BY PAMELA FOSTER

This simple dish can also be served as an appetizer at lunch or casual dinner. Without the truffle oil, it is very much like Toad in the Hole. (In Season 3  of Downton Abbey, the servants are given the rare opportunity to enjoy this taste sensation.) Double the recipe to share with a loved one.

Ingredients:

(Makes 1)

-- 1 inch+ thick slice of square
-- good quality bread (I prefer whole grain)
-- 2 egg yolks
-- Melted unsalted butter or EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
-- ¼ cup grated fontina cheese (or other cheese)
-- 1 tsp. truffle oil (or olive oil if you don’t have any)
-- Freshly ground salt and ground black pepper

Instructions:

1. Preheat the oven to 500°F.

2. Cut the crusts off the bread and lightly brush melted butter/oil on all sides of the bread. Using a sharp knife cut a shallow square well into the centre of the bread, by cutting an outline and then scooping out the middle.

3. Butter an oven safe frying pan or well-used baking sheet (it could get messy), and place the bread on the buttered surface.

4. Distribute the grated fontina evenly around the well, then carefully add the egg yolks on top.

5. Bake for 3 minutes or until the cheese has melted, the bread has toasted, and the eggs have set a bit.

6. Remove from the oven, stir the runny yolks and drizzle the truffle oil on the surface. Finish with freshly ground salt and pepper on top.

7. Serve hot.

Pamela Foster is a culinary historian who resides in the Greater Toronto Area with her husband, affectionately referred to as Lord D. Her popular blog Downton Abbey Cooks explores food, history and health of the Downton era (1912- 1920s). And be sure to check out Pamela's Weekly Downton Dish column on VisionTV.

A signed copy of her ecookbook Abbey Cooks Entertain can be downloaded from her website and regular copies from Kobo or Amazon.ca. (Get a sneak peek here.)

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