Post Vacay Clean Eats

I absolutely love to travel, experiencing the many fun and unique things you can do in other places from culture to food.  But, what I do not like about travel is how I often feel upon returning home; swelling from long plane flights, belly bloat and just plain feeling fat … it is miserable!

Vacation-Family-Picture | ohfiddledeedee

Audley, Bradley and I returned from San Diego late Sunday night. While I still battle my weight (I always will), I have settled into a pattern of maintenance that keeps me feeling healthy, energetic, and happy for the most part.

An occasional “cheat” type meal fits into my lifestyle just fine, but after an entire week of spicy Mexican food, rich desserts, home cooked full breakfast each morning and a stop at In and Out Burger my body was not at all happy with me.  I have spent the last three days doing a little intermittent fasting (do a little research as it is good for you to add to your health and wellness routines from time to time), trying to detox and make my gut happy with me again.

Another way I detox is to eat really clean whole foods with ingredients that I can pronounce.  That means I prepare and cook everything that goes into my body and on our table using fresh and organic ingredients.

The easiest of all recipes is egg whites and oatmeal.  I carb-cycle (three low carb days followed by a day with two meals of heavy carb), so this delicious one-pan meal, that is so filling and satisfying, is a favorite of mine.

It’s also super easy to make and can be so versatile.**

Oatmeal-and-Egg-whites | ohfiddledeedee

Ingredients are very simple: 4 egg whites (separate these yourself, do not use the ones in a carton), 1/2 cup McCann’s Oatmeal, 2 Tablespoons Navatis Cacao powder (I found this at the Vitamin Shoppe), 1/2 cup water and a little stevia if you like it sweet.

Whisk all the ingredients together in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook until the oatmeal and egg whites reach a custardy state, stirring continuously while it cooks.

{This will stick if you aren’t paying attention.}

Top with strawberries and serve up pretty.  It’s almost like a dessert, so you never know that it’s good for you!

Eggwhites-and-oatmeal | ohfiddledeedee

**I did mention that this recipe is versatile, so here is another option:  Leave out the cacao powder and instead toss fresh diced fruit of another variety in your oatmeal.  Peaches are so good, as are any type of berry!

Your body will thank you for eating so clean and your tummy will thank you.

Clean-Eats-for-Breakfast | ohfiddledeedee

I have learned from experience food can either destroy you or heal you.  It’s all how you eat and use it!

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Saturday Brunch for Two

Saturday mornings have become quite precious to Audley and me.  He travels so much during the week for work that we have truly come to value a quiet morning together on the weekend.

 We also know these are limited as four kids have kept us hopping for years with anything from color guard competitions to swim or wrestling tournaments.

Autumn-Flowers | ohfiddledeedee

Spending quality time together is something every husband and wife should make an effort to do to keep the lines of communication open and reconnect after the chaos of life has weighed us down.  These moments are also valuable as we go through different seasons together.  We want to be on the same path, not running opposite directions!  Our marriage has always come before our children and I am ever so glad as a new season of life is fast approaching in the form of the empty nest!

Autumn-Tabletop | ohfiddledeedee

Bradley’s wrestling season begins at the end of October, so Audley and I are savoring each Saturday we have available before the chaos of Senior year wrestling season begins.

 What’s a better way to enjoy a morning together and set the mood for conversation, than a pretty table and brunch for two?

Setting the table also creates a romantic atmosphere, and couldn’t we all use a little more romance in our lives?!

Autumn-Table | ohfiddledeedee

Contrary to popular belief, brunch does not have to consist of six or eight courses of fattening pastries, heavy breads, and complicated dishes.

Believe me, you can fill up just fine on bacon, eggs, and fruit.

Saturday-Bruch-for-Two | ohfiddledeedee

Just dress it up a little!

Herb-Baked-Egg-Brunch | ohfiddledeedee

This Herbed Baked Egg dish I served up for our brunch is perfect.  It looks so elegant, yet is so simple and delicious!

It’s also very filling, which we know is most important for our guys.

Assembling the dish takes a few steps, but it still comes together rather quickly (I know you don’t want to spend all morning in the kitchen), and allows for you to multitask if you’ve planned ahead.

Keep it simple and gather your ingredients for the entire brunch first.  This includes any sides that you have chosen.  I prepared bacon and fresh berries for our brunch.

Herb Baked Egg Brunch

 

 

 

The full recipe for printing is just below my steps here.

For the herb baked egg dish, I used four eggs, heavy whipping cream, real butter, freshly grated parmesan cheese, fresh herbs (dried will work), & garlic.

 

First, I put the bacon on, then completed the first steps of the recipe by combining the herbs and parmesan cheese and melting butter and cream in an individual cocette.

{The beauty of this recipe is that you can change up the herbs to suit your taste.}

Herb-Baked-Eggs | ohfiddledeedee

As I flipped the bacon, I added the eggs and the herb mixture to the cocette.

