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French Recipes: Scrambled Eggs with Peppers (Pipérade à la Basquaise)


This dish comes from the Basque country in the Pyrenees, piper being Basquaise for pepper.

PREP TIME: 10 min
COOK TIME: 40 min
READY TIME: 50 min

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  • 60 ml/4 tbsp bacon fat, duck fat or olive oil
  • 2 onions, coarsely chopped
  • 3 or 4 green or red peppers (or mixed), cored and chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • Small pinch of chilli powder or cayenne pepper, to taste
  • 900 g/2 lb ripe tomatoes, peeled, seeded and chopped
  • 2.5 ml/1/2 tsp dried oregano or thyme
  • 8 eggs, lightly beaten
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • Chopped fresh parsley, to garnish


1 Heat the fat or oil in a large heavy frying pan over a medium-low heat. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-7 minutes until they are softened but not browned.

2 Stir in the peppers, garlic and chilli powder or cayenne. Cook for a further 5 minutes until the peppers soften, stirring frequently.

3 Stir in the tomatoes and season with salt and pepper and the oregano or thyme. Cook over a medium heat for 15—20 minutes until the peppers are soft, the liquid has evaporated and the mixture is thick. Stir occasionally to prevent the mixture burning and sticking to the pan.

4 Add the beaten eggs to the vegetables and stir over a low heat for 5—8 minutes until the mixture is thickened and softly set. Scatter over the parsley and serve.


Make sure that you cook the peppers until the pan is almost completely dry before adding the eggs, otherwise the finished dish will be too wet.