Imagine you’re living in a small Greek village. It’s summer, the rising sun is warming the air, birds are starting their morning routine, and you are awoken by the braying of a donkey and the cackling of a proud hen that has just laid her egg for the day. What do you do? You go make breakfast, because with all that noise you aren’t falling back asleep anytime soon!
I remember the first time my mom made αυγα με ντοματες και φετα (uh… the title, eggs with tomatoes and feta. It’s also known as strapatsada.) I watched as she cooked the fresh tomatoes down to almost paste before adding the scrambled eggs. She told me this was something her mom would make during the summer months when they would move from their home in town to stay closer to their little farm further out in the country. This would be the time when vine ripened tomatoes and freshly laid eggs would be in abundance. (Serve these eggs with a toasted slice of my Sourdough Bread, another village style original!)
I honestly wasn’t too sure about what the end result would be, but it wasn’t like I was going to have a choice about eating it. It wasn’t pretty. The tomatoes turned the eggs a funky orange-ish hue and they had a faintly grainy look to them. After one bite, though, I was hooked. My mom didn’t make them often, but it was a treat when she did. A perfect way to make use of what was sure to have been abundant summer ingredients.
Eggs with Tomatoes and Feta Recipe
Amounts are per person:
- 2 eggs
- 2 Tbsp. evaporated milk
- 1/2 tsp chopped fresh Greek oregano (or 1/4 tsp dried oregano)
- 1/2 cup chopped tomatoes (any variety)
- 2-3 Tbsp crumbled feta (loosely packed)
- olive oil
- pinch of salt
Scramble eggs, milk, and oregano together and set aside. When I am making this for 3 or more people, I like to substitute white wine for a couple of the tablespoons of the evaporated milk. It adds a really nice flavor to the final dish.
Put a glug or two of olive oil in a non-stick pan (trust me, you will want the no stick). Add the chopped tomatoes and a small pinch of salt, then turn the stove on to high. I add the tomatoes before heating as it helps to avoid splattering hot oil everywhere. Once the oil starts to sizzle, bring the heat down to medium high. Push the tomatoes around occasionally to prevent scorching and cook until they are nearly paste.
Add the scrambled eggs to the pan. Do not stir for a couple of minutes, then gently push the eggs about in the pan. Once the eggs are nearly set, add the feta and gently mix in. Don’t let it cook much more at this point or the moisture from the feta will cause the eggs to become watery. Serve hot and enjoy!