These spiced fried eggs made for a really fresh and interesting brunch dish and they were a welcome change from the more usual scrambled or poached. Eggs go so well with herbs and spices and this dish used both in abundance.
Pitta crisps are easy and delicious, and so useful that I often make a double or even treble batch. They store brilliantly in an airtight tin for a week or two and are great with all manner of dips or just for snacking on when you feel peckish. So much tastier and healthier than reaching for a bag of regular crisps. I normally add chilli flakes as I can’t resist the opportunity to spice them up a bit them but do leave them off if you prefer.
for the pitta crisps:
3 pitta breads
2 tbsp olive oil
1 tsp cumin seeds
1 tsp dried chilli flakes
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper
for the herb yogurt:
160g greek yoghurt
a generous handful of mixed fresh herbs, finely chopped (coriander, mint, parsley & chives are all great)
a little salt & freshly ground black pepper
for the Baghdad eggs:
2 tsp cumin seeds
50g unsalted butter
a splash of olive oil
2 cloves garlic, sliced
1 tsp paprika
Salt & freshly ground black pepper
Preheat the oven to 180°C.
Slice the pittas into 3cm wide strips and peel apart the 2 layers of each strip. Lay in a single layer on a baking tray, drizzle over the olive oil and scatter on the cumin seeds, chilli flakes and a generous seasoning of flaked sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Bake in the oven for about 10 minutes until completely dry and crisp. Remove from the oven and allow to cool on a wire rack
Make the yoghurt sauce by stirring through the herbs and seasoning to taste with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper. Spoon onto two plates and set aside.
In a large frying pan, dry fry the cumin seeds for just a minute or so. As soon as you smell their aroma lifting from the pan tip them into a pestle and mortar and grind coarsely . Add the butter to the pan, along with a little drizzle of olive oil to help prevent it burning. When it has melted and starts foaming, stir through the garlic, paprika and ground cumin and fry for a couple of minutes. Then crack in the eggs, and fry, basting in the spiced butter until they are cooked to your liking.
When the eggs are cooked use a fish slice to lift them out onto the serving plates, two per person, and drizzle over the butter. Serve immediately, with the pitta crisps to dunk in both the yolk and the herby yogurt.