Scrambled Eggs – All Dressed Up

I’m not a huge egg fan by any stretch of the imagination, as my family will attest, but today seemed like a good day to make them for a brunch. Our church service was at 0900 instead of later in the morning this week, so we went before breakfast and ate afterwards.

If I’m going to eat eggs, they need to be amped up a bit so I don’t taste the egg too much. I add lots of veggies and cheese and then serve with toast and some fruit. (Today the fruit was clementines).

Scrambled Eggs – All Dressed Up

Ingredients

  • 7 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 4 cloves of garlic, finely minced

    eggs

    Scrambled Eggs All Dressed Up

  • 1/2 red pepper, finely chopped
  • 4-6 oz. mushrooms, thinly sliced (I like to use baby Portobella mushrooms, but pic what you like)
  • 4 oz. sharp cheddar cheese (Usually use the white)
  • 1 tsp. tarragon, dried
  • 1/4 tsp. truffle oil
  • Olive oil and/or butter

Put It All Together

  1. Prepare the garlic, pepper, mushrooms, and cheese. Set aside for the moment.
  2. Crack the  eggs into a medium bowl and add a 1/4 cup water. Mix thoroughly. An immersion blender works wonderful!
  3. Heat a non-stick pan over medium heat until a drop of water spatters. Add 1-2 Tbsp of olive oil and/or butter and heat again. Add garlic, pepper, mushrooms and tarragon. Sauté until soft – about 3-5 minutes.
  4. Add the eggs to the pan and then top with the cheese. Let eggs cook for a half minute. Then with a rubber or wooden spatula, gently push the eggs from the side to the center of the pan. Continue until there is no liquid left. (I find the eggs get fluffier when I add the cheese at the start of cooking).
  5. Sprinkle the truffle oil over the top of the eggs. This is optional, but it does give a delicious umami/earthy flavor to the eggs that I absolutely adore.
  6. Serve with toasted whole wheat bread and fruit.

Mango Smoothie

Haven’t written anything for awhile. Have lots of recipes and no time :-(. Anyway, thought Id get caught up a bit by posting a basic smoothie recipe we like. I could have smoothies every day for breakfast! Here’s one I really like… and it’s definitely adjustable with a variety of fruits.

Mango Smoothie

Ingredients

  • 1 small banana
  • 1 tsp. chia seeds
  • 1 scoop vanilla flavored whey/protein powder (I use Mercola’s Miracle Whey)

    Image

    Mango Smoothie

  • 1-2 Tbsp grated lemon or to taste. (NOTE: I put a lemon in the freezer and then grate it into the smoothie with a microplane  grater)
  • 1/2 cup plain Greek Yogurt
  • 1/2 cup water or 1% milk
  • 1 cup frozen manago chunks (more or less)
  • Fresh grated nutmeg.

Put it Together

  1. Put all ingredients together in a small bowl.
  2. Grate about 1/8 tsp nutmeg over mixture.
  3. Using an immersion blender, mix the ingredients until smooth.
  4. Pour in a large cup or glass – or if you wish, put in two smaller cups for 2 servings.
  5. Grate some more nutmeg over the cup.
  6. NOTE: I leave the lemon and mango out 5-10 minutes before proceeding with grating/mixing. The lemon grates better if left out a few minutes and the mango blends better if slightly thawed.

Variations: There are lots of variations on this. I will often use frozen blueberries or mixed berries as the fruit and then use cinnamon for the spice — using about 1/2 tsp. cinnamon in place of the nutmeg. A friend uses frozen peaches and raspberries. If no yogurt, you can use milk in it’s place if desired. I’ve left the whey powder out and added more yogurt and that works just fine too. Don’t believe there are any hard and fast rules for smoothies. Use your imagination and enjoy!

Blueberry-Cheesecake French Toast Casserole

OK, it’s Labor Day weekend… having a nice time with some family and pretty much a laid back weekend. Nice way to end the summer. Kids are heading home this afternoon, so decided to try a new recipe for a hearty breakfast. I subscribe to “Clean Eating” magazine and often find some “winners” for recipes. Today I hit the mark big time. Julia O’Hara had a recipe for Blueberry Cheesecake Stuffed French Toast. As I read through it, I made a few minor modifications and put it on the table to rave reviews.

Blueberry-Cheesecake French Toast for a weekend breakfast

Blueberry French Toast

Ingredients:

  • 10-12 slices of whole-grain bread.
  • 1 cup part-skim Ricotta cheese
  • 1/2 cup low fat cream cheese (use the real-deal if you wish :-)
  • 5 eggs, divided
  • 4 Tbsp organic raw cane sugar (regular sugar should work – the original calls for evaporated cane juice so I used what I had)
  • 2 cups (1 pint) fresh blueberries
  • 1 cup 2% milk
  • 2 tsp. vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp. ground cinnamon (I’m generous with this)
  • 1/4 tsp. sea salt
  • 1/4 cup sliced unsalted almonds

    For the Blueberry Sauce:

