Showing posts with label breakfasts. Show all posts
Showing posts with label breakfasts. Show all posts

Tuesday, October 31, 2017

Allergy-Free Pancakes

Time for breakfast!
  • 1 1/4 C gluten-free baking flour
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp corn-free baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 3/4 C dairy-free milk
  • 1/2 C water
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp sunflower oil
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1.  In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, brown sugar, baking powder, and salt.  Add milk, water, oil, and vanilla.  Stir until just combined, being careful not to overmix.
2.  Heat a medium skillet over medium-low heat.  Coat with cooking spray or oil.  Add 1/4 C of batter to pan.  Flip pancake when bubbles appear in center and underside is golden brown, repeat on other side.  Continue with remaining batter, serving warm.

Robyn's notes: because of the homemade baking powder, these will not rise as high as standard pancakes, so you're unlikely to get that thick white edge we're all used to seeing.  If corn is not a problem for you, feel free to use store-bought baking powder, and your edges will be less lacy.  These pancakes are best when made small.  Instead of having a short stack of wide pancakes, have a higher stack of petite ones!  Watch me demonstrate this recipe on youtube!

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Monday, October 30, 2017

Instant Pot Hard-Cooked Eggs

I'm not breaking any new ground with this one, but having it here will help me remember the adjustments I made for yield and elevation.
  • 1/2 C water
  • 6 large eggs
1.  Pour water into the inner pot of Instant Pot.  Insert steam rack, handles up, into the pot.  Carefully set eggs, in a single layer, on the rack, and place the inner pot into the cooker.
2.  Close and lock lid of Instant Pot.  Turn the steam release handle to "sealing" position.  Press "Manual" and cook at High Pressure 9 minutes.
3.  While eggs cook, fill a large bowl with cold water.  When time is up, immediately open the cooker using Quick Pressure Release.  Transfer eggs to cold water to stop the cooking process.  Cool completely and store in refrigerator.

Robyn's notes: this is the only way I make hard-cooked eggs anymore, and I've been making tons of them since I started doing it this way.  It's quick, I don't have to stand watching for the water to boil, and they cook exactly the way I want them to.  I've also found that they've been peeling more easily than hard-boiled eggs, but that could be more a function of the eggs themselves than the cooking process.  I fill the bowl with water and place it in the fridge while the eggs are cooking, so I don't have to bother with ice, taking it out just before the time is up.  Remember that 9 minutes is the cooktime for my altitude, sea level will be lower (though not by much).  Experiment to find your perfect time.

For my IP Mini, it's 3/4 C water and 7 minutes.

***** 5 Stars: Excellent. A favourite for both of us, I will make this repeatedly

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Fast Fruit Pie

If you've kept a batch of our make-ahead pie/tart dough in the freezer, you can use it to throw together this quick pie, using frozen fruit! 
  • 1 C frozen sliced peaches, unsweetened
  • 1/4 C frozen raspberries, unsweetened
  • 1/4 C sugar
  • 1 Tbsp + 1 tsp tapioca starch (tapioca flour)
  • 1 batch pie dough
1.  Preheat oven to 400°F.  In a medium bowl, combine raspberries, peaches, sugar, and tapioca starch.  Fruit does not need to be thawed ahead of time.  Set aside. 
2.  On a lightly-floured surface, roll one portion of dough to fit inside of 7-inch pie pan.  Gently place into pan, pressing into place carefully.  Roll second portion of dough to the same thickness as the first.  Use small cookie cutters to cut out sections of dough, set aside. 
3.  Transfer fruit mixture to dough-lined pie pan.  Top with cut-out dough pieces.  Bake at 400°F for 20-25 minutes, or until dough is golden and fruit is cooked through inside.  Allow to cool on a rack for several minutes before serving. 
You can change up the fruit used in this pie to your preference, as long as it totals about 1-1 1/4 C.

