Important breakfast news

July 16, 2012

Fake_huevos_rancheros

I just made a delicious breakfast for supper and that’s exciting! Not because I’m so clever for mixing up meals—I’m not, I know plenty of people who eat non-traditionally—but because it solves two “problems” I’ve been having.

I firmly believe that breakfast is, as is commonly touted, the most important meal of the day. I must eat it, particularly on workdays. On those rare mornings when I don’t eat something, I am pretty distracted until I can reasonably get an early lunch.

I don’t ask much of my breakfast. It involves an egg or two and some other stuff. And there’s the first thing I must deal with. No matter how delicious something is or how go-to a particular combination of ingredients is, every now and then you need something different. Variety is the spice of life.

I have a few go-to breakfasts that I employ. I used to always make the South Beach Cheesy Frittata, though these days, it’s more of a weekend treat because it takes a little more effort to prepare. Another standard is what I fondly call Egg McBread—a lightly scrambled egg, folded, put between the halves of a piece of toast with some sliced cheese. These days, it’s two lightly scrambled eggs topped with chèvre. I’m getting bored with that. I get a bagel and cream cheese more mornings than I should (because I try to limit my carbs).

I do have some favorite breakfasts out that I enjoy from time to time, especially when my beer intake the night before requests some carbohydrates the morning after (I am not consistent in my shunning of carbs). I love my everything bagel and cream cheese, and there’s a skyway deli that makes an economical and delicious scrambled eggs, bacon, and toast special. Bacon.

A particular favorite breakfast out that I used to enjoy was huevos rancheros—authentic huevos rancheros from the Mexican restaurant that used to be on the ground floor of my office building. And therein lies the second thing that thwarts my breakfast efforts. The restaurant went out of business half a year ago.

I really miss those huevos rancheros.

But what I did tonight for supper will, I believe, humor me on both counts for a while, because I made—wait for it—fake huevos rancheros. Fake for three reasons: there were no tortillas, there was no rice, and I used way too much of the wrong kind of cheese. Oh, and the egg was lightly scrambled, not over-easy. Four reasons. But it incorporated my favorite things about huevos rancheros and man, was it tasty!

I made one lightly scrambled egg in its usual small sauté pan, then spread 1/4 cup refried beans over the top and sprinkled it with 1 ounce shredded pepper jack cheese (Monterrey Jack with jalapeños and other hot peppers, fyi). I wrapped the pan handle in foil and put it under the broiler long enough to toast the cheese a little. I have found my new favorite breakfast, for a while anyway.

¡Muy delicioso!

Maybe I mentioned this already in my Meatless March introductory entry. Because I have decided to deprive myself, ALLLLLLLIWANTISMEATMEATMEATMEATMEAT. But for once in my life, I am actually engaging in some willpower. I know it doesn’t happen often, so don’t fall off your chair.

Here is the accounting of the first full week. I was hoping to have had time to prepare food at home more but I have eaten out a lot, and kind of made the same thing or a variation thereof when I did manage to make it myself. Oh well. I make the things I make because I like them. I’m really diggin’ the quinoa at present.

Img_015373Img_015396Img_015404

Saturday
Folded over egg thing w/quinoa et al
Baja Sol veggie tacos
Pizza Lucé tri-pepper pizza

Img_015415Img_015435

Sunday
Folded over egg thing w/quinoa et al, grapefruit
English muffin, orange
ww tortilla tofu quinoa pizza thing

Img_015438Img_015441Img_015453

Monday
eggs-chevre-sunflower shoots, orange
Real Meal Deal veggie sub, chips
refried bean pizza

Img_015455Img_015477

Tuesday
eggs-chevre-sunflower shoots, orange
Acadia black bean burger*, orange
quinoa pizza

Img_015482Img_015486Img_015488Img_015494Img_015496Img_015501

Wednesday
eggs-chevre-sunflower shoots, tomatoes, orange
Acadia veggie melt
quinoa+chevre
Republic black bean burger w/mushroom, Swiss
Sawatdee tofu pad tai, cream cheese wontons
(oof)

Img_015508Img_015511Img_015513

Thursday
Sawatdee tofu pad tai (leftover)
salad w/tofu and orange
ww tortilla+pepperjack
Groveland Tap veggie burger

Img_015515Img_015517Img_015533

Friday
Bruegger’s Everything bagel+cream cheese, orange
D’Amico fresh mozzarella salad, caprese panini (more toasted than the one last week), chips
Longfellow Grill garden burger w/salad

*Due to this whole Meatless March thing, I have been trying everybody’s veggie burger. Acadia Café, you hands-down have the best with your amazing Black Bean Burger. None of the others come close! Republic, you have good flavor but it doesn’t hold together. Longfellow Grill, yours was pretty tasty, too, but it all squished out of the bun by the time I was half-finished.

