg. SAVE THE TOPS FOR DÉCOR and if they have a stem, all the better.
- 1-2 Tblsp. olive oil for the frying pan
- 1 small package cut up fresh squash and cut up even smaller by you into 1/2 inch diced pieces or 1 sweet potato peeled and coarsely shredded or grated.
- 1/2 C. onion or shallot, minced
- 1 red pepper cut longwise into slender strips
- 1/2 C. uncooked bacon, diced or Black Forest ham diced
- 1/2 C. olive oil
- 1/4 C. balsamic vinegar
- 1-2 Tsp. red chili flakes
- 2 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 Tblsp. fresh sage or rosemary, minced
- 4 large eggs
- Preheat oven to 375 the day of serving.
- In a small bowl whip together the olive oil, vinegar, chili flakes, garlic cloves and sage or rosemary. Reserve about 2 Tblsp. to either brush on the bottom of the pumpkins before placing in an egg or to drizzle on top of your egg when the egg is cooked.
- In a medium sized frying pan, heat up the 1-2 Tblsp. olive oil and sauté the onion or shallot along with the red pepper strips until both are softened (about 5 minutes).
- Add the vinaigrette to the onion/red peppers and quickly add the sweet potato or squash; gently stir everything so well mixed. Cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, uncovered until softened and tasting pretty good (about 10 minutes). At this point you can put a lid over the skillet to keep warm until you serve your egg/pumpkin or you can refrigerate it and reheat it with the pumpkins and eggs when you cook them. If you refrigerate the hash, let it come to room temp before putting in the oven with the pumpkins. Baking the hash in the oven will crispen the hash and you may prefer it like that.
- The day of serving, for the pumpkins, line a baking sheet with foil and place them on the foil lined baking sheet, cut side down.
- Bake the pumpkins on the sheet for 15 minutes. Remove from oven.
- Turn the pumpkins right side up on your baking sheet and if you wish, brush the inside of the pumpkins with a little of the leftover vinaigrette and season with S&P or save the vinaigrette for top of the egg drizzle when the egg is cooked. Crack one egg into the center of each pumpkin and if you wish to have a crisper hash or need to reheat your room temp hash, single layer that around your pumpkins.
- Return the baking sheet to the oven and continue baking until the eggs are almost set—around 15 minutes. Start keeping a close eye on them about 10 minutes on and remember that when the pumpkin is out of the oven, the eggs will cook a bit more inside the hot pumpkins.
- To serve: Spoon the hash onto plates and nestle the pumpkins in the center. Lean one pumpkin top on the side of each pumpkin. Drizzle a bit of the vinaigrette on top of the egg if you desire.