Robyn's notes: by fluting the edges of the crust or using a lattice top instead of cut-outs, you can make this pie very pretty.  My intent here was to show a fast, delicious pie, not one for presentation, but feel free to go wild with the look.  Watch me demonstrate this recipe (and the dough!) on youtube!

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Friday, May 5, 2017

Mini Hash Brown Pies

These can be made as one pie in a single, larger skillet, but I do enjoy individual servings and don't get a lot of opportunities to use my mini skillets. 
  • 4 strips bacon, diced
  • 1/2 C frozen shredded hash browns, thawed and drained
  • 3 eggs
  • dash pepper
  • 1/2 C shredded cheddar cheese (or blend)
  • 1/2 Tbsp vegetable oil
1.  Divide bacon between two mini cast iron skillets, cook over medium-high heat about 2 minutes.  Add half of potatoes to each skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, 3-4 minutes.
2.  In a medium bowl, beat eggs together with pepper until fluffy.  Stir in cheese.  Pour half into another bowl.
3.  Add bacon-potato mixture from each skillet into each bowl of egg.  Stir well.
4.  Pour oil into now-empty skillets.  Add mixtures to skillets and cook over medium-high heat until bottom is golden brown and top is lightly set.
5.  Loosen edges with heat-resistant spatula and slide each pie onto a plate.  Place another plate upside down on top of pie, and flip, holding the plates together.  Slide the now-inverted pie back into the skillet, tucking in the edges.
6.  Cook for a few more minutes, until egg is completely set.

Robyn's notes: to thaw the potatoes quickly, microwave them for a couple minutes, stirring halfway through.  Squeeze thawed potatoes in a paper towel to get all moisture out.  Watch me demonstrate this recipe on youtube!

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Cheesy Eggs in a CrockPot Lunch Warmer

I won a CrockPot Lunch Warmer in a raffle and have been trying it out.  Works great for its intended purpose, which is to warm up leftovers or canned food over a few hours, to avoid sad desk lunches in places where a microwave isn't available or isn't convenient.  While it is not to be used to cook food, uncooked meat should never be heated in a lunch warmer, I was able to make this successful from-scratch dish for one.
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp milk
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/4 C shredded cheese
1.  In a small bowl, whisk together eggs and milk until well combined.  Add remaining ingredients and stir.
2.  Pour into lunch warmer insert.  Plug in and cook for 90 minutes, stirring after 45 minutes.

Robyn's notes: obviously not the most efficient way to scramble eggs, but it certainly does work well when the lunch warmer is the only heating method available.  Watch me demonstrate this recipe and discuss the warmer generally on youtube!

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Iranian Cinnamon-Date Omelette

Persian cooks have a lot of fabulous dishes in their repertoire, but if you had to focus on one thing they do particularly well, it's the way they combine sweet with savoury.  If you really want to start your day off right, this omelette for one is the way to go!  This recipe is courtesy Yasmin Khan, and her book The Saffron Tales.
  • 4 pitted Medjool dates, halved
  • a couple pinches of ground cinnamon
  • a good pinch of ground ginger
  • 3 Tbsp water
  • 2 eggs
  • pinch of sea salt
  • 2 tsp milk
  • 1 Tbsp butter
1.  Place dates, cinnamon, ginger, and water in a small pan.  Stir well, cover, and cook on low for 5 minutes, or until dates have softened.
2.  Meanwhile, crack eggs into a small bowl with sea salt and milk.  Beat until fluffy.
3.  Heat a skillet over low heat, add butter.  When butter has melted and is bubbling, add dates and cook for 2 minutes.  Space the dates out evenly in the pan and pour in the beaten eggs, giving the pan a gentle shake to even out the eggs.
4.  Cook until the omelette is almost set, then fold in half and lightly press closed.  Serve with a dusting of additional cinnamon.

Robyn's notes: this was good, though I'm picky about my eggs and like them very cooked through.  The sugar in the dates, of course, starts to crystallize fairly quickly, so the underside of the omelette in the pan got darker than I wanted it before the top was as set as I like.  Still enjoyable and great for those who like the traditional omelette that's still a bit wet in the center.  Watch me demonstrate this recipe on youtube!