Finally, I removed the bacon from the pan to drain on a paper towel, then removed the eggs from the oven.

{Click here — Herbed Baked Eggs for the full printable recipe.}

 Herb-Baked-Eggs-Brunch-for-Two | ohfiddledeedee

All that is left is plating your food, which is simple enough.

 

Weekend-Brunch-for-Two | ohfiddledeedee

The romantic in me planned ahead for our brunch together and set a pretty table, but you can serve up brunch on paper plates if it works better for you.

 The idea is to spend a little quality time together without too much fuss.

Herb-Baked-Eggs-Brunch | ohfiddledeedee

You’ll enjoy the time and I know your spouse will as well.

What are some ways you and your spouse like to connect with one another?

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Easy Breakfast Souffle’

Sometimes when we are meal planning we choose a recipe with a bazillion pictures that requires visiting four different markets to gather the vast amount of ingredients we need to cook a gourmet dinner.

enamelware-by-Lodge | oh-fiddle-dee-dee

And sometimes, often when we are home alone, we just open up the refrigerator, cross our fingers that there are enough ingredients to make a delicious breakfast just because we have these cute miniature enamel-coated cast iron cocottes that we are eager to use!

{Hey!  It happens!}

lodge-enamelware-cocoette | oh-fiddle-dee-dee

COCOETTE:  a covered, heatproof dish or casserole in which food can be both cooked and served; a Dutch oven.  via google

These “luck of the draw” concoctions as I call them are often the most delicious meals I put on the table.

{Or eat in the living room while watching Netflix…}

For my latest concoction, I rifled through the refrigerator to find eggs from Dad & Mom’s little farm, heavy whipping cream, cherry tomatoes, prosciutto, onion and parmesan cheese.  Perfect ingredients for a breakfast soufflé for one and would be perfect in my little dish.

breakfast |oh-fiddle-dee-dee

For this breakfast for one you don’t even really need a recipe!

Eggs and cream form your base; the rest of the ingredients are at your discretion.

Taking a tablespoon of grass-fed butter I melted it in the little dish, adding a little chopped Vidalia with a little fresh garlic and sautéed it briefly.  While that was sautéing, I whisked 3 eggs with a couple of tablespoons of the cream, and chopped up two little tomatoes.

breakfast-souffle-for-one | oh-fiddle-de-dee

Removing the dish from the hot eye I poured the egg into it, whisking the garlic and onion in the mixture, added the chopped tomato, a little prosciutto and shredded Parm cheese to the mix.

I added a little salt & pepper, popped it into the oven set at 350 until it was set (about 20 minutes) and voila!

breakfast-souffle | oh-fiddle-dee-dee

 

An Easy-peasy breakfast for one in my cute little Lodge cocotte.

{Topped with fresh basil because it was just so pretty!}

Do you ever just open the refrigerator and throw something together?  What are your “luck of the draw” specials?

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Momma’s Easy Monkey Bread

When I was a little girl Momma used to occasionally treat us with something sweet for breakfast on school mornings.  Although I am sure she found this recipe in a magazine (no internet in the 1980’s), I always looked forward to her version of Monkey Bread and gobbled it down like a little piggy!

It was one of the few mornings I would be on time to the kitchen table for breakfast!

easy monkey bread4

I love this recipe for so many reasons:  It is so easy to prepare that you can’t mess it up, you can prep it ahead of time so that you just have to pop it in the oven in the morning, it makes for a delicious treat to start the day, and the kids will eat it up!

It’s also something that takes me back 25 years to my own school days when life really was so much more simple!  Sometimes I love a good walk down memory lane.

Today I’m sharing this super easy casserole style recipe that graced our table many a school morning.  Maybe it’ll bring a smile to your family as well!

Easy Monkey Bread

INGREDIENTS:

1 can large biscuits (I used Annie’s Organic biscuits)

3/4 stick butter

2/3 cup brown sugar

pecans, chopped

cinnamon, optional

monkey bread ingredients

RECIPE INSTRUCTIONS:

**Quarter your biscuits (kitchen scissors make this so easy) and layer in a 8 x8 pan sprayed with Bakers Joy or other nonstick cooking spray.

assembling monkey bread

**Sprinkle the layer of brown sugar over the biscuits.

assembling monkey bread3

**Slice the butter into pieces and place on top of the sugar, then sprinkle with pecans.  If you would like, shake a little cinnamon across the top for added flavor.

assembling monkey bread5

I was actually out of Brown Sugar when I prepared this and substituted Splenda Brown Sugar blend… It worked perfectly!

**Bake at 350° about 30-35 minutes, watching carefully because this has the potential to scorch!

esay monkey bread3

Use a large serving spoon to plate this sweet breakfast and let your babies indulge!

easy monkey bread2

FYI, I would keep this breakfast a secret, especially if you have served it on test day.  The teachers may not like you very much!

monkey bread

Have a fabulous Thursday!

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