Posts Tagged ‘Cooking’

Spring Scramble

In Cooking, Uncategorized on April 18, 2011 at 7:51 pm

Soft scrambled eggs with ricotta and chives.  Light, fluffy, creamy, tangy… need I say more.

Spring Scramble

4 eggs
1 1/2 Tbsp half & half
1 Tbsp chives, minced
1/4 tsp coarse salt, plus additional for serving
1/8 tsp fresh cracked pepper
1 Tbsp butter
2 slices of bread, for toasting (favorite kind…)

Directions: Whisk eggs, chives, half & half, salt (fleur de sel is a great choice) and pepper in medium bowl. Melt butter in heavy medium nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add egg mixture and stir with silicone spatula until eggs are almost cooked but still runny in parts, do not over stir – this will make your eggs tough, you can tilt the pan as necessary to distribute uncooked liquid. Remove from heat. Fold ricotta gently into eggs.

Meanwhile prepare bread as desired: toaster, broiler with butter, on a griddle… Top bread with spring scramble, sprinkle with additional salt, pepper and extra butter if desired. Enjoy!

We had breakfast for dinner – I love it.  I remember as a child thinking breakfast for dinner was magically.  Later my grandmother confessed it was an easy and cheap way to get dinner on the table in a hurry.  It’s true, but still special in its own weird way! The chives bring a fresh peppy element to the eggs and the ricotta takes them over the top! Next time I am going to do a more Greek style scramble with feta.


These are a few of my favorite things…

In Cooking, Uncategorized on March 23, 2011 at 6:06 pm

Avocado Toast

So simple.
Grilled Butter Toast.
Toast hot from the toaster works too.
Salt & Pepper to taste.
… sometime I smear my toast with a wedge of laughing cow cheese first. Divine.

Fancy Grilled Cheese

is a grilled cheese sandwich made on Texas Toast.
brushed with bacon grease and slathered in butter.
Toasted on a hot griddle,
with pepper-jack cheese x2.
and fresh cilantro.
Salt & Pepper to taste.

Avocados are nature’s butter. They are delicious for every meal, even dessert and snack time too. I’m obsessed and hope you enjoy these soon!

Emerald Style Champ

In Cooking, Uncategorized on March 16, 2011 at 9:31 pm

My inbox has been a flood with recipes for Irish Soda Bread , Irish Coffee, Colcannon and Corn Beef.  While they all make me hungry… this is my favorite Irish side dish – Champ.  Sure it looks like colcannon, but champ is native to the Northern Ireland. Champ is traditionally made with spring onions and no bacon, but I prefer it with leeks and to cook my leeks in bacon fat.  Actually leeks are one of my favorite vegetables and highly underused if you ask me.  No one asked… but there it is.

Emerald Style Champ:

1-2 large leeks, sliced and washed
4-6 pieces of bacon
2 pounds potatoes, peeled and halved
2/3 cup heavy cream
1/3 cup milk
1-2 tsp salt, or to taste
1/3 cup butter, plus additional for serving
1 fresh cracked pepper to taste

Directions: Peel and dice potatoes; place into a large pot and fill with enough water to cover.  Bring to a boil, and cook until tender, about 20 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook bacon in a skillet (rendering fat) and place cooked bacon aside.  Add prepared leeks to the grease and lightly season with salt and pepper; cook leeks until tender and liquids have been absorbed; leeks will begin to brown and char – best part!!.  (Note: if this is not enough fat to cook the leeks down (until tender), add a small amount of white wine or water). Remove from heat and allow pan to begin cooling; add milk and cream to pan and stir.  This will warm the cream and milk while infusing with the flavor of the leeks.

Drain cooked potatoes; roughly mash with salt and butter.  Stir in milk and leek mixture until evenly mixed.  Season with fresh cracked pepper and garnish with additional butter and cooked bacon pieces if desired.

These are amazing.  They are more than just potatoes I promise.  Something about all the butter, the leeks, and the butter that makes this amazing by itself or as a side dish.  Happy St. Patrick’s Day and happy cooking!!


Loot: Apricot-Pepper Glazed Bacon!!!

In Cooking, Loot, Uncategorized on January 24, 2011 at 3:29 pm

It is nice to have foodie friends.  Foodie friends are fun to eat with… foodie friends are fun to shop with and well foodie friends also love to make and give food.  Yeah for them!  Some of those friends are extra special and you name your shortbread recipes after them :).  I have such a friend and she started making jams last year.  They are divine.  You of course do not have to use this jam for this recipe, but if you are so lucky to own some… then you should!

