Tag Archives: breakfast

Monthly Review: February 2013

This past month has flown by for us, check out what photos I have captured on my iPhone!

Interested in what we’ve done in past months?
2012: May June July August November December
2013: January

February 2013: Birthday Cards

The month of February started off with my birthday on Groundhog’s Day!  Sam made me a delicious Birthday Fruit Tart (just like last year!).  Do you have friend’s birthdays coming up?  Check out the Cherry-Chocolate Birthday Cake or this delicious steak meal!

February 2013: running race

With other Back on My Feet members I ran the Love the Run You’re with 5K, sponsored by Pacers!  Although it was a little cold, we had sunny weather that was perfect for a morning run.  In March, I’m running the Rock ‘n Roll Half Marathon in DC.  This Sausage, Egg & Cheese Breakfast Casserole is a perfect post-run breakfast!  What races did you run, or are planning on running?

February 2013: Mia

Our friends Stephanie and Jack were out of town, so we got a chance to spend time with their dog Mia!  Isn’t she adorable?  Do any readers out there have dogs?

February 2013: Matchbox

For my birthday lunch, my friend Jess took me to the new Matchbox on 14th.  The restaurant has an open feel, and very well lit- it was great to try some new things on their menu.  I know the sliders and pizzas are the most popular, but do any of you have any favorites?  I’d love to hear suggestions.

February 2013: Valentine's Day

Jess and I also made these fun cookies for our husbands for Valentine’s Day!

If you’d like try a new cookie recipe, try the Sesame Seed & Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies I made!

February 2013: new house

The most exciting news for us this month: we bought a new house!!!  Our 1 bedroom condo sold and we’ve moved to a bigger house!  Yay for extra space!  Still in DC, just a different neighborhood (which means, more adventures)!

February 2013: old kitchen

With the move, we had to say good-bye to our fifth floor kitchen.  This is where the blog started, but don’t worry, we’ll be sticking to the original blog name.  The last food we made there were the Sesame Seed & Dark Chocolate Chunk Cookies.

February 2013: organization

As we’re slowly unpacking all of our boxes, we also got some new housewarming gifts!  Thanks Aunt Kate for these awesome OXO containers- a perfect gift for a new pantry!

February 2013: pizza

We’ve already had some visitors this past week, our new kitchen and living room layout is perfect for entertaining.  Need some ideas for foods to make when you have visitors?  (Above is the Apple & Smoked Cheese Pizza.)

Appetizers: Apples, Blue Cheese & Honey; Fig & Arugula Flatbread; Fresh Corn Salsa; Roasted Mushrooms with Parsley; Spinach & Artichoke Dip;

Entrees: Beef & Rice Stuffed Zucchini; Vegetable Coq au Vin; Baingan Bharta; Bok Choy & Mushroom Bulgur; Lamb, Carrot & Turnip Stuffed Cabbage;

Brunch: Mushroom Shallot Frittata; Smokey Quiche; Zucchini Bread;

Dessert: Baklava; Blueberry-Rhubarb Crumble; Coconut Macaroons with Chocolate; Rum Raisin Ice Cream; Tart Cherry Pie;

February 2013: soup

I finished off the month by checking out a new restaurant in Chinatown- Daikaya (the new ramen spot).  The downstairs opened up on February 14th, and currently they are serving 4 different types of traditional ramen soup.

Over the last 5 years I have learned that DC is a small city.  Turns out my new friend Carol, who I met at Back on My Feet, knows a fellow DC blogger who has been participating in the Food Matters Project.  Also a runner, Meg has her own food blog, Fledgling Foodie.  It was wonderful to finally meet her, and it’s always nice to have more foodie friends!

Can’t wait for all new things in March!  Do any of you have any fun plans?

Sausage, Egg & Cheese Breakfast Casserole

As I’ve mentioned before, Sam and I do a lot of running.  Currently, we’re training for the Rock ‘n Roll USA Half Marathon, which is held in DC in March!  Are any of you running it?  I would love to see some bloggers and readers out there!

For me, the hardest part about training for distance races (halfs, fulls, etc) is providing your body with enough nutrition and energy.  Specifically, the day you do your long run- ours tend to be Saturdays.  What can you eat after a run during which you’ve burned over 1,000 calories?  A burger definitely hits the spot, but I some mornings all I want are eggs.

A couple of weeks ago, I was perusing my Google Reader and I saw the perfect post-long run breakfast dish.  It was from Liza, of (a)Musing Foodie- a fellow blogger I met at the Eat, Write, Retreat Food Blog Conference.  The best part was, it’s a dish you put together the night before, and just pop it into the oven in the morning.

Sausage, Egg & Cheese Breakfast Casserole

Even if you don’t have a long run planned for this Saturday, this is a perfect dish for your brunch guests.  Easy, delicious and very versatile!