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Slow-Cooker Breakfast Bake

I'm someone who enjoys traditional breakfast foods at any time of the day, but if you prefer not to have breakfast for dinner, this makes a great weekend brunch.  Just start it when you first get up, and in a couple hours it'll be ready! 
  • 1 C frozen hash brown potatoes
  • 1 C shredded cheddar cheese
  • 3 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
  • 3 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp milk
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/8 tsp pepper
1.  Spray the inside of a 1 1/2 quart slow cooker with cooking spray.  Pour potatoes, cheese, and bacon into slow cooker, stir briefly to combine.
2.  Beat together eggs, milk, salt, and pepper until well mixed.  Pour over mixture in slow cooker, stir briefly to distribute potatoes, cheese, and bacon throughout eggs.
3.  Cover slow cooker and cook on HIGH for 2-3 hours or on LOW for 4-5 hours, until well set.

Robyn's notes: I used Southern-style hash brown potatoes, because it was what I had on hand, but the shredded will also work just as well.  I also used a four-cheese Mexican cheese blend because again it was what I had on hand.  If desired, add chopped green onions when combining potatoes, cheese, and bacon.  I thought this would be only ok, but I actually enjoyed it quite a bit.  Watch me demonstrate this recipe on youtube!

**** 4 Stars: Very Good. Enjoyed by us both, I will make this frequently

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Vintage Cheese Ramequins

One of my Christmas gifts this past year was a vintage 1909 Cooking for Two cookbook by Janet McKenzie Hill.  Quite a few of the recipes can still be made today with a minimum of tweaking, because Ms Hill attended the Boston Cooking School, where recipes written in the style we know them today really took off.  Unfortunately, Ms Hill did tend to use the same recipe in more than one of her cookbooks, which means that this particular one was not actually a 2-person yield originally.  I've reduced it and updated a couple things (baking temperature and time, for example).  I am, though, using her original spelling for the recipe name. 
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp melted butter (plus additional butter for ramekins)
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/4 C + 2 Tbsp plain bread crumbs
  • 2 oz Cheddar cheese, shredded
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 3/4 C milk
1.  Preheat oven to 350°F.   Butter inside of two ramekins or custard cups and set aside.
2.  Combine melted butter, salt, paprika, bread crumbs, and cheese, mixing thoroughly.  Set aside.
3.  Add milk to egg and stir into cheese mixture.
4.  Pour evenly into buttered ramekins.  Place ramekins in a casserole dish and surround with hot water (bain-marie) to about half the height of the ramekins.  Bake at 350°F for 45-50 minutes or until a toothpick inserted near the center comes out clean.  Serve hot before they deflate. 

Robyn's notes: The baking cheese smelled fantastic, but I admit I don't eat a lot of souffles because I don't care for the texture of the moist curds inside.  This is basically a much easier cheese souffle, so while it was good, it wasn't a big treat for me.  If desired, after buttering the ramekins, sprinkle them with freshly grated Parmesan cheese on the bottom and sides.  This will form a crust around the finished dish.  Watch me demonstrate this dish on youtube!

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Friday, November 20, 2015

Chipotle-Mornay Muffin Melts

I seem to be on a bit of a chipotle kick recently.  Since so much of the can is left over after each recipe, I was brainstorming and came up with a bunch of ideas that I thought would be good to try.  Then I got pretty busy elsewhere in life and had a few days in a row where I needed quick, easy dinners.  So instead of spacing those recipes out as I usually would, I had chipotle-based dishes a couple nights straight.
  • 2 English muffins, split
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, sliced into coins
  • 1/4 tsp salt, divided
  • pinch pepper
  • 1 Tbsp butter
  • 1 Tbsp flour
  • 3/4 C milk
  • 3/4 C shredded Gruyere
  • 1 chipotle pepper in adobo sauce
1.  Toast English muffins, top with a single layer of egg coins, and season with about 1/8 tsp of salt and the pepper.
2.  In a small saucepan, melt butter.  Stir in flour, remaining 1/8 tsp salt, and pepper.  Stir in milk all at once.  Cook and stir over medium heat till thickened and bubbly.  Stir in Gruyere until melted; add chipotle pepper and let adobo sauce incorporate completely.  Pour sauce over egg-topped muffins.

