Tarragon Dippy Eggs

Tescos have announced that they will stop sourcing eggs from caged hens by 2025, not exactly round the corner but at least it’s a step in the right direction. Hopefully, the other supermarkets will follow suit. Good for Lucy Gavaghan, the 14-year-old girl who has started a petition calling for an end to ‘cruel, unnatural and inhumane’ farming methods. We can all take a leaf out of her book by helping the campaign by only buying free range eggs rather than battery or caged. There are some compelling reasons to choose pastured free range eggs vs caged eggs, and not just for the welfare issues. The level of nutrition in free-range eggs are being shown to be significantly better as well. We use Cotswold legbar eggs from Clarence court – these are amazing eggs, they have light blue shells and a deep orange yolk that is rich and creamy, and you seriously notice the difference in taste – even in baking. At home we both have Legbars as well as bantams and silkies – a very funny bread who have fluffy feet, only lay small eggs but are very entertaining. This recipe is all about the yolk – so highly recommend free range organic, and if you can get your hands on Cotswold legbars even better (they come in a blue box from Waitrose, wholefoods and Morrison’s). This is more of a weekend brunch egg dish, it feels quite indulgent but also light due to the whisking of the egg whites – almost like a soufflé, so not as heavy as your usual baked egg that’s full of cream. We would serve it with sourdough soliders – its nice to use a chewy bread, with lots of salted butter.


    Serves 4 

    Knob of butter 
    2 leeks, finely chopped 
    2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped 
    1 chilli, finely chopped 
    2 tsp Dijon mustard
    bunch tarragon, woody stalks removed, left roughly chopped 
    200g ricotta 
    50g grated parmesan 
    4 Free range eggs 

    4 oven-proof ramekins


1. Heat the oven to 200c 2. Split the eggs – put the whites into a medium bowl and the yolks onto a lightly oiled plate (this is to stop them sticking as you will need them later), careful not to pop the yolk 3. Place the butter in a pan and melt over a medium heat, add the leeks, garlic and chilli for a few minutes until starting to caramelize. Take off the heat and add the mustard, tarragon, ricotta and seasoning and combine, leave to one side. 4. Whisk the egg whites till soft peaks then carefully add the ricotta mixture buy using a metal spoon. 5. Place all 4 ramekins in front of you and spoon the mixture into all 4, about two thirds of the way up the ramekin. Then carefully place one egg yolk on top of the mixture. Very carefully spoon the remanding mixture on top of each yolk 6. Place the ramekins onto a tray and put in oven for 10 mins. Serve immediately with buttery soldiers