Shirred eggs

Ramekins aren't just for advanced culinary creations like soufflés and crème brûlées. But as with mathematical proofs, some of the most elegant foods you can prepare in a ramekin are the simplest.

Shirred eggs with pesto sauce, spiced chocolate biscotti

Enter the shirred egg. Don't be intimidated by the word "shirred"; it's just the special term for a baked egg. The yolk is as delightfully runny as in a poached egg, but it's easier than scrambling. And because the egg isn't fried, it's healthier.

I basically treat shirred eggs just as I'd treat poached eggs. The whites even have a similar fluffy texture, though they aren't as thin. In my kitchen, poached eggs usually imply that they are topped with pesto sauce, perhaps mixed with a touch of cream, and shirred eggs aren't much different - I just leave the toast or english muffin to the side. Or in the case of today's breakfast, I omitted the toast for two homemade spiced chocolate biscotti to accompany my cappuccino.

Shirred eggs


  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon milk
  • Butter
  • Salt
  • Pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Lightly butter a small (approximately 4 ounce) ramekin. Crack the eggs into the ramekin and top with the milk. If you want, you can top the eggs with a small amount of butter. Season lightly with salt and pepper.
  3. Bake until the egg whites are opaque and set (15 to 20 minutes); the yolks will still be slightly wobbly. Serve immediately.

Yields one serving.