Robyn's notes: a Mornay sauce is Bechemel (white sauce) with Gruyere and egg yolks added.  In this case the egg is not in the sauce, but under it!  I thought this worked out pretty well, I was pretty stingy with the pepper and adobo sauce, so it just added a little kick and some depth of flavour.  My only real complaint is aesthetic, I wish the final dish wasn't so pale!

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Pear Rose Cardamom Oatmeal

This recipe comes from Vegan Slow Cooking for Two or Just for You, which I've had for over a year and had not yet cooked from.
  • 1/2 C steel-cut oats
  • 2 C unsweetened coconut milk
  • 1 small pear, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1/2 tsp rosewater, food grade
  • 1/2 tsp almond extract
  • 1/2 tsp ground cardamom
  • 1/4 tsp cinnamon
  • sweetener to taste (sugar, stevia, etc)
1.  Spray 1 1/2 qt crockpot with cooking spray.  Add all ingredients except sweetener.  Cook on low overnight (7-9 hours).
2.  Stir oatmeal well and add sweetener.

Robyn's notes: this tasted good, but I found the texture extremely unpleasant.  It was just a mush, and fairly slimy.  I sweetened with brown sugar and found myself adding quite a lot of it just to break up the unpleasant feel in my mouth.  

** 2 Stars: Acceptable. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, if I make changes

Thursday, November 12, 2015

Open-Face Breakfast Sandwiches

This is another quick dish I had regularly growing up. I don't buy bread products at the store very often, because they tend to start growing before I finish the package. So this is a good way to use up English muffins without feeling like I'm eating the same thing day after day.

  • 2 English muffins, split
  • 2 hard-boiled eggs, sliced into coins
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 3-4 oz Cheddar cheese, sliced
  • 2 slices cooked bacon, crumbled or diced
1.  Toast English muffins.
2.  Top each English muffin half with single layer of egg coins, season with salt and pepper.  Top with slices of cheese and sprinkle bacon on center of cheese.
3.  Microwave on high 20-45 seconds, until edges of cheese are starting to melt, but slices retain their shape.

Robyn's notes: as soon as these come out of the microwave they should be moved to a different section of the plate, or the condensation beneath them will make the English muffins wet and gummy.   Can be made without the bacon, if that's too much trouble or it's not on hand.

**** 4 Stars: Very Good. Enjoyed by us both, I will make this frequently

Monday, October 15, 2012

Drop Biscuits

Growing up, my mom had an old recipe for baking powder biscuits that we all loved.  Soft and fluffy and flaky, perfect with jam or honey or even just butter.  I've made the recipe myself a few times, but don't have the recipe available just now. These drop biscuits aren't a replacement for the old cut-out biscuits I love, but they're an easy substitution, especially for a leisurely morning.
  • 2/3 C flour
  • 3/4 tsp baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp baking soda
  • 1/8 tsp sugar
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1/3 C buttermilk, cold
  • 2 Tbsp butter, melted and slightly cooled, plus 1 tsp extra for brushing the completed tops
1.  Preheat oven to 450°F.  Line baking sheet with parchment paper.
2.  In medium bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, and salt.  In a small bowl, combine chilled buttermilk and melted butter until butter forms small clumps.  Stir buttermilk mixture into flour mixture with a rubber spatula until just combined and dough is pulling away from the sides of the bowl.
3.  Using a greased 1/4 C measure or #16 scoop, drop four mounds of dough onto prepared baking sheet (see notes, below), about 1 1/2 inches apart.  Bake 12-15 minutes until tops are golden brown and crisp, turning pan halfway through baking.
4.  Brush additional melted butter on tops of baked biscuits, transfer to a wire rack, and allow to cool for 5 minutes, serving warm.

