Oeufs En Cocotte…On Quack

While most women get hot and heavy over French designer labels such as Chanel, Louis Vuitton or Christian Lacroix, my heart skips a beat for a different kind of haute couture. Frankly, I’m quite appalled that it wasn’t seen on the designer runways last month.

While the glitzy NYC Fashion Week has ended, our favorite designer labels just came fresh off the runway this past weekend. The airport runway, that is. When his father arrived on Saturday, he came armed with a luggage full of goodies. From a delectable box of Ladurée macarons straight out of Paris to specialty linen from Basque designer Jean Vier, we ogled at this season’s hottest trends.

Amidst the stockpile of presents were two little shoebox-like containers emblazoned with bright red letters. As we slowly lifted the cardboard lid, it was as if a celestial glow radiated from within while cherubs began to sing. Tucked inside was a perfect cherry-red mini cocotte from the ultimate cast iron designer, Staub. Along came an adorable little note from his sister telling us how she had harassed all the stores from Bordeaux to Bayonne to find these ruby gems.

We also have searched high and low but to no avail. While most gourmet shops carry Le Creuset, the Staub mini cocottes are diamonds in the rough. Although both are French labels, the American market seems to be heavily saturated with Le Creuset where as Staub is the brand for “those in the know”. Both are equally comparable but we always prefer the roads less travelled.

I have so many great plans for our shiny new toys but why not christen them with the most classic of all mini cocotte dishes? These oeufs en cocotte can be as creative as an omelette with various fillings or plain, if you prefer. I wanted to be as close to the French roots as possible so I used chanterelle mushrooms and creme fraîche served with a side of mouillette (a baguette cut into thin strips for dipping into the runny yolk). This makes for a delicious brunch that’s light enough to keep you from going right back to bed!


2 fresh duck eggs
1 cup sliced leeks (white and light green parts only)
1 cup chanterelle mushrooms
4 Tbsp creme fraîche
salt & pepper
baguette, cut into thin strips (for dipping)
chives (optional)
  1. In a medium skillet, saute leeks in olive oil for 2-3 minutes (until it begins to wilt). Add chanterelle and saute another 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Remove from heat and set aside.
  2. In a deep saute pan, bring about 2 inches of water to a boil – fill it enough so that when the cocottes are placed inside, the water goes half way up the side. Meanwhile, place one tablespoon of creme fraîche at the bottom of each mini cocotte (or ramekin of equal size). Next, divide the leek and chanterelle mixture in half and add on top of the creme fraîche. Add another tablespoon of creme fraîche in each cocotte. Finally, crack one egg on top of each serving (keep the yolk in tact). Season with salt and pepper.
  3. Gently place each mini cocotte in the boiling water and cook until the whites are opaque, about 10-15 minutes (do not place a lid on the pan!). Once the eggs are done, carefully remove from the water. Garnish with chopped chives and a sprinkle of coarse sea salt. Serve with toasted baguette cut into thin strips for the mouillette for dipping.

28 Responses to “Oeufs En Cocotte…On Quack”

  • Cooking Rookie Says:

    Amazing pictures! I also love your mini cocottes – so pretty :-) and it’s a perfect size for a dish.
    And the recipe is great too, but I’m afraid I won’t be able to make it – where do you get duck eggs :-)?! Do they taste any different from their chicken egg cousins?

  • Malisa Says:

    Yum! I love how cute the cocottes are. And I was going to invest in Le Creuset. Thankfully because of Dhale, I am now in the know. :)

  • Divina Says:

    Those are fabulous. I would probably make oeufs en cocotte everyday. The photos are fabulous.

  • Sook @ My Fabulous Recipes Says:

    Beautiful photos! I haven’t tried cooking much with eggs but it looks like you have so many great ideas about using eggs to create beautiful, delicious dishes. Yummy!

  • Lindsay Says:

    Macarons from Paris? You’re one lucky daughter!

