Scrambled eggs are forever
It looks to be one of those belt-tightening years. Gastronomically speaking, that can be depressing. Visions of lentil-heavy gruel and endless bowls of pasta dance in the head.
No need to shell out
Far preferable to this is the mighty egg. Don't scoff at eggs as a serious meal. If they're good enough for James Bond to eat at night in a posh casino, I think they're good enough for the rest of us (I know there are many who take serious offence at the almost ludicrous escapism and all-round political incorrectness of Ian Fleming and his alter ego, but I think that, like eggs, the whole lot should be taken with a generous pinch of salt).
Those who read Fleming's books will know that 007 is an avid fan of scrambled eggs. Indeed, it is the meal most eaten across all the books, and the world's most famous assassin will happily eat them at any time of day.
Though he does encounter some sumptuous feasts through travels in exotic locales, Bond likes things simple on the food front (another favourite meal of his is spag bol). I love this about the books; the action is almost always generously peppered with descriptions of meals.
The Bond movies, on the other hand, drop almost all food outings. So, so wrong!
Anyway, the point is, eggs are brilliant. From elegant Eggs Benedict and cheese soufflé, to eggy rice and home-made mayo, it seems there is hardly anything eggs can't do.
And happily, the health authorities in many countries are slowly coming to their senses about saturated fat, and are increasingly happy for us to scoff eggs daily. Please make sure yours are as free range as possible.
If you want to know exactly how Bond likes his eggs (which is of course to say the way Fleming liked his eggs), here's the recipe, from Fleming's short story 007 in New York (I've changed ounces to grams to save your sanity, and you can skip the Taittinger to save the budget).
Serves 4. 12 fresh eggs, salt and pepper (I think we should assume white pepper), 150g to 180g fresh butter. Break the eggs into a bowl. Beat thoroughly with a fork and season well. In a small copper (or heavy bottomed) saucepan melt 120g of the butter. When melted, pour in the eggs and cook over a very low heat, whisking continuously with a small egg whisk. While the eggs are slightly more moist than you would wish for eating, remove the pan from heat, add rest of butter and continue whisking for half a minute, adding the while finely chopped chives or fines herbes. Serve on hot buttered toast in individual copper dishes (for appearance only) with pink champagne (Taittinger) and low music.