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Eggs in Purgatory


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 3 anchovy fillets, optional
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 2 tablespoons white wine, optional
  • 2 (398ml) cans whole cherry tomatoes*
  • 1 tablespoon pesto or chopped herbs
  • Chopped olives, sundried tomatoes, roasted red peppers, capers, or dark leafy greens optional
  • Salt & pepper
  • 6–8 eggs
  • Grated or crumbled cheese, for serving
  • Crusty bread, for serving


  1. Heat the oil in a large skillet over medium heat and add in the garlic, anchovy fillets (if using), and red pepper flakes. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes, stirring frequently, just until the garlic is softened and lightly brown and the anchovy has broken down. Stir in the wine, if using, and allow it to bubble away before adding the canned tomatoes. Bring the mixture to a simmer and cook for 10 to 15 minutes just to thicken and bring the flavours together.
  2. Stir in the pesto or herbs as well as any additional mix-ins you want to use up. Season to taste with salt and pepper and, using a spoon, make slight wells in the tomato sauce. Crack an egg into each, cover with a tight-fitting lid, turn the heat down to medium-low, and cook the eggs until the whites are firm and the yolks are still runny, about 4 to 6 minutes.
  3. Drizzle some olive oil over the eggs, scatter with cheese, and serve with hunks of crusty bread.

    Note: If you cannot find canned cherry tomatoes at your grocery store, a 796ml can of diced tomatoes will also work for this recipe.

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