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Italian Baked Eggs with Polenta and Tomato Sauce

Italian Baked Eggs with Polenta and Tomato Sauce
Italian Baked Eggs with Polenta and Tomato SauceNathan Congleton / TODAY

Chef notes

There's nothing better on a cold weekend morning than these baked eggs. They're hearty and are definitely food for the soul.

Technique tip: While your polenta is on low heat, make sure to stir the bottom every 5 minutes to prevent it from burning.

Swap option: Feel free to buy any type of jarred pepper for this recipe. Spicy, pickled or just plain roasted work well!


  • 4 cups whole milk
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/4 pound dry polenta
  • Salt, to taste
Tomato Sauce
  • 1 cup Spanish onion, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup fennel, finely chopped
  • 3/4 cup white wine
  • 1 tablespoon capers packed in brine, drained and minced
  • 1 tablespoon caper brine
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 4 cups San Marzano tomatoes, crushed
  • 4 cups polenta, cooked (recipe above)
  • 1 cup tomato sauce (recipe above)
  • 3 red bell peppers, roasted, peeled, seeds removed and sliced
  • 8 eggs
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 4 tablespoons Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
  • Seasonal market greens
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/2 lemon, juiced


For the polenta:

Combine milk, heavy cream in a pot and bring to a simmer.

Once simmering, season with salt and then whisk in polenta.

Once polenta gets thick, turn down heat to lowest possible setting and let sit.

Cook polenta for 2 hours and finish with butter and more salt if necessary.

For the tomato sauce:

In a small pot, heat olive oil, then add onions, fennel, capers and sweat until tender, about 10 minutes.

Deglaze with white wine and reduce until barely dry.

Add tomatoes and caper liquid. Let simmer for 30 minutes.

To assemble:

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Spread prepared polenta into 4 small ovenproof dishes or ramekins. Shape into a circle with a well in the middle.

Coat the polenta with a thin layer of tomato sauce.

Place roasted peppers around the dish on top of tomato sauce.

Crack the two eggs and place into the well of each dish. Season with salt and 2 turns of fresh ground black pepper. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon Parmigiano Reggiano cheese over each.

Place in oven for 4-5 minutes, depending on desired doneness of eggs.

For the garnish:

In a small bowl, dress the seasonal market greens with olive oil, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Garnish the eggs with the greens and serve.