Sausage, Egg & Cheese Breakfast Casserole

Sausage, Egg & Cheese Breakfast Casserole
Adapted from: (a)Musing Foodie

Liza used a baguette, I did not have one on hand- so I used leftover whole-wheat bread from Trader Joe’s that had flaxseeds and sunflowers seeds in it.  Feel free to use what you have in your bread box!  Additionally, use any type of milk product for the 2 1/2 cups of liquid (regular milk, soy milk, almond milk, etc)- I ran out of the soy milk so I substituted the rest with the half ‘n half.

2 cups of bread, cubed
6 slices of bacon
1 large onion, chopped
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeño, chopped (optional)
1 lb Polish sausage, cut into small pieces
8 oz sharp cheddar cheese, grated
2 cups fresh spinach, roughly chopped
1/4 cup green onions, chopped
10 large eggs
2 cups soy milk
1/2 cup half ‘n half
1 tbsp Worcestershire sauce
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper

Spray a 9×13” baking dish with cooking spray. Then spread the bread cubes on the bottom of the baking dish.

Heat up a large skillet, place the bacon on it and heat it up until crispy on both sides.  Set aside on a paper towel, but leave the bacon grease in the pan.  Then add in the onion, let it cook until translucent over medium heat, about 5 minutes.  Stir in the garlic and jalapeño, cook for another 2-3 minutes.  Next, add in the sausage and cook for about 5-10 minutes, until it begins to brown.  Add all of these ingredients into a large bowl.

Once the bacon has cooled off, chop it up and add it to the bowl.  Then mix in cheese, spinach, and green onions.  Once the meats and vegetables are mixed, spread this out over the bread cubes in the baking dish.

Next, in a medium bowl whisk together the eggs, soy milk, half and half, Worcestershire sauce, salt, and pepper.  Then pour this mixture over the layers in the casserole dish, and gently press down so the liquid drips down.

Cover the casserole, and let it sit overnight in the fridge.

Once you’re ready to cook it, preheat the oven to 375ºF.  Bake the casserole covered with aluminum foil for 45 minutes.  Then uncover it, and bake it for another 15 minutes when it starts to bubble.

Let it rest for 10-15 minutes before serving.

November 2012 Review

And we’re back with the monthly reviews on Fifth Floor Kitchen!  What photos did I capture on my iPhone this past month?

Interested in past months?  Check them out: May June July August

November Review 1

This was taken on our last day of our honeymoon in Phuket, Thailand.  Check out our posts about it here.

November Review 2

First week back from our honeymoon and we were excited for food from the farmer’s market!  We got: arugula, turnips, a pie pumpkin, apples, pears, sweet potatoes, cheese & eggs from the Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market.

November Review 3

Don’t know what to eat for breakfast?  Check out this post on making Fall Granola- perfect to mix with yogurt or milk!

November Review 4

Sam and I visited our friend Beth in Baltimore.  We loved this place: Abbey Burger Bistro, make your own burger (and it’s got some good beers as well).

November Review 6

While in Baltimore we stopped by the Baltimore Farmer’s Market & Bazaar (check out the post about it here).  Sam pickled the cucumbers, and we enjoyed the spicy cheese & duck eggs.  But the honey butter is the best- have you had honey butter?  If not, you’re missing out!

November Review 5

My friend Alix and I got a chance to see Deb Perelman from Smitten Kitchen!  There were so many people at Politics & Prose to see her!  Checkout her cookbook and blog for some great recipes!

November Review 7

We have 2 cats who have really enjoyed getting wedding gifts.  Well, mostly the boxes that the gifts come in- Van Gogh loves to relax among the bubble wrap and paper!  One of the many gifts was a cookbook- and we tried this Shepherd’s Pie recipe!

November Reivew 8

Another Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market week!  The goodies were: bok choy, yogurt (to go with Fall Granola), broccoli, cheese, apples, pear and arugula!

November Review 9

Last May, when I attended Eat, Write, Retreat (check out my post about it) I met a lot of wonderful bloggers.  One of them was Olga (blog: Mango & Tomato; Twitter: @MangoTomato), we tried out the new DGS Delicatessen in Dupont Circle for lunch, and I had a delicious Salmon Pastrami Sandwich on a bagel.

November Review 10

As I mentioned, we had a low-key Thanksgiving.  After running the So Others Might Eat Turkey Trot 5K- Sam, myself and his brother went to Hill Country Barbecue for an all-you-can-eat dinner.  As always, Hill Country did not disappoint!  Although my favorite was the green bean casserole- it’s been so long since I’ve had it!

November Review 11

The past week’s Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market finds were: eggs, turnips, cheese, pears, eggs & meat sticks!

Fall Granola

Everyone is running around to finish up their Thanksgiving shopping list- it’s a little hectic!  Although Thanksgiving may not be one of my favorite holidays (my Birthday is #1), it’s definitely up there near the top.  It’s the one time out of the year that everyone considers what/who they are grateful for, and shares the day with loved ones.