  • grace Says:

    clothes shlmothes–gimme kitchen toys and foodstuff any day! your simply but elegantly prepared eggs look wonderful. :)

  • "One Mum" Says:

    Magnifique ! Titoune et “le garçon livreur” sont bien récompensés par ce beau résultat !
    Au retour du prochain voyage, on attend bananes et ananas mijotés en cocotte….

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Cooking Rookie: Thanks! If duck eggs are not available, you can certainly use the good ‘ol chicken eggs. I just like to add a slightly different twist by using duck eggs which are larger. They have thicker yolks too and I LOVE it! I found mine at Whole Foods and I’ve also purchased them before from Dean & Deluca. But like I said, chicken eggs will be perfect too!

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Malisa: I definitely recommend investing in a Dutch oven and a few mini cocottes. They’ll last you a lifetime!

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Divina: Thank you!!! Oeufs en cocotte are easy enough to make everyday! I think they’d be great too if you were hosting brunch for friends.

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Lindsay: In-law 😉 And indeed we are spoiled rotten!

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Grace: Same here! Our Staub collection is about as bad as some women’s shoe closets! Can’t get enough :) And thank you!!!

  • Stella Says:

    This looks wonderful-I don’t know if one can even get duck eggs where I live, but I bet one of the local farms might have them. This has inspired me to find out!

  • Tasty Trix Says:

    What a great new toy you have! I love oeufs en cocotte, but have not had them with duck eggs. Our stupid Whole Foods does not carry them, and it annoys me to no end. I must find some! Love the photos (as always!)

  • chocolate shavings Says:

    Those eggs look perfect and those Staub cocottes are too cute!

  • Christine @ Fresh Local and Best Says:

    I love Staub, and those mini cocottes are perfect!

  • Samantha @ The Savvy Soybean Says:

    You just blew my mind with this. It looks fantastic!! I’ve never cooked with duck egg before… is the flavor quite different?

    Your pictures are gorgeous, by the way. I’ll definitely be checking back.

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Stella: If you have any gourmet shops in your area you can give them a try. But if you have farms nearby, then that’s even better! I’d have to take a train upstate to find any farms around here :) . Good luck on your search!

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Tasty Trix: I love these cocottes! So many recipes, so little time… Too bad your WF doesn’t carry them. I guess I lucked out with ours. Sometimes they even sell ostrich and emu eggs! Thanks T :)

    I’ll be back in a couple weeks!

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Chocolate Shavings: Thank you!!! I have a feeling this is the beginning of my mini cocotte collection… forget the shoes!

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Christine: I love that you’re a Staub fan too!

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Samantha: Duck eggs are not too different from regular eggs. The shells are a bit tougher to crack, the actual egg is a tad bit larger and the yolk is thicker. I like to throw it in my recipes for a unique twist.

    And thanks so much for your wonderful compliments! Looking forward to seeing you on here more often :) I’m leaving for Costa Rica tomorrow but I’ll magically post a few entries here and there while I’m away 😉

  • Tiny Urban Kitchen Says:

    I love love love the runny eggs! And as always, your pictures are beautiful. :) Now you’re making me want one of those mini cocottes . . but man, I need to buy a Dutch oven first! Darn tiny kitchen with limited space!

  • Dhale @ Culinary Musings Says:

    @Tiny Urban Kitchen: Just get the mini and the regular ones. The mini cocottes fit snuggly inside the large dutch oven ;). I keep all of my excess kitchen pots/cocottes/dutch oven underneath our living room sofa! You can get pretty creative with storage when we have such tiny kitchens!

  • Spicy Green Mango Says:

    So darn cute! I’ve been eye-ing the Le Creuset minis, but they’re a whopping $80 or something, so I had to forego the shopping on a whim. Red is so adorably classic!

  • jyoti Says:

    I was trying to find out what to use these little guys for – and this post pretty much has me sold!

  • Jim @ Le Creuset Dutch Oven Says:

    To quote Anthony Bourdain, I am a total egg slut. Putting this recipe on my list egg dishes to try ASAP! Thanks for sharing your story and recipe.

  • i love cocottes Says:

    Hi! May I know the exact colour of these cocottes as written on the boxes or something? Thank You! :)

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