One of my joys in life is to spend the day cooking. This usually happens on Sundays as I prepare lunches and suppers for the week ahead. I confess that in the last year or two I’ve gotten a little lazy about cooking, generally because I discovered I like trying restaurants and particularly because food trucks hit the Minneapolis scene. But every time I end up cooking I remember how much I love it.

This weekend I was in overdrive. Odell Brewing had posted a recipe earlier in the week that I wanted to try for dinner. I also found an egg recipe to make for breakfasts; I’ve burned myself out on plain eggs recently so I need to dress them up currently in order to be able to consume them. Finally, I decided I wanted to make soup for lunches this short Thanksgiving week. No recipe for that.

I am copying and pasting the quinoa and egg recipes from the original sources, but editing them to reflect how I made them. I am linking to the original sources after the titles. The soup recipe I made up. 

They’re all delicious!

————————–

Img_3895

Brussels Sprouts & Quinoa Salad (original source here)

1 pound Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil
1 tablespoon honey
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup quinoa
2 cups water

1. Preheat oven to 450 degrees.

2. Toss Brussels sprouts in olive oil, salt and pepper, and spread onto a baking sheet and bake for 20–25 minutes. Remove and let cool.

3. In a large non-stick skillet, toast the quinoa over medium heat for 10 to 15 minutes; add two cups of water, bring to a boil, cover and cook for 15 minutes.

4. While sprouts cook, whisk 1-1/2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of soy sauce, 1/2 tablespoon of honey, a pinch of salt and pepper and garlic until thoroughly combined.

5. In a separate bowl, whisk together 1-1/2 tablespoons of olive oil, 1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar, 1/2 tablespoon honey, and a pinch of salt and pepper until thoroughly combined.

6. Toss the sprouts in soy garlic dressing and the quinoa in balsamic dressing and serve.

7. Optional: Serve Odell Brewing Mountain Standard Double Black IPA with this dish.

————————–

Img_3924

Mini Mushroom-&-Sausage Quiches (original source here)

8 ounces turkey breakfast sausage, removed from casing and crumbled into small pieces
1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
8 ounces mushrooms, sliced
1/4 cup sliced scallions
3 ounces shredded Swiss cheese
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
12 eggs
1/2 cup 1% milk

1. Preheat to 350°F. Coat a nonstick muffin tin generously with cooking spray.

2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add sausage and cook until golden brown minutes. Transfer to a bowl to cool. Add oil to the pan. Add mushrooms and cook, stirring often, until golden brown and water is evaporated. Transfer mushrooms to the bowl with the sausage. Let cool for 5 minutes. Stir in scallions, cheese and pepper.

3. Divide the sausage mixture evenly in the muffin cups.

4. Whisk eggs and milk together in a medium bowl. Divide the egg mixture evenly among the prepared muffin cups.

5. Bake until the tops are just beginning to brown, 40 minutes for a 6-cup large muffin tin. (Regular 12-cup tins may need less time.) Let cool on a wire rack for 5 minutes. Remove from pan and let cool completely.

————————–

 

Img_3930

Tex-Mex Soup (I made this one up all by myself!)

1/2 cup chopped yellow bell pepper
1/2 cup chopped onion
1 cup sliced tomatillo
14.5 ounce can diced tomatoes with green chilies
2 cups chicken broth
1/2 cup sweet corn kernels
1 cup cooked, shredded chicken
1-1/2 cups cooked black beans

1. Coat a dutch oven with cooking spray. Heat over medium heat. Sauté the peppers and onions until soft. Add the tomatillos. Cook for 2 minutes more.

2. Add the diced tomatoes and chicken broth. Bring to a boil.

3. Add the corn, chicken, and black beans. Reduce heat, cover, and simmer for 30 minutes.