Panko-Fried Heirloom Tomatoes con Caprese and a Boiled “Poached” Egg

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So I’ve been trying to figure out what my next post would be because, as I mentioned before, my GoogleDocs is starting to pile up with things I’ve been making lately, with the lack of time I have to post on here.  There is this 30 day challenge thing that is going around on twitter that a lot of food bloggers are participating in but which I didn’t find out about until it had already started and let’s face it, I already have a lot on my plate with this little thing called the Bar Exam.

So, even though I missed out on the 30 day challenge, I thought I would follow the theme today, which was “Breakfast”.  One of my favorite things in the world is a Caprese (also known as a tomato/mozzarella salad).  The Caprese gets its name from “Capri” in Italy, which many of you have probably heard of, as it is famous for having incredible beaches.  Capri, and its neighbor, Sorrento, are also famous for having fantastic mozzarella cheese.  I have had the pleasure of spending some time in Sorrento and can attest to  the quality of the mozzarella (and the limoncello).  But I digress…the point is, “Caprese” means that it is in the style of Capri and it is quite possibly one of the most refreshing delicious “salads” that I never get sick of.

I also love eggs.  Poached, fried, scrambled, omelets, I really don’t care…I love them all ways (except raw).  When I lived in Baltimore, there was this precious place that my friends and I used to go to for brunch that served a spin on Eggs Benedict that involved crab and a fried green tomatoes.  If you are ever in Baltimore, go to Miss Shirley’s and try it…you won’t regret it. The last thing you need to know is that I was shopping at Fresh Market and they had these beautiful heirloom tomatoes that I could not resist.  Aren’t they just so beautiful?

I decided to kind of combine these ideas into one plate and see what it got me.  Enough talking, here’s what happened:
The Elements:

2 heirloom tomatoes
1/4 cup milk
1/4 cup all purpose flour
1 beaten egg
2/3 cup panko bread crumbs
2-4 tbs. olive oil
salt
pepper
1-2 slices of mozzarella
fresh basil
1 egg still in shell
about 1/2 tsp of shallots

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Procedure:
Make the panko-fried tomatoes–[Recipe adapted from Simply Recipes’ recipe for fried green tomatoes]
Slice the tomatoes into about 1/2 inch slices (I only made two fried slices)
Season the tomato slices with salt and pepper and let stand for 15 minutes
Place the milk, flour, eggs, and panko crumbs into separate bowls
Heat 2 tbs of olive oil in a pan over medium heat
Dip the tomato slices in the milk, flour, eggs, and panko, fully covering both sides of the tomatoes
Fry the tomatoes for approximately 6 minutes on each side until they are brown and crispy

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While the tomato slices were frying, I started making the boiled “poached” egg [a simple recipe from Julia Child’s Mastering the Art of French Cooking, a book given to me for my birthday]
Bring about 2 quarts of water to a boil
Boil a large egg for 6 minutes (7 minutes if it is cold)
When the 6 minutes (or 7) have passed, drain out the hot water and immerse the egg in cold water so that it’s easy to crack and take the shell off
Sprinkle with salt and pepperWhile the egg and tomatoes were cooking, I sliced a couple pieces of fresh mozzarella and cut some fresh basil off of the plant on my porch (yes I grow my own and it’s a struggle when it’s 95 degrees out almost every day)
I also made the salsa to rim the plateTo make the salsa:
Take remaining heirloom tomatoes and cut them into medium sized chunks
Place in a mixing bowl and add in some finely chopped shallots, fresh basil slivers, salt, pepper, and a splash of olive oil (and balsamic should you desire some)

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To compose the plate:
Place the fried heirloom tomato slices on top of one another
I then place one slice of mozzarella, a half slice of heirloom tomato, and another slice of mozzarella on top of that
Then I placed the basil on top of the mozzarella and gently put the egg on top of it all
I next spread the salsa around the rim of the plate

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After all that, it was definitely time to eat!The Verdict:  Fantastic.  Would absolutely make again.  I have been making this boiled “poached” egg on a regular basis because I haven’t quite mastered making a perfect poached egg yet (hopefully one day soon!) and it’s quite possibly the easiest way to make an egg.  One thing I would change is to not cook the egg for the additional minute.  My egg yolk wasn’t as runny as I would have liked, and I have done it since then, for less time, and the egg yolk turns out much better!

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