Huevos rancheros, shakshuka, and their variants are all grand eggs ‘n chili dishes. But this Indian version of scrambled eggs is in a league of its own. It’s called Anda Bhurji and will likely shoot to the top of your brunch favorites.
Think of how you like your ‘standard’ scrambled eggs — maybe beaten with a little milk, salt, and pepper and then gently cooked with a knob of butter. Great hey? Now imagine mixing the eggs with some coconut milk and scrambling them with a mix of gently sautéed chili, onion, garlic, cumin, turmeric, and a dash of lime juice. Yum.
Garnish those eggs with chopped cilantro and thinly sliced scallions and you’ll have seriously taken your brunch eggs to new heights.
Don’t go light on the hot peppers
Anda Bhurji is surely at its stellar best when you’re pretty bold with the hot peppers, in this case the cayenne chilies. Here’s why. The richness of the egg and coconut milk can handle a surprising amount of fiery heat before losing flavor-control to the chilis.
That calming of the chilies’ full-on heat is also helped by the buttery flat breads served alongside the eggs. Naan bread would be my first choice. But any type of warmed flatbread that pairs well with a good slathering of butter will be just fine.
The rich flavors of buttery flatbreads add another foil to the chilies’ fire, but they don’t conflict with the tastes of the spicy eggs. For me, something like toasted sourdough or wholegrain bread just doesn’t have that essential background subtlety.
And that garnish of cilantro and scallions? Well, you’ll get aroma, flavor, and good looks from the cilantro. The scallion slivers also look great, but — much more importantly — they’ll add a fresh crunch to the eggs and a gentle boost of slightly peppery onion.
Anda Bhurji is quick to make
Served like that, these galactically good eggs hardly need a crowning glory. But they do have one: speed and simplicity in their cooking. And, after all, isn’t that a top priority for a proper grown-up brunch?
And by ‘proper’, I mean something that’s going to pick you up when you’re feeling blue — especially if you are perhaps slightly regretting having had just one too many the night before…
Anda Bhurji – Spicy Brunch Eggs
For the bhurji mix
- 2 cayenne peppers chopped into ¼ inch slices, seeds and all
- 2 red onions halved, peeled, and thinly sliced
- 3 cloves garlic peeled and finely sliced
- 1 inch fresh ginger peeled and finely diced
- 1 teaspoon ground turmeric
- 2 teaspoons ground cumin
- 2 tablespoons salted butter
- 1 teaspoon ground sea salt heaped
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper heaped
- 2 tablespoons fresh lime juice approximately the juice of one lime
For the eggs
- 10 fresh eggs large
- 1 cup coconut milk
For the flatbreads
- 4 buttery flatbreads one per person
- Extra butter to your taste I like to spread maybe a level teaspoon of soft butter all over one side of the breads before warming them
For the garnish
- 2 spring onions thinly sliced on the diagonal – all the white stems and all the crisp, green stalks
- ½ ounce fresh cilantro finely chopped, stems and all
Cooking the bhurji mix
- Set a broad skillet onto a low-medium heat and add 2 level tablespoons of butter. As soon as it starts to foam, add the thinly sliced onions and stir well so they get coated in the hot butter. Drop the heat to low and cook the onions for 5 minutes with a few stirs. You want to soften them but not brown them.
- Now add all the other bhurji ingredients except the lime juice. Stir and continue to cook gently on a low heat for another 5 minutes. Done – remove from the heat.
Warming the flat breads
- Really easy. Set the buttery breads on a serving plate in the microwave. Two minutes heating on a medium setting will be fine. Leave them in the microwave to keep warm. Time now for eggs.
Cooking the eggs
- Break the eggs into a mixing bowl and add the coconut milk. Beat the mix so that the egg yolks, whites, and coconut milk are thoroughly combined.
- Set the skillet with the softened bhurji mix onto a low heat. Stir the mix and let it heat up for 90 seconds.
- Now add the beaten eggs to the skillet – heat still on low. Stir the eggs so that they combine completely with the bhurji mixture.
- Continue gently stirring until the eggs almost reach the consistency that you like your scrambled eggs to have. I say almost because even after you remove the skillet from the heat, the eggs will continue to cook – get thicker – in the heat retained by the skillet.
- Add the lime juice and give your completed Anda Bhurji a final stir. Serve at once with a sprinkle of cilantro and scallions over the top of the eggs and the warm flatbreads alongside them.