  • 2 cups fresh blueberries (more doesn’t hurt)
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 2 Tbsp. organic raw cane sugar
  • Recipe didn’t call for it, but some lemon zest might be interesting
Directions:
  • Preheat oven to 350 & lightly grease a 13 x 9 inch pan. Place half the bread in the pan, covering the bottom and cutting crusts as necessary to fit.
  • Combine cream cheese, Ricotta cheese, 1 Tbsp. sugar, and 1 egg in food processor. Blend until smooth.
  • Pour the mixture over the bread and then layer a pint off blueberries on top of this. Cover with remaining bread slices, cutting crusts as needed to fit.
  • In a medium bowl, whisk together 4 eggs, the milk, 1 Tbsp. sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, & salt. Pour this over the top of the bread.
  • Mix the almonds and 1 Tbsp. sugar and then sprinkle over the bread evenly.
  • Cover pan with aluminum foil and bake for 25 minutes. Remove the foil and bake 10 more minutes. Then turn your broiler on and broil for 2-5 minutes (watch carefully) to get a nice lightly browned crust. Remove from oven and cool a few minutes before serving.
  • While toast is baking, combine the remaining pint of blueberries, 1/2 cup water, and 2 Tbsp. sugar in a small pan. Bring to boil, and then simmer 5-10 minutes until the berries burst and sauce begins to thicken. Add lemon zest if desired.
To serve, divide casserole as you would a cake and place 2-3 Tbsp. blueberry sauce over the top. The way my crew dumped on the blueberry sauce, I’m thinking another cup of blueberries wouldn’t be the worst thing in the sauce – add another 1/4 cup water and adjust as needed. Hope you enjoy this as much as we did and thanks to Ms. O’Hara!

Steel-Cut Oatmeal

I’m a breakfast person. Having some food in the morning makes me think better and generally feel better the rest of the day. Have a few things I rotate through for breakfast depending on my mood. One thing I’ve been into this past winter is steel cut oatmeal. It’s

Uncooked Steel-Cut Oats

different than the rolled oats you get in the store. It is the whole grain groat (inner portion of kernel) that has been cut into 2-3 pieces with steel rather than rolled. It looks a bit like rice, except a golden brown.

There are a lot of minor variations on how to cook steel-cut oats. Here’s what I currently use.

Steel-Cut Oats (serves 4)

Ingredients

  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups 1% milk (I generally use organic milk)
  • 1 cup steel-cut oats
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 tsp. vanilla
  • Honey & cinnamon to taste

Directions

  1. Combine water, milk, & salt in small cooking pot
  2. Heat until just boiling on medium heat. (NOTE: Watch carefully!! With milk, it will come to a boil quickly).
  3. Add oats and vanilla. Cook on medium-low, until done. Stir frequently (like every minute or two – you don’t want this sticking to the bottom of the pot!)
  4. It takes 20-25 minutes to cook. It has a pearly texture when finished cooking.
  5. Pour into 4 cereal bowls. Top with honey and cinnamon.
  6. You may wish to serve with fruit and/or maple syrup. My husband puts chocolate syrup on his and thinks it tastes like chocolate chip oatmeal cookies. Thin with additional milk or water if needed.

You can make this with only water, but the milk gives it a nice creamy flavor. You can find steel-cut oats in most grocery stores. It’s a bit spendy, but my son has found it for a fraction of the price at a local food coop.

Breakfast Smoothie

Well, was going to work today and as I was walking out the door, got a phone call from client cancelling the visit until later. No complaints from me… emailed my boss and said I was cancelling work today and  taking a vacation day :-). So thought I’d do a post this morning.

I’m a big fan of eating a good breakfast no matter what time you have to get up. I have several items I like to rotate through for breakfast — one of my favorites is to make a smoothie. I’ve made a variety of smoothies, depending on what’s in the house and what I feel like having. I now have a smoothie I really like for now based on a couple recipes on the Internet and ideas from friends and family. Here is my current favorite smoothie to enjoy :-)

Breakfast Smoothie

1 Tbsp wheat germ
2 Tbsp flaxseed meal (I buy whole flax and grind it in an old coffee grinder I no longer use)
1 Tbsp Chia seeds
2 Tbsp whey powder
1.5 Tbsp psyllium powder (great source of fiber & gels the smoothie a bit)
1/2 cup frozen fruit (I’m into 1/2 blueberries & 1/2 raspberries at the moment)
1 small banana (if not available, just add another 1/2 cup frozen fruit)
1/2 cup water
1/2 juice (have used orange, grape, grapefruit, pomegranate, & cherry so far)
1/4-1/2 tsp cinnamon (this is really a matter of taste and optional… i just like cinnamon in lots of stuff)

Mix all ingredients in a blender and pulse until smooth. I actually use my trusty immersion blender and mix it in a 3 cup container. I LOVE my immersion blender (almost as much as I love my 500 GB small external hard drive — which is another post some day).

This smoothie keeps me filled up until past noon easily. Have put a small container of vanilla/plain Greek Yogurt in for the 1/2 cup water which is also good. So what’s your favorite smoothie?