Robyn's notes: I used a 1/4 C measure to scoop the dough onto the baking sheet, and got exactly three biscuits.  The original recipe gives a yield of four, so it's up to you whether to scoop the dough into four equal portions or measure out in 1/4 C amounts as instructed.  Be aware that smaller biscuits will cook faster.  These came out slightly dry for my taste, but I strongly suspect that my oven thermostat is wrong and that they were baking at a temperature higher than the oven claimed.  Since I haven't found my oven thermometer in any of the boxes we have here, I can't check it yet.  The biscuits were still good, easy to pull apart and tasty both with jam and just with dabs of butter.  

**** 4 Stars: Very Good. Enjoyed by us both, I will make this frequently

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Cinnamon Apple Bagels

I love bagels for breakfast.  When I lived in Arizona, every Saturday morning when I got home from work (my Friday night shift ended at 7am Saturday morning), we'd load the dog into the car and head for the Bark Park, to give him a chance to run around and socialize with other dogs.  On the way, we'd stop at Einstein Brothers Bagels.  I'd get a plain with plain shmear (restrictions, sigh) and a hot chocolate.  Einstein Brothers knew us, and always threw in a free doggie bagel--bagels that fell on the floor would be wiped off and then cooked near to burnt for dogs.  Usually I'm too tired in the mornings to get fancy with my bagels, and I still have a plain with plain cream cheese.  Sometimes, though, I like to do a little something more.  No measurements on this, because much of it will depend on individual tastes.

1.  Split and toast two bagels, plain or whatever flavour is preferred (cinnamon or raisin are good options).  Allow to cool until easily held.
2.  Shmear cut sides with cream cheese to achieve preferred consistency (I like a lot of cream cheese on my bagel, my sweetheart prefers a thin spread).  Top with thin slices of apple (I usually go with Golden Delicious, you'll want an "eating apple", not a baking apple, that's juicy).  Sprinkle with brown sugar and cinnamon.

Robyn's notes:  that's all there is to it!  The cinnamon won't impart a lot of actual taste, but every time you bring the bagel to your mouth you'll smell the cinnamon, and that makes for an entirely different experience than if you leave it out.  The juicy apple with the thick bagel bread is a winner in my mind.  I'm not allowed to eat the peel, so I have to peel my apples, but since that's where a lot of the nutrition is, I recommend leaving it on if you can.

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Breakfast Burritos

For most of my career, I chose to work the night shift (aka Mids/Graveyard).  I really preferred it to either Days or Swings, for a lot of reasons, but there were a few aspects of working nights that were challenging.  One of those is the food issue.  If I was asleep from approximately 8am until 3 or 4 in the afternoon, then when I woke up I wasn't likely to be in the mood for dinner foods, even though it was the regular dinner time.  My meal during my shift (I usually tried to get the 2:30 or 3am lunch break) was never anything particularly special or filling, because it's hard to get enthused about a meal at that time of night, especially when you only have 30 minutes to reheat and eat.  When I got home from work I was ready for a nice big meal...but generally too tired to fix one after a 10-14 hour shift.  So co-workers and I often went to either a particular pancake restaurant or a small Mexican cafe that opened right before our shift ended.  At the latter, I always ordered a breakfast burrito, and the ones I got there are still the best I've ever had.  A few years ago I mentioned on Twitter that I was going to have a breakfast burrito for dinner, and was horrified at how many people asked me what that was. 
  • 1 Tbsp oil
  • 1 C frozen southern-style hash brown potatoes
  • 2 medium (soft taco size) flour tortillas
  • 2 eggs
  • 1-2 Tbsp milk
  • dash salt
  • pinch pepper
  • 1 tsp butter
  • 2-3 Tbsp diced ham
  • 1/3 C shredded cheese (either 4 Cheese Mexican blend or Cheddar)
1.  Heat oil in medium skillet over medium-high heat.  Carefully add potatoes to form an even layer.  Cover and cook over medium-high heat for 4 minutes.
2.  In a nonstick 8-inch skillet on another burner, warm tortillas one at a time over medium-low heat.  Set aside and cover to keep warm.  Beat together eggs, milk, salt, and pepper in a small bowl. 
3.  Remove lid from potatoes, turn them, and reduce heat to medium.  Cook, uncovered, for 4 minutes without further stirring. 
4.  Melt butter in small skillet used to warm tortillas.  Add egg mixture and cook slowly, scrambling with a silicone spatula.  As soon as the egg starts to set, add ham and continue to cook and stir together until cooked to your preference.
5.  Spoon approximately 1 Tbsp cheese down center of each tortilla.  Top with half of potatoes onto each, then half of the egg mixture.  Cover each with remaining cheese.  Fold over sides of tortillas and secure, if needed, with a toothpick.

