Monday, March 21, 2016

One of America's Favorites - Egg in the Basket

Egg in the basket with a "hat" or "lid"

Egg in the basket—also known by many other names— is an egg fried in a hole of a slice of bread. A waffle or bagel (with a large enough hole) can also be substituted for the slice of bread.

Variant names for the dish include "toad in the hole", "gashouse eggs", "a hole in one", "spit in the ocean", and "popeye eggs".

The dish can be seen being prepared onscreen by actor Guy Kibbee in the 1935 Warner Bros film, Mary Jane's Pa, leading them to sometimes be known as "Guy Kibbee Eggs". They are sometimes called "Betty Grable Eggs", stemming from the preparation of the dish in the actress's 1941 film Moon Over Miami, although the script refers to them as "gashouse eggs". The name "Gashouse Special" is used in the 1975 book The Kids' Kitchen Takeover by Sarah Stein, attributing the name as her husband's idea.

The dish is prepared in the 1987 film Moonstruck (by Olympia Dukakis' character). It is also prepared in a 1996 episode of the sitcom Friends, by the character Joey Tribbiani, who refers to it as "Eggs with the bread with the hole in the middle, a la me!" It is called "Eggy in the Basket" by Stephen Fry's character in the 2005 film V for Vendetta.

The dish is typically bread with an egg in the center and then cooked with a little butter or oil.
Preparation of "egg in the basket".

It is commonly prepared by cutting a circular or square hole in the center of a piece of bread. The bread, sometimes buttered prior to cooking, is fried in a pan with butter, margarine, cooking oil, or other fat. When browned, the bread is flipped, and the egg is cracked into the "basket" cut into the toast. Alternatively, the egg may be dropped into the bread before the bread is browned. The time the egg is placed in the bread is dependent on desired consistency.

The dish is often either covered or flipped while cooking to obtain even cooking, and requires a degree of skill and temperature control to prevent burning either the egg or bread while the entire dish is cooked to the desired consistency.

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