Tag Archives: egg

Food Matters Project #38: Spinach Cobb Salad with a Caper-Anchovy Vinaigrette

I absolutely love salads for lunch!  If you choose one that has fresh ingredients, lots of vegetables and a delicious dressing- it’s the perfect dish that won’t weigh you down, or make you sleepy in the afternoon.  Fortunately, this week’s Food Matters Project recipe was a salad I can add to our meal rotation!

When I saw that Sara, of Pidge’s Pantry, chose Mark Bittman’s recipe for the Mediterranean Cobb Salad, I was excited to see what changes he made to the salad to pack it with flavor and nutrients.  I’ve never been too happy after ordering a cobb salad at a restaurant- it’s usually served with iceberg lettuce, tomato, bacon, egg, and blue cheese.  Not the healthiest of ingredients, and definitely not a refreshing salad.

I made additional changes to Bittman’s recipe.  I wanted the salad to have a bit more nutrients and vegetables, so I mixed the romaine with spinach.  I also had some red bell peppers, cucumbers and green onions which I added to the salad.  For those who are not fans of anchovies, I can sense your apprehension- I had that once myself.  But if you’ve had a good dressing with anchovies in it, then you just might be a convert.  This dressing fit perfectly with the salad, providing that tangy, salty flavor that it needed.  But if you’re not that adventurous just yet, then double the capers, and skip the anchovies.  You’ll make this salad again- so there is plenty of time to try new ingredients down the road.

Check out Sara’s version of the Mediterranean Cobb Salad, and all other Food Matters Project participants variations here.

With spring here, and summer just around the corner, here are some additional salads we’ve shared and eaten in the past: Greek Panzanella Salad, Lentil & Summer Vegetable Salad, Penn Quarter Farmer’s Market Salad, Spicy Asian Salad with Sunflower Seeds, Arugula Salad with Eggs & Mushrooms, and Asparagus, Tuna & Bean Salad.

Spinach Cobb Salad with a Caper-Anchovy Vinaigrette

Spinach Cobb Salad with a Caper-Anchovy Vinaigrette
Adapted from: Food Matters Cookbook (pg 149)

I’m not providing specific amount of the ingredients since this can be tailored to how many people you plan on feeding, or if you want more of certain ingredients.  The dressing produces about a 1/2 cup of liquid- enough for at least 4 servings.  If you don’t want to use anchovies in the dressing, just double the amount of capers.

spinach, chopped
romaine lettuce, chopped
tomato, chopped
red bell pepper, chopped
cucumber, chopped
hard-boiled egg, chopped/crumbled
chickpeas
green onion, finely chopped

Dressing:
1/3 cup olive oil
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
3 anchovy fillets, with a bit of their oil
1 tbsp capers
2 tbsp parsley
pinch of pepper

To make the vinaigrette combine the oil, vinegar, anchovies, capers, parsley and pepper into a food processor.  Blend together until a creamy emulsion forms, within 30 seconds.  Taste and add more vinegar or pepper if necessary.

Mix the spinach and romaine lettuce together on a large plate.  Then spoon the ingredients on top (the order doesn’t matter): tomatoes, red bell peppers, cucumbers, egg, chickpeas and green onions.  Then drizzle the vinaigrette on top, right before serving.

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.

Egg & Swiss Chard Tacos

There are some days I just don’t feel like cooking.  Yes, I think everyone has this problem- even food bloggers.  But we would like to continue to eat healthy, and not always call for take-out, or grab dinner at the restaurant around the corner.  So for those kinds of days, I look for recipes that are simple, yet still delicious.

Egg Taco 2

This Egg & Swiss Chard Taco is inspiring and easy- perfect for a lazy Sunday dinner, something quick on a hurried Thursday night, or a perfect breakfast dish Saturday morning.  Love the versatility!  If you’re not a fan of Swiss Chard, swap it out for spinach, kale, or any winter greens which might be available in your area- it will still be tasty!

