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Mother's Day Brunch Menu III—Eggs in Purgatory / Citrus & Pecorino Salad / Grilled Romaine

Mother's Day Brunch Menu: Eggs in Purgatory,  Citrus & Pecorino Salad , Grille


This is part three of the Mother's Day Brunch menu series by my friend, Los Angeles private chef Kat Randazzo. You can find part one here and part two here.

Eggs in Purgatory! This is a great way to cook eggs for guests. It's the Italian Shakshuka. The deep tomatoey dish goes great with the bright, citrus salad (how pretty is the trick of slicing citrus cross-wise?). And for a bonus, try the Grilled Romaine (or if you have a stereotypical grill-master husband, pass it off to him).

I got into the idea of cooked lettuce the first time I ate the Braised Lettuce at Alimento in Silver Lake. I would have been satisfied if that was my last meal in life. I ordered it again with my family and my dad declared it the best thing he'd ever eaten. I did try to recreate it at home, but of course, it didn't measure up. Kat's grilled romaine looks easier, and since all four people in my family love caesar salad, I'm optimistic that this will become one of my go-to's. 

 Eggs in Purgatory



Eggs in Purgatory with Parmesan and Garlic Toast

Serves 8
1 hour 

1 can whole tomatoes
4 cloves garlic, minced
1 yellow onion, small dice
1 T sugar
1 tsp red pepper flakes
2 T red wine vinegar
Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and pepper, to taste

8 large eggs
Kosher salt and pepper
Red pepper flakes
1 cup parmesan reggiano, grated

1 cup parsley, picked

1 loaf ciabatta, sliced 1” thick
3 cloves garlic

  • Preheat the oven to 375° F.
  • Warm the sliced ciabatta directly on the rack of the oven.
  • Pull from the oven after 2-3 minutes. Rub the top side with the raw garlic clove.
  • Place toast in a basket until ready to serve.

For the marinara:

  • Place 1 T of olive oil in a medium sauce pot over medium-high heat. Add the onion, garlic and red pepper flakes. Season with salt and pepper, stir well and saute on medium heat until translucent.
  • Deglaze the pot with the vinegar, add the sugar and stir.
  • Add the tomatoes, more olive oil and season well with salt and pepper.
  • Cook on low heat for 30 minutes, stirring occasionally, breaking apart and crushing tomatoes with a wooden spoon as they soften.
  • Taste frequently and adjust seasonings as necessary.

To assemble:

  • Using the back of a spoon, form a little well in the sauce, crack an egg in the well. Repeat for all 8 eggs, making sure to give space between each egg.
  • Season each egg with salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.
  • Cover the eggs with the grated parmesan and place the pan on the center rack of the oven.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes or until the whites are cooked but the eggs are runny in the center.

To serve:

  • Garnish with the picked parsley and serve with the garlic toast.
  • Enjoy!



Naval Orange, Mandarine, Grapefruit, Lime and Fennel Salad with Pecorino, Citrus Vinaigrette

Serves 8
30 minutes

2 Naval oranges, zested (reserved)
2 mandarine oranges, zested (reserved)
2 ruby grapefruits
2 limes, zested (reserved)
1 bulb fennel, with frond

4 oz pecorino

Citrus zest from fruit above
1 tsp honey
1 T white vinegar
Juices from the citrus peels
2 oz extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and pepper, to taste

½ cup fennel frond, from above
½ cup mint, picked and torn
¼ cup parsley, picked
Extra virgin olive oil
Fleur de sel

  • Slice the top and bottom of the rind off each fruit. Stand them up and using the tip of your knife, cut the remaining rind off of all the fruit.
  • Squeeze the juice from the rind into a small mixing bowl for the vinaigrette.
  • Cut the citrus into ¼” slices cross-wise (so you have a round showing the segments)
  • Cut the ends of the fennel off, saving the frond.
  • Thinly slice the fennel bulb into ⅛” slices across.
  • In the vinaigrette bowl add the rest of the ingredients, except the olive oil.
  • Whisk to combine, drizzle in the olive oil.
  • Taste and adjust the seasonings as necessary.

To assemble:

  • On a large serving plate, arrange the citrus wheels and fennel in an artful, semi-overlapped way.
  • Drizzle the fruit and fennel with the vinaigrette. Garnish with the herbs and then shave the pecorino over top. Drizzle with some olive oil and sprinkle fleur de sel.
  • Serve and enjoy!



Grilled Romaine with Anchovy Vinaigrette, Garlic Bread Crumbs

Serves 8
30 minutes

2 heads Romaine, quartered lengthwise
Extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and black pepper

8 each anchovy fillets, packed in salt or oil
3 cloves garlic
Zest and juice of 2 lemons
2 oz Extra virgin olive oil
¼ tsp red pepper flakes
Kosher salt and pepper, to taste

1 cup bread crumbs
2 T butter
2 cloves garlic
2 T parsley, chopped
Kosher salt and pepper, to taste

Preheat the grill or grill pan over medium-high heat.

For the vinaigrette:

  • Blot the anchovies with a paper towel and finely chop.
  • Add the anchovies to a small mixing bowl.
  • Using a microplane, grate the garlic cloves over the anchovies.
  • Add the lemon zest and juice, as well as the red pepper flakes.
  • Drizzle in the olive oil until you have a thick slurry.
  • Taste, then add salt and pepper as necessary.

For the bread crumbs:

  • Heat a saute pan over medium heat.
  • Add the butter and melt completely.
  • Add the breadcrumbs, grate the garlic with the microplane directly into the pan. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Stir well with a rubber spatula to coat. Cook until golden brown.
  • Remove from the heat and stir in the chopped parsley.

For the romaine:

  • Drizzle the romaine with olive oil, salt and pepper.
  • Place each quarter on the hot grill. Once it has grill marks and the lettuce begins to wilt, flip over and cook for 30 seconds more.
  • Remove from the grill and place in a large mixing bowl.


To assemble:

  • Pour the vinaigrette over the grilled romaine and toss with your hands to coat. Be careful not to break up the sections.
  • Place on a serving platter and garnish with the breadcrumbs.
  • Serve and enjoy!!