Eggs: The New TV Dinner

Upside-Down Mouillette, a poached quail egg on top of black olive tapenade (the fact that the egg is on the mouillette rather than the mouillette being in the egg accounts for its upside-downedness)

Speck and Purple Fig Mouillette

Avocado and Langoustine Mouillette (so luxurious)

Roquefort and Sliced Apple Mouillette

Gingerbread/Spice Bread (pain d’epices) and Diced Mango Mouillette

Of course the mouillettes are the star of the show, but the eggs are the reason for the dish.  Use fresh, fresh organic eggs and boil them in salted water for 3 to 4 minutes, depending on how soft you want your soft-boiled eggs to be.  Put the eggs into egg cups and serve them with a small spoon.  You can use the spoon to tap around the top of the egg to crack the shell, so that you can lift off the cap (a job I always try to do nonchalantly when I’m at the Le Flore, but one which I find a little tricky — if you don’t tap with enough conviction, you get a ragged edge; tap with too much force, and you get shell in your egg and you’re left to pick out the little pieces, an inelegant task) or you can use a nifty little egg topper to make fast work of it.  (Maybe I should take to carrying one in my purse…) 

As for the mouillettes, you can use any kind of bread you like, but it’s good if it has some body, especially if you’re going to top the strips with something more substantial than a slick of butter.  Baguette works, as does a country bread.  In Paris, my mouillettes of choice are cut from a Pain Poilane, a big, substantial round with character.

If you read French — or even if you just want to see some great food pictures — take a look at Sonia’s books or her website

Dorie Greenspan