He says, she says: Baked Egg & Popped Beans



It came in the mail, courtesy of the publisher: the French translation of Jamie Oliver’s latest opus: Everyday Super Food, or Superfood pour tous les jours. Which, given that I had just launched a new blog series about healthy eating entitled “He Says, She Says” (where Monsieur and I try to cook better-for-you recipes despite our contrary food preferences) was quite the coincidence.

In it, Oliver explains that he became interested in eating better around the time he turned 40, and set about writing this book with a team of nutritionists. Since I literally had all the ingredients for the very first recipe of the sizeable breakfast section (I’ve rarely seen a book so devoted to breakfast, which is a plus for this breakfast-loving girl), I decided to cook the book on the very next Sunday. And, as usual, Monsieur and I talked it over… Okay, not really. He was busy playing one of his games on the iPad and mostly answered in grunts. He was eating though, so that counts, right?



Me: So, Oliver decided to do what so many of us try to do: eat healthy Monday through Friday, then indulge with more gourmet food on weekends. He does seem to have lost weight on the cover, is that too shallow to point out? I must say, a LOT of recipes in this book look delicious.

(Crickets, crickets.)

Me again: You’re not a fan of canned beans, unless they’re baked in maple syrup. How do you like this?

Him (never glancing up from his iPad): It’s good.

Me: If you wanted to make this less healthy, which is not the idea but I can’t help interfering (he snorts), you could break a hot Italian sausage out of its casing, crumble the meat then fry it without fat or anything before you add in the beans, and then go back to following the recipe.

Him: It’s good.

Me (okay, so I’m stubborn): I might have put a little too much sriracha cause I was looking for the perfect dots for the pix. (I hiccup as I speak because hot pepper, which I love, gives me the hiccups when I overdo it.)

Him (finally looking up with a sarcastic eye at my food blogger predicament): You’ll be fine.

Me: Thanks for the support (I mutter). This looks elaborate but it was actually quick to make. On a Sunday morning only, weekday I’m too rushed usually.

Him: Takes about the same time as my usual omelet. Did you respect the ingredients and all?

Me: Pretty much. I used a mix of regular and cherry tomatoes, all red, since I didn’t have multicoloured small tomatoes. And I added green onions, since we had some fresh from the farm. We don’t have cottage cheese, so that’s light labneh on the toast. He makes you mix the tomatoes first in a bowl, but I don’t see why. Next time, I’ll just panfry the beans, then add the rest. Saves on dirty bowls too, and I hate washing dishes as we know.





Him: Oh we know. It’s good (back to looking at his screen).

Me: Is it a keeper? Ahem (clearing my throat), so a keeper?

Him: Yeah yeah, it’s good.

Me: … Like I got that 10 minutes ago.

Note: The recipe that follows has been lightly adapted, with suggestions to remove an extra step which I found superfluous. Unless someone cares to prove me wrong. Enjoy!


  • 1. Cut cherry tomatoes in halves or regular tomatoes in large cubes. (Here, Oliver makes you combine them with the oil, lemon, salt and a few basil leaves to marinate. Next time, I'll skip the extra dirty bowl and dump all with the beans honestly.)
  • 2. Heat oil in a large nonstick pan. Drain beans and add in with fennel and pepper. Cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the beans start roasting and popping lightly.
  • 3. Add in tomatoes and 100 ml water (plus oil, lemon juice, salt and some basil leaves if you don't believe in saving dirty dishes like I do). Boil over high heat for 1 minute.
  • 4. Push bean stew to one side and break eggs in pan. Cover and, over medium-low heat, cook 3-4 minutes or to taste.
  • 5. Toast bread and spread with ricotta (or labneh). Serve all, topped with more basil leaves and drizzled with balsamic cream or hot sauce.