Deconstructed Omelets

One of my resolutions for this year was to continuing working on my lifestyle change and weight loss.  It’s a real challenge to eat cleanly when it is so much easier to pour a bowl of Special K or hit a drive thru when things get busy.  I’ve discovered it takes a conscious effort to eat correctly.  No more mindless or shortcut eating.
I have gotten into the habit of eating breakfast every day (it’s easy to do once the kiddos are out the door), but I am actually trying to encourage the kids and Audley to take the time for breakfast.  While I’ve not mastered the cooking on week days perfectly yet, I have gotten into the habit of cooking on the weekends and other days the kids are out of school.
I was browsing a fitness site not too long ago and saw a picture for some very appetizing & pretty deconstructed omelets.
You may wonder hat I mean by a “deconstructed” omelet, so I’ll explain.  Instead of chopping & mixing all of the ingredients together in a bowl and cooking, you cook and arrange the same ingredients in a different form.
{I had to learn that term after hearing it used on my favorite cooking show, “Top Chef”.}
The whole omelet concept sounded absolutely delicious, so naturally I had to give them a try while everyone was home for the holidays.

They were super easy to make.

 

Ingredients:
medium eggs
1 each red & green bell peppers
1 tomato
fresh herbs of your choosing (I used basil)
olive oil
freshly ground black pepper

Core the bell peppers and slice into rings about 1/4-1/3 inch thick & thinly slice your tomato, cutting each slice in half.

 

Heat a cast iron skillet on medium-high heat, and add just a tablespoon of olive oil to the pan.  When the pan is sizzling hot, add one of the pepper rings, placing a slice of tomato inside.  Next, crack an egg into the pepper ring & over the tomato, letting it fill up (it will run over a bit).  Add a little black pepper to the top.

Cover the skillet with a lid and let the egg cook, 2-3 minutes, depending on how done you like your eggs.  I like mine a little runny.

 

Carefully scoop from the pan and serve up on a plate, topping it with fresh basil.

 

That’s it.  Easy peasy and pretty like flowers.

 

My two veggie eaters loved them, my picky one just snarled her nose.
It was her loss.
What do you like to cook for breakfast?
Linking up with Foodie Friday and On the Menu Monday this week.
 

Time For Breakfast!

I have always been a get up and go person in the mornings, but breakfast is quickly becoming a very important meal in our house.  One thing I have learned over the last four months is the breakfast really does affect how you function throughout the day.  From energy levels to brain function, when I have breakfast I find that I am not starving to death by lunch, I can think better in the mornings instead of living in a fog, and I am eating much more realistic portions for other meals throughout the day,
Breakfast isn’t alway easy.  Most of us sleep as late as we possibly cant before rushing out of the house to our appointments.
{I am so GUILTY!!}
 
I know, breakfast is so “Leave It to Beaver” or “Father Knows Best”, but I also know the obesity rate was much lower,  family’s were much closer, and children had energy to make it through the day during the time breakfast was definitely played up as an important part of American lives. 
 
 
Could there possibly be a relationship? 
 
Taking 15 extra minutes each morning for a bowl of oatmeal (McCann’s Irish Oats are my favorite) with a handful of fresh berries, or actually cooking a healthy breakfast is well worth getting up a little earlier.  Stay away from processed cereals.  They have a lot of sugar in them and truly offer little nutritional value despite what ads on the television suggest.  Right now my three kiddos are into whole wheat toast topped with homemade strawberry jam or apple butter ( and next week will have blackberry & peach to choose from, as well). Served with homemade turkey (breast) sausage they have a fairly balanced meal.  It’s not a huge meal by any means, but it gives us a little time together before the day begins.
My favorite breakfast is a fresh omelet.  Loaded with protein, egg omelets are a perfect and easy way to enjoy a filling breakfast in the morning.  With all the options for filling your omelet, the possibilities are endless for flavor!
So, in three easy steps, here is my favorite breakfast omelet.
 
1. Whisk spinach, tomato, onion, mushrooms together with 3 egg whites and 1 whole egg. Season with Mrs. Dash garlic and herb seasoning.
 
2. In a small non-stick skillet sprayed with Pam, cook the egg mixture until the bottom is set. Carefully flip the eggs like a pancake.
3. When completely set, fold in half and serve with salsa, hot sauce or just a little freshly ground black pepper. Filling and delicious!
 
Since it is garden season, I love the flavor of fresh tomato and onion I have grown, but add in the flavor of fresh jalapeño and you have a wonderful flavor sensation!

 

 

 
I’m linking up with Foodie Friday this week!  Scramble on over and see what else is cooking.
 
 
 
So tell me, do you have breakfast in the mornings?  What is your favorite dish to serve?

 

How to Stuff an Egg

It’s Easter weekend; a time for pretty new dresses and white shoes, a suit and tie for the boy, a visit from Dad & Mom the Easter Bunny, and boiled eggs.

{I am only looking at the lighter side of Easter weekend today}


While my kiddos have outgrown the Easter bunny & Egg hunts (*tears*), they still love to decorate eggs Easter weekend which means an over abundance of boiled eggs on Sunday.  Besides throwing them at a tree and busting them like my Bradley enjoys doing, what is there to do with all of these eggs?

Well, you can peel and eat them immediately, slice them to put on a green salad, add a few to homemade chicken salad, or make egg salad, but I love to stuff or devil my eggs!  There is so much variety when you go to stuff an egg.  Who would have ever imagined that vintage goodness would ever stay so popular and  have so much variety?!

 

Last week on Facebook I asked for recipes and even pictures from friends who might like to share their favorite stuffed egg recipe for the Easter holidays and received several delicious ideas that I wanted to share as Easter weekend has arrived.  From traditional to unique and one truly bizarre (courtesy of my brother-in-law) I hope you find something that appeals to you and your family this weekend.