Egg Taco 1

Egg & Swiss Chard Tacos
Adapted from: Food & Wine (January 2013)
Serving: 6 tacos

1 tbsp olive oil
1/2 large onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 jalapeño, finely chopped (seeded or optional)
1 large Swiss chard bunch, finely chopped
5 eggs
1 tbsp half and half
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (optional)
1 tbsp butter
6 corn tortillas

Additional taco toppings:
sour cream
salsa verde
tomatoes
cilantro
cheddar cheese/Mexican cheese

In a large skillet heat olive oil, then add the onion.  Cook over medium heat, stirring, until the onion is starting to brown.  Then add in the garlic and jalapeño pepper, cook for another 3 minutes.  Finally, add in the Swiss chard and cook, stirring, until it softens- about 5 minutes.  Put the ingredients to the side.

In a cup whisk together eggs, half and half, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.  Heat a non-stick sauté pan over medium heat.  Add the butter, let it melt and pour in the egg mixture.  Let the eggs cook for about a minute, until the bottom starts to set.  Using a rubber spatula, gently push one side of the egg into the center of the pan, repeat with all edges.  Once there is no liquid left, turn off the heat from the scrambled eggs.

Next, dress your corn tortillas.  Spoon out sour cream, add the Swiss chard mixture, scrambled eggs, then top with salsa verde, cheddar cheese, cilantro and tomatoes on top.

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.

Book Club: Dill & Egg Potato Salad and Spring Vegetable Potato Salad

I hosted my Book Club at our house a couple of weeks ago, there were 8 of us here to talk about The Corrections, and catch up on what’s going on in our lives.  Check out what else was on the Book Club menu!

I almost forgot to post the potato salad recipes from when I hosted Book Club.  Since summer is here, these are the perfect dishes to bring over to a friends BBQ, or for a picnic.  I wasn’t sure what kind of potato salad everyone liked, so I decided to make 2 different ones, hopefully satisfying everyone’s taste buds.

I ended up cooking all of the potatoes together to save time, and just divided them amongst the two salads.  Both can be made the day before, just don’t add the vinaigrette until the last minute, or else the salad will get soggy!

Dill & Egg Potato Salad
Adapted from: So Good and Tasty

6-8 baby red potatoes, washed
1/4 cup chives, minced
1/4 cup dill, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
1 tbsp whole grain mustard
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper
1/4 red pepper flakes (optional)
2 hard boiled eggs, chopped

Add potatoes to a large pot, pour water over them.  Turn on the heat and bring water to a boil, cook the potatoes until they are soft in the middle so a knife can easily pierce through (the time will depend on the size of the potatoes).  When the potatoes are done, rinse them under cold water.  Then chop them into quarters or smaller pieces.

To make the dressing add all of these ingredients into a small bowl, then whisk them together: chives, dill, garlic, vinegar, olive oil, Dijon mustard, whole grain mustard, salt, pepper and red pepper flakes.

Toss the potatoes, eggs and dressing together- then serve.

Spring Vegetable Potato Salad
Adapted from: Smitten Kitchen

8-10 fingerling potatoes
1 lb asparagus, chopped into 1 inch pieces
2 cups sugar snap peas, cut into halves
4 radishes, thinly sliced
4 spring onions, chopped (or green onions)
4 garlic cloves, minced
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tbsp whole grain mustard
1 tbsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp red wine vinegar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp pepper

Add potatoes to a large pot, pour water over them.  Turn on the heat and bring water to a boil, cook the potatoes until they are soft in the middle so a knife can easily pierce through (the time will depend on the size of the potatoes).  When the potatoes are done, rinse them under cold water.  Then chop them into quarters or smaller pieces, add them to a large bowl.

Bring water to a boil in a small pot.  Add in the asparagus and cook it for 2-3 minutes.  Drain it and place it in a bowl of ice cold water for 3 minutes.  Drain it again, and add it into the bowl filled with potatoes.

To the potatoes and asparagus, add the: sugar snap peas, radishes, spring onions and garlic.

In a small bowl whisk together the ingredients for the dressing: olive oil, whole grain mustard, Dijon mustard, red wine vinegar, salt and pepper.

Finally, toss the dressing with the vegetables and serve.