If you are thinking bacon??? I am on diet. Remember it is important to treat yourself and to eat things you crave – helps to keep you on track (moderation not deprivation is the key!!).  Plus according to the package labels and my research on nutritiondata.com for three pieces it is approx: 130 cal; 4.5g fat; and 7.0g protein.  Easily done with most meals.

This stuff is magical… can’t you tell from the picture???


Apricot-Pepper Glazed Bacon

One package bacon (use what you like – we use center cut)
1/4 cup apricot preserves (if using plain, you can add a touch of vanilla bean/extract)
fresh cracked black-pepper
Directions: Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Place bacon on large non-stick cookie sheet.  Brush bacon with apricot preserves; and then add generous amount of pepper.  Bake for 8 – 10 minutes, until it begins to turn golden and edges begin to blacken.  Remove from oven; turn and coat underside with remaining apricot preserves (additional pepper is not needed, unless you just love pepper); return to the oven for an additional 5-8 minutes or until it is cooked to your bacon standards.

I am pretty sure that in a past life bacon and apricots were soul mates.  Once you try this bacon you will agree.  The bacon takes on a candy-like chewiness, the charred bits are this dark caramelized and crunchy kind of heaven.  Of course the apricot adds this sweet warmness to the whole thing and the pepper adds a spicy undertone that plays well with both flavors (bacon and apricot).
P.S. Thanks AJ for the amazing jam – as always you inspire me!

Black Eyed Peas – a southern tradition

In Cooking, Uncategorized on January 2, 2011 at 4:51 pm

Does your family partake in black-eyed peas for New Year’s Day?  My family celebrates this tradition, which is a New Year’s ritual for future prosperity.  Apparently it is a southern thing though, because my yankee in-laws do not partake.   I still love them, but I also love peas and think any excuse is a good one.

Since I also love soup… I decided to take a popular Italian bean soup, Pasta e Fagioli (which is actual pronounced pasta fazool – yeah I didn’t get that either…), and I gave it a southern twist.

Southern Pasta e Fagioli (serves 4)

1 Tbsp EVOO

1/2 pound center cut pork, cubed (small)

3 slices of bacon (for rendered fat)

1/2 cup onion, diced

1/2 cup celery, diced

1/2 cup carrot, diced

1 clove of garlic

1/2 tsp rosemary, dried

1/2 tsp thyme, dried

1 bay leaf

pinch red pepper flakes, optional

14 ounces of chicken stock

14 ounces of diced tomatoes, canned with juice

1 can of black-eyed peas

3/4 cup Ditalini, small pasta (means little thimbles in Italian – so cute!)

1 tsp lemon zest, optional (I love the freshness this adds)

salt and pepper to taste

Directions: Heat  EVOO in a heavy large saucepan over medium heat.  Pat pork dry with paper towel and season with salt and pepper; cook in oil once heated.  Once meat has browned remove from pan, this does not have to be fully cooked as it will finish cooking in soup.  Add the bacon, cook to render fat; remove bacon and add onion and whole smashed garlic and saute until the onion is tender, about 3 minutes.  Add celery and carrots and saute for an additional 3-4 minutes; remove from heat until ready to combine in soup.  Discard the garlic, it has fulfilled its garlic destiny.

Puree half of the peas or smash with a fork.  In a large pot add the broth, tomatoes the bean puree, browned pork and herbs.  Bring to a simmer over medium-high heat, then decrease the heat to medium and add the dry pasta, cook for about 8 minutes. Add the remaining whole peas and vegetables; heat through.  Season the soup with ground black pepper, red pepper flakes, and stir in lemon zest. Ladle the soup into bowls. Sprinkle with some Parmesan, EVOO or topping of your choice! *add more broth or tomato juice as needed if soup is too thick

This is the first time I have eaten black-eyed peas in soup.  It was different and very good, but honestly there are so many things that are good about the soup that black-eyed peas are not the “star”.  So I guess if you don’t like peas this may be a good way to get your traditional New Year’s serving in 2012.  Also the pork was not a traditional ingredient, but I wanted to “beef” up the protein as it were, but the recipe would be just as good without the extra meat.  This soup was delicious and despite how long the post is… this came together fairly quick with only some minor chopping prep!

Healthy and Blessings to you all in 2011!! 😀