Ever since we first visited Mexico years ago, huevos rancheros or ‘ranch eggs’ has been one of my favourite hearty breakfast dishes, both to eat and to cook. This Huevos Rancheros – Contemporary Recipe looks at the dish from a fresh angle.
Essentially the dish is made up of two corn (or sometimes flour) tortillas that are topped with two fried eggs and surrounded by a medium-strength salsa. The egg yolks are always served soft so they can be broken and mixed with the salsa. To round the dish out — or more precisely, to help kill that hangover — it’s often served with refried beans and rice.
Huevos rancheros is on just about every menu at any place that’s vaguely Mexican in Austin, but we found most versions there a little light on the chili.
As we were having an Austin-themed dinner party with some friends at our second holiday rental in Austin, I wanted to pay a little tribute to one of my favourite breakfast dishes and serve it first. Taking some cues from my Venice Weekend Eggs dish, I thought that poached eggs would work better than fried for a more elegant evening version. I tried to source some quail eggs so I could serve the whole dish on a single dessert spoon, but ran out of time. Instead I just used the smallest eggs I could find.
The dish went down a treat. In each mouthful you got a little velvety egg yolk, the chili bite of the salsa, a little crunch from the corn ‘powder’, and the robustness of the refried beans. It was such a hit with our new friends, I decided to make it my Weekend Eggs dish for Austin.
But wait! There’s more. When we recently arrived in Mexico City, I loved the light in the kitchen so much that I decided I’d also make you a short video of the dish, just to show you how easy my contemporary huevos rancheros is to make.
Ingredients and directions follow the video – video now in full HD!
Huevos Rancheros – Contemporary Recipe Video
Huevos Rancheros – Contemporary Recipe
- 2 farm-fresh free range eggs
- 2 ripe Roma tomatoes, finely chopped
- 1 small white onion, finely chopped
- 1 or 2 cloves of garlic, crushed
- 1 small chilli (your choice of heat!)
- 1 good dash of olive oil
- 4 corn tortillas (or a good couple of handfulls of corn chips, if you can’t get tortillas)
- 1 tin of refried beans (no, you don’t have to make them yourself!)
- 1 bunch cilantro…err coriander, finely chopped
- Over medium heat add the olive oil and then the onions to a pan.
- Start boiling water in a pan for the poached eggs.
- When the onions are translucent, add the garlic.
- Place the refried beans in a saucepan over low heat.
- Add the chili and then add the chopped tomatoes to the onions and garlic and let the sauce reduce.
- If you have fresh corn tortillas (you’re a lucky cook!) toast them in a pan.
- Blend the crisp corn tortillas (or corn chips) in a blender.
- Season the sauce as necessary. It should be a nice dark red.
- When the sauce is ready, poach your eggs.
- Place a decent scoop of refried beans in the bowls.
- Sprinkle a little of the corn ‘powder’ over this.
- Place the poached eggs on top.
- Spoon the salsa over the egg, leaving the yolk exposed.
- Sprinkle a little more corn ‘powder’ over the salsa and add the coriander!
- Looks pretty. Tastes even better.