Sam and I will be staying in D.C.- after a long honeymoon, our annual leave has to be replenished.  We’re starting off Thursday morning with a Turkey Trot- it’s been our little tradition since we first started dating.  We’ll be running the So Others Might Eat Turkey Trot 5K!  Are any of you running tomorrow?

Since all of us may be eating too much during the day, I thought a great way to start the morning would be with some fall granola!

The fall flavors in this granola are slight, and a perfect pairing with Greek yogurt, or mixed with fresh milk.  This recipe is very flexible- if you don’t have a specific ingredient, feel to swap what you do have in your cupboards this fall day.

Fall Granola
Adapted from: Eat, Live, Run

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp allspice
1 tbsp unsalted butter
2 cups raw pumpkin seeds
1/4 cup honey
1 tbsp brown sugar
4 cups old fashioned oats
1 tsp salt
1 cup maple syrup
3 tbsp coconut oil
1 cup dried cranberries

In a small bowl mix together the cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and allspice to make the spice mix.  Set aside.

On a skillet, over medium heat, melt the butter.  Then add the pumpkin seeds and 1 tsp of the spice mix.  Toast seeds for about 3 minutes, or until they are lightly browned.  Then add the honey and brown sugar.  Continue to cook until they are incorporated, for another 3-4 minutes.  Next, spread out the seeds onto a sheet tray, allowing it to cool for at least 15 minutes.  Once it’s cooled off, break it apart using a spatula.

In a large bowl mix together the rest of the spice mix, oats and salt.

Add the maple syrup and coconut oil into a small saucepan over high heat.  First, bring to a boil and then simmer for an additional 2 minutes- continue to stir.  Pour the maple syrup sauce over the oats mixture into the large bowl.  Toss well until everything is evenly coated.

Preheat the oven to 325ºF.  Spread out the oats onto a sheet try (or two).  Bake for 25-30 minutes, moving and flipping the oats every 5 minutes.  Allow the oats to cool.

Lastly, toss the pumpkin seeds, oats mixture and dried cranberries together.  Eat it as a snack, or over yogurt.

Squash Blossom & Bacon Frittata

Over the last couple of years, I noticed many squash blossom recipes, but I could never find any.  This year when I spotted them at the Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market, and finally bought some!

Squash blossoms grow at the end of the bud that turns into a squash.  They tend to be unavailable in stores since they are very perishable, so a farmer’s market is the best place to find them.  They can be eaten raw, or incorporated into recipes.

About the time I bought the squash blossoms, we had a significant amount of bacon in our fridge.  Days before, my friends and I went blueberry picking, and stopped over at the Lancaster County Dutch Market in Germantown, MD.  There are a number of different vendors that sell desserts, salads, meats and veggies.  Everything that I bought was delicious, including that bacon!

So rather than just frying the squash blossoms, I decided on a breakfast frittata.  It’d be a perfect place for the bacon and squash blossoms to join together.  I ended up making it the day before, and it was enjoyed on a beautiful Saturday morning with some coffee!

Squash Blossom & Bacon Frittata
Inspired by: Sweet Sugar Bean

If you don’t have bacon, or don’t want to use it, feel free to use olive oil when sauteing all the veggies.  Also, if you don’t have bacon or squash blossoms- change up the ingredients to what’s in your fridge.  Frittatas are perfect for “cleaning on the fridge”!

8 eggs
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
pinch of red pepper flakes (optional)
1 tbsp chopped chives
9 pieces of bacon
3/4 cup chopped leeks
1 small onion, chopped
3 garlic cloves, minced
8 squash blossoms
10 grape tomatoes, halved
2 oz goat cheese, crumbled

Preheat the oven to 350ºF.

In a medium-sized bowl, lightly beat together the eggs, salt, pepper, red pepper flakes, and chives.

In a cast iron, cook the bacon over medium heat.  When all of the pieces are done to your liking, remove and put them aside on a paper towel, leaving the bacon fat in the cast iron.  Once the bacon has cooled off, chop up into smaller pieces.

Next, add the onion and leeks into the cast iron (that has the bacon fat).  Cook for about 3-5 minutes, or until the onion is translucent.  Add in the garlic and cook for another 3 minutes.  Remove from pan, and set aside.

In the hot cast iron, set the squash blossoms, and cook them on each side for approximately 30 seconds.  Then remove them from the pan.

Next sprinkle the onions, leeks and bacon into the cast iron.  Over those ingredients, pour the egg mixture.  Arrange the squash blossoms and tomatoes on top.  Quickly, scatter the goat cheese around the cast iron.

Cook over medium heat for about 5 minutes, or until the egg begins to set on the edges.  Then transfer the cast iron into the preheated oven, bake for 10 minutes.