Robyn's notes: this is a simple dish, but it can take some trying to get all the timing right, since both skillets are working at the same time and everything has to finish at just the right moments to keep anything from getting overcooked or cold from sitting.  I always have a bag of these potatoes in the freezer.  Likewise, I always have 4 Cheese Mexican blend shredded cheese in the house, it's more my standard than regular cheddar, so that's what I use.  Just before removing the eggs and ham from the skillet, I like to stir a bit of the cheese (maybe a Tbsp) into them so it gets all nice and warm and melty and gooey and integrated, instead of  just being layers.  Some people like to add salsa or onions and peppers or a bit of hot sauce to their breakfast burritos, since I can't eat any of that I don't.  The ham can be replaced with bacon or sausage, or left out entirely for a vegetarian version.  Without ham it might be a good idea to add a third egg, as I don't think it's as hearty a meal.  Although I've got a 'breakfasts' label on this, I'm much more likely to serve it as a dinner these days. 

**** 4 Stars: Very Good. Enjoyed by us both, I will make this frequently

Friday, June 1, 2012

Mini Cocotte Frittatas

When I received those Le Creuset mini cocottes, I said I would be going crazy writing recipes just to use them, and, yes, it has begun.

  • 2 eggs
  • 4 Tbsp Gruyere, divided
  • 1 1/2 Tbsp milk
  • 2 Tbsp diced ham
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
  • 1/2 Tbsp oil
  • 1/2 C frozen southern-style hash brown potatoes
  • 2 C baby spinach
1.  Set cocottes on a rimmed baking sheet and place in oven; preheat oven to 450°F.  While oven is heating, melt oil in a small skillet, add potatoes and cook over medium-high heat, covered, for about 4 minutes, or until brown on one side.  Reduce heat to medium-low, turn potatoes, push to one side of the skillet, and add spinach to the other side.  Cook, uncovered, until spinach is wilted, about 2 minutes.
2.  Whisk together egg, 2 Tbsp cheese, milk, ham, salt, and pepper.  When spinach is cooked, stir it into the egg mixture.
3.  Remove heated dishes from the oven and coat with cooking spray.  Spoon half of the potatoes into the bottom of each cocotte, and immediately pour in egg mixture, topping with remaining cheese.  Bake until frittata is puffed up and golden, about 15 minutes.

Robyn's notes: these came out quite small, which is fine as long as they're served alongside some fresh fruit or whatever is preferred.  I do not recommend increasing the amount of egg.  Every time I've tried to do so, the outside has cooked through, but as soon as it's pierced with a fork the center is discovered to be raw liquid egg.  I end up having to stir the top inch and cook, stir and cook, for another 6-8 minutes, which overcooks the sides and makes the cheese flavour disappear.  For those without cocottes, ramekins or individual casserole dishes should work fine.  I can't eat spinach, so mine is the one on the left in the picture above, I just poured in my part of the egg mixture before stirring in the spinach.  I always keep a bag of these potatoes in the freezer, to use when I'm making breakfast burritos, and the brand and style I use (Ore-Ida) is gluten-free.  An additional option for those who are able to eat such things is to use either the hash brown potatoes with peppers and onions, or to add a little diced shallot/onion and pepper when cooking the potatoes.  These were good.  Moist and tasty, and easy to add things to if desired.  

