Want to make it better? Add a fried egg

A fried egg over a roasted eggplant dish at Oceanos Restaurant in Fair Lawn, N.J.

This is something I preach, but I don’t always remember to practice. With fresh eggs available from the farm across the street, the Blue Hen and a bunch of other places, there’s no excuse.

Fried eggs make everything better — which I was reminded of Sunday as my wife and I dined at Oceanos Restaurant in Fair Lawn, N.J., one of my favorite restaurants from my time in New Jersey.

Minutes after we slipped into our booth for the first time in about a year, owner Peter Pantaleakis sent out a special brunch dish: Roasted eggplant, stuffed with tomatoes and bechamel, and topped with a beautiful, just-set fried egg.

We didn’t need to eat anything beyond that (though we did).

Fried eggs make everything better. I started to realize that about eight years ago when a Fatburger opened near our New Jersey home. For 75 cents, I could add a fried egg, and basked in the extra chew provided by the egg white and silkiness brought by a yolk oozing all over my turkey burger.

Fried rice, from a New York Times recipe. Photo from The New York Times.

Where else could eggs go? On toast? Of course. Atop pasta? Sure. Over sauteed greens? Absolutely. And I loved the concept of this recipe for fried rice from The Minimalist column in The New York Times (looks good on video, too).

And now we know it also can go over eggplant. (Though not this eggplant!)

At camp, we lack the equipment to turn out perfect fried eggs en masse, so you won’t see them for most retreats. But later this fall, when we have some intimate groups of eight or 12, it’s just possible dinner will be crowned by an egg.


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