It’s two months of A Common Table giveaways! From now until December, I’ll be sharing a recipe from the cookbook here and holding a giveaway of one of my favorite kitchen treasures used in the book every week on Instagram, and you’ll have a week to enter before the winner is announced, along with a new giveaway.
I originally found Hannah at Speck & Stone more than three years ago, probably through someone’s beautiful photos of her rustic stoneware, and ever since a big box of her gorgeous pieces arrived, they’ve graced my table and this blog in nearly every post (I could link to them all but then we’d be here all day!) not to mention the cover of A Common Table itself. For someone as clumsy as I am, buying handmade ceramics is a tricky business. I’m always tempted to save them for special occasions, tucked away where I can’t smash them (lest this happen) but Hannah’s sturdy yet beautiful pieces have become a mainstay at our meals despite all my uncoordinated tendencies. The bowl in these photos, especially, has proven itself to be pretty much the most perfect bowl I never knew I needed–the ideal size for everything from dishing up sides for a crowd to an extra big bowl of something cozy to enjoy on your own. And now Hannah has made two just like it to give away this week! This goes for all the giveaways over these couple of months but I wish I could win about five more for myself.
Speaking of an extra big bowl for one, these tomatoes and eggs are a perfect fit–and, with less than one week to go til Thanksgiving and anticipation building for all the pies and stuffing and casseroles in my near future, they’re the exact kind of simple, hearty but still light meal to tide me over til then. I suspect that for most Chinese families, tomatoes and eggs are one of those instantly recognizable but deeply homestyle dishes that every family does just a little bit differently (another take on a classic pairing!) Savory, tangy, and slightly sweet, it’s an interplay of textures between the egg curds and soft, sweet tomatoes that is the epitome, to me, of comfort food.
The recipe in A Common Table–which I forgot to explain there, but can tell you now!–incorporates a little trick from my mother. To my surprise, in writing the book I found that most other recipes for this dish call for scrambling the eggs first, setting them aside, then cooking the tomatoes and adding the egg back to the pan. My mother’s method, on the other hand, cooks the tomatoes first until jammy and fragrant. Then, after scrambling the eggs into a crepe-y, silky mass of sunshine that’s not quite done, you add the tomatoes back to the pan to finish the egg, letting the tomato juices cook into the eggs to marry the two together. With good tomatoes and pasture-raised eggs, soaked into a warm bowl of rice, there’s nothing else you need for a perfect meal.
As usual, head over to Instagram to enter the giveaway for two of Hannah’s perfect 6-inch bowls and a signed copy of the book. The giveaway ends next Saturday, November 24 at 12:00am. (And we’ll be taking a break next week for pie and stuffing, but will be back on November 30 for another giveaway!)
- 6 large eggs, beaten
- ½ teaspoon salt, or to taste, divided
- 1 to 2 tablespoon vegetable oil or other neutral oil, divided
- 2 cups (about ¾ pound) tomato wedges, or halved grape or cherry tomatoes (I like a mix)
- 1 to 2 teaspoons sugar (optional)
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper
- Whisk the eggs and ¼ teaspoon salt together until very well combined, 1 to 2 minutes. Set aside.
- In a medium saucepan or large wok, heat a tablespoon of oil over medium-high. Add the tomatoes, sugar (if using), black pepper, and another ⅛ to ¼ teaspoon salt, and cook until the skins wrinkle and the tomatoes soften and release liquid, 3 to 4 minutes. Remove from the pan and set aside. Wipe out the wok.
- In the same pan, heat another tablespoon of oil over high until shimmering. Add the beaten eggs; they should immediately sizzle in the pan. Cook briefly until a layer of egg forms on the bottom of the pan, 30 seconds to 1 minute, then use a large spatula or wooden spoon to push the cooked layer to the side, letting the uncooked egg flow underneath, and let a new layer of egg cook. This creates crepe-y layers of scrambled eggs; it’s not essential, but it’s a nice texture. Repeat until most of the egg is cooked but it’s still liquid in spots. Add the cooked tomatoes. Stir until combined, breaking the eggs into smaller pieces, and leave on the heat until the eggs are fully cooked. Adjust seasonings and serve immediately.
This is best, as with most tomato dishes, when tomatoes are in season and at their sweetest. If making it in the winter, I like to add a teaspoon or two of sugar; using grape or cherry tomatoes also goes a long way in adding a little bit of sweetness.