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Monday, April 30, 2012

Crustless Mini Quiches

  • butter, for greasing pans
  • 2 Tbsp bread crumbs
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/3 C milk
  • pinch of salt
  • dash of pepper
  • 1/3 C diced ham
  • 1/3 C Gruyere, shredded, divided
1.  Preheat oven to 400°F.  Butter the bottom and sides of two mini tart/quiche pans and dust with bread crumbs (1 Tbsp of crumbs into each).  Set aside.
2.  In a medium-sized bowl, beat the eggs together; add the milk, salt, and pepper. Add ham and all but 2 Tbsp cheese.
3.  Pour egg mixture into the prepared pans and scatter remaining cheese over tops.  Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until eggs are set.

Robyn's notes: this is very close to a Quiche Lorraine, but uses ham instead of bacon (mainly because I had ham in the house I wanted to use up).  I'm a big fan of breakfast for dinner, obviously this can be served basically any time of the day.  If you do not have mini tart pans, prepare a regular sized pie pan in the same manner and bake for 25-35 minutes, watching for the eggs to set.  It may be a much thinner quiche that way, I can't say for sure how far the egg mixture will go in a single large pan.  This turned out very well and I'm pleased with it because I always have bread crumbs in the house but rarely have prepared crusts or the energy to make a crust from scratch.  Good way to use up Gruyere if you've made Gnocchi Mac n Cheese recently.

**** 4 Stars: Very Good. Enjoyed by us both, I will make this frequently

Easy Berry Yogurt Muffins

Note: check yield before starting, this is a full-size recipe, makes 12 muffins
  • 1 1/2 C flour 
  • 1 tsp baking powder 
  • 1/2 tsp salt 
  • 1/2 C packed brown sugar 
  • 4 Tbsp melted butter 
  • 1 large egg 
  • 3/4 C plain yogurt 
  • 2 Tbsp milk 
  • 1 tsp vanilla 
  • 1 C blackberries, frozen or fresh
1.  Preheat oven to 400°F.  Line muffin tin with 12 paper cups.
2.  In a large bowl, mix together the flour, baking powder, salt, and brown sugar.  In another bowl, combine the melted butter, egg, yogurt, milk, and vanilla until well mixed.  Pour the wet ingredients into the dry and gently stir.  Add in the blackberries and stir until just combined.
3.  Spoon batter into paper cups and bake for about 20 minutes or until the tops are golden.  Allow to cool for 5-10 minutes, serving while still warm.

Yield: 12 muffins

Robyn's notes: I may eventually cut this recipe down, but sometimes you just have to make it once at full-size in order to determine the best method for halving the single egg.  These muffins definitely need the paper linings for the tin, they wouldn't have come out of a tin that's just been sprayed or greased.  When combining the wet ingredients, I melted the butter in the microwave, let it sit to cool while I combined the rest of the wet ingredients, then slowly drizzled in the butter while stirring.  If you add melted butter to cold egg, the egg will start to cook in the bowl.  For me, the 20 minute cook time was perfect, it definitely could not have come out any sooner and shouldn't go much longer, but some ovens might need one or two minutes more.  I used fresh berries.  The berries, by the way, are somewhat molten when the muffins first come out of the oven, so be careful.  Would make a good brunch muffin.  