**from Debbie Hansen:

6 hard boiled eggs, sliced in half lengthwise
3 T mayo
½ tsp dry mustard
¼ tsp salt
¼ tsp pepper

Mash yolks and combine with other ingredients. Fill whites with egg yolk mixture heaping it slightly. Cover and refrigerate up to 24 hours.

Debbie’s notes: Depending on the size of the yolks, you may have to adjust the amount of mayo added. I tend to like my deviled eggs creamy. I also pipe the mixture into the whites using a pastry bag and a star tip and sprinkle lightly with paprika.



**from my daughter, Madeline & my Mom:


boil 6 eggs
mix egg yokes with:
tbs pickle relish
2 tbs miracle whip
garlic and salt to taste
1 tsp mustard
mix thoroughly and fill eggs halves then sprinkle with paprika

**I don’t have a picture for these, but my dear friend, Jane Dawkins,  suggested that you mix a small can of deviled ham with the egg yolks, mayo and pickle relish. It makes pink, tasty deviled eggs!


**from Erika Rich:

Maytag Deviled Eggs served at The Lodge at Copperhead in the North Georgia Mountains. Eggs topped with Blue Cheese and Bacon”  There is also pickle juice and dill in the filling. 
My friend, Andrea loved these Caesar Stuffed Eggs from Rachel Ray:


  • 12 large hard-boiled eggs, peeled
  • 1 small clove garlic
  • 2 teaspoons anchovy paste
  • A handful grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
  • 3 to 4 tablespoons mayonnaise, just enough to bind
  • 1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
  • Juice of 1/2 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon coarse black pepper
  • 2 romaine lettuce leaves, from the heart, finely chopped

 

 

Cut the fat rounded ends off the eggs and scoop the yolks into a bowl. Stand the hard-boiled egg whites upright in the egg carton. If you prefer to serve the eggs on a platter, trim a small piece of egg off the pointed ends so they will stand upright.

 

 

Break the egg yolks up a little bit using a fork. Grate the garlic directly over the bowl, then add the anchovy paste, Parmigiano, mayo, Worcestershire, lemon juice, pepper and half the finely chopped lettuce. Mash until smooth and check the seasonings.

 

 

Fill the egg whites, overstuffing them a little. Garnish with the remaining finely chopped lettuce.
(Food Network.com)

 

 

From my own kitchen; Dijon Deviled Eggs

7-8 hard boiled egg yolks, reserving whites in halves for filling
2 tablespoons reduced-fat sour cream
1 tablespoon + 1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard (if you like a stronger flavor)
1 heaping tablespoon chopped dill pickles (more for the kiddos who like pickles)
1 heading teaspoon minced sweet onion
kosher salt to taste

Mix all  ingredients well with a hand mixer so that they are smooth.  Using a pastry bag pipe filling into 12 halves.  Save the remaining whites for the picky ones who don’t eat stuffed eggs.
Garnish eggs with chopped chives, crumbled bacon, or shredded pancetta.


I will leave you with my brother-in-law’s recipe for stuffed eggs …..,

Who needs a recipe, just use Cayenne Pepper instead of Paprika and throw some stuff in there. And, yes, you can quote me on that!”

{Please let me know if you try that one!}

Linking up for Foodie Friday this week.  If you hop over I am sure there are plenty of dishes to inspire your Easter menu this weekend!

For Those Busy Days

Menu planning is killing me right now.  We have been so busy, I can’t even seem to find the time for a trip to the grocery store!  Our schedule can be so overwhelming this time of year with Audley traveling for work, the ending of basketball season and the beginning of soccer, so I try to plan our menus for the week accordingly.  Unfortunately I am failing in this effort.  
We are not big sandwich eaters, so my easy suppers often consist of using a crock-pot or throwing together a quick breakfast.
 
Don’t you just love breakfast for supper?
  
 
Lately, I constantly find myself pouring over the latest edition of Food & Wine or a cookbook while waiting on school to get out or practice to end just to find a way to get out of my cooking rut.  While shopping at Williams & Sonoma several months back, Audley picked up a cookbook by Tom Colicchio, head judge on Bravo TV’s Top Chef; Wichcraft.  Using this as inspiration to transform the boring sandwich and quick meal, we have more than enjoyed a couple of great late night suppers.
With our hens laying again, it’s also been a new way to utilize the abundance of fresh eggs we collect each day.
Taken from Wichcraft and adapted to our taste, here is what you need for a family of five to enjoy a fabulous supper in about 20 minutes.
5 Ciabatta Rolls, sliced
1 pound bacon
Gorgonzola cheese crumbles
1 1/2 cup frisee lettuce
1 shallot, thinly sliced
eggs
1 1/2 tsp. red wine vinegar
1 1/2 tsp. olive oil
sea salt & fresh ground black pepper
While you are cooking your bacon, take the Gorgonzola cheese and sprinkle it on the bottom half of the Ciabatta rolls.  Toast in the oven at 350 until melted.
In another bowl, take your frisee lettuce, sliced shallot and add to it the red wine vinegar and olive oil. Salt and pepper to your desired taste.
Remove your bacon from heat and drain on a paper towel.  Cook your eggs over-easy, or a little more if your don’t like a lot of yolk.
When the eggs are done to your satisfaction, assemble your sandwich.  Layer your egg, bacon, and lettuce on top of the melted cheese on the Ciabatta roll.

 

Serve it up with some kettle cooked chips for a simple, but filling meal.
 
How do you get out of a cooking rut?  What is your favorite quick recipe for those busy nights?