**** 4 Stars: Very Good. Enjoyed by us both, I will make this frequently

Sunday, October 9, 2011

All-Purpose Crepes

I don't usually share recipes that have large yields, or recipes for freezing. I'm not someone who enjoys leftovers or thawing Tuesday's frozen food for Friday's dinner. Crepes, however, are different. When I was a small child, around 6 years old, I fell in love with crepes, and I've been filling them both sweet and savory ever since. This recipe has a large yield, and the finished crepes take up very little space in the fridge or freezer.
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 C flour
  • 2 C milk
  • 1/2 C melted butter
1. Combine ingredients in blender, blend for about 1 minute. Scrape down sides with rubber spatula and blend for another 15 seconds or until smooth.
2. Refrigerate batter at least 1 hour.
3. Brush pan with butter and heat over medium-high heat. Pour 2 to 3 Tablespoons of batter into pan (using a ladle makes this easier), and tilt pan in all directions to swirl the batter so that it covers the bottom of the pan in a very thin layer. Cook crepe until bottom is lightly browned, 1-2 minutes. Turn carefully with spatula and brown the other side for a few seconds until set. Remove from pan with spatula; stack between layers of waxed paper.

Yield: 30 to 35 crepes

Robyn's notes: do not feel that your crepes need to be perfectly uniform in size or an exact circle. Basically you are making an exceptionally thin pancake. Whereas when making pancakes, you're watching for bubbles to form, when making crepes you're watching for the surface sheen to disappear. When the surface of the crepe batter appears dull, that's when it's time to turn the crepe over. Once the crepes have been made and stacked on the waxed paper, they can be stored in the fridge or freezer in a ziploc bag. Fridge for about a week, freezer for up to 4 months. This batter can be used for any manner of fillings, both sweet and savory. Be creative, or search "crepes" in the sidebar for my recipes using this base.

**** 4 Stars: Very Good. Enjoyed by us both, I will make this frequently

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Chocolate Chocolate-Chip Muffin Pair

After I made my Chocolate Cupcake Duo, an adaptation of this recipe by How Sweet It Is, I realized that the cupcakes were very similar to the chocolate chocolate chip muffins that we used to get when we had a Costco membership. This recipe is almost exactly the same as my earlier one, just a couple minor changes.
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 2 Tbsp butter, melted
  • 1/2 tsp vanilla
  • 2 Tbsp flour
  • 2 Tbsp cocoa
  • 1/4 heaping tsp baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 Tbsp milk
  • 2 Tbsp chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line a muffin pan with 2 liners.
2. In medium bowl, add egg white and sugar and beat until combined. Add vanilla and melted butter and stir until mixed. Add flour, cocoa, baking powder and salt and stir until smooth. Stir in milk, then chocolate chips. Divide batter equally between the 2 cupcake liners.
3. Bake at 350 for 16-18, or until cake is set. Let cool completely.

Robyn's notes: I didn't even check the muffins until they'd baked for 18 minutes.

*** 3 Stars: Good. At least one of us liked this enough for me to make it again, but not often

Monday, July 4, 2011

Hard-Boiled Eggs

also known as Hard-Cooked Eggs
  • 6 large eggs
  • Cold water
1. Place eggs in a single layer in a large saucepan (do not stack eggs). Add enough cold water to cover the eggs by 1 inch. Bring to a rapid boil over high heat (water will have large rapidly breaking bubbles). Remove from heat, cover, and let stand for 15 minutes; drain.
2. Run cold water over the eggs or place them in ice water until cool enough to handle; drain.
3. To peel eggs, gently tap each egg on the countertop. Roll the egg between the palms of your hands. Peel off eggshell, starting at the large end.

Yield: 6 hard-boiled eggs

If you have extra-large eggs, let eggs stand in the boiled water for 18 minutes.

Robyn's notes: this is the method I use to hard-boil eggs. It seems basically every household has their own preferred method. My family's one addition to this is to poke a small hole in the base (rounded end) of each egg with a pin. It helps keep the eggs from cracking during cooking.

**** 4 Stars: Very Good. Enjoyed by us both, I will make this frequently

Nutrition Facts: Calories 78; Total Fat 5g; Saturated Fat 2g; Monounsaturated Fat 2g; Polyunsaturated Fat 1g; Cholesterol 212mg; Sodium 62mg; Carbohydrate 1g; Total Sugar 0g; Fiber 0g; Protein 6g; Vitamin A 0%DV; Vitamin C 0%DV; Calcium 3%DV; Iron 3%DV; Medium-fat Meat 1(d.e.)