Month: February 2018

Scrambled Egg and Potato Breakfast Casserole

Scrambled Egg and Potato Breakfast Casserole

There is nothing like a simple breakfast casserole that makes my busy weekends less chaotic. This casserole has become my arsenal when I’m short on time, but know the kids need to eat something to hold them over for several hours (lets make that a few hours because they are always hungry).

One of the things I do which you may not see in similar recipe is baking my sliced potatoes before adding them to the casserole for about 10 to 15 minutes. There is nothing more annoying than biting into a raw piece of potato.

You can also substitute the whole eggs for egg whites if you want to make this dish more health conscious. Also, for those of you who eat meat you might want to consider a maple bacon or a spicy chorizo to add a little personality to your casserole.

Breakfast Egg and Potato Casserole

This dish is perfect for those busy weekends, when you have a hungry family to feed. 

Course Breakfast
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 50 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon of olive oil
  • 1 small onion chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper diced
  • 2 medium potatoes I like red potatoes, diced into 1/2 cubes
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt separated into 1/2 teaspoon and 1/4 teaspoon
  • 3/4 teaspoon ground black pepper divided into 1/2 teaspoon and 1/4 teaspoon
  • 5 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup cheddar cheese or whichever type of cheese you like shredded (optional)

Instructions

  1. Preheat over to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a "9 x 9" casserole dish and set to the side.
  2. In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Sauté the onions for 1 minute. Add the green peppers, potatoes, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and 1/2 teaspoon black pepper and continue to sauté for another 4 to 5 minutes until potatoes become tender. Add potato, onion and green peppers to the casserole dish.
  3. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs and remaining salt and pepper (I omitted the salt here). Pour the egg mixture evenly over the potatoes, onions and green peppers. You can either add the cheese to the egg mixture so it is distributed with the potatoes, or sprinkle on top 10 minutes before you remove the casserole.
  4. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, or until eggs are firmly cooked.
  5. Let cool about 5 to 7 minutes and serve warm.

That’s it. Simple & Homemade. 

Sweet Potato Hash

Sweet Potato Hash

Who doesn’t love a good potato hash with their breakfast eggs? However, when you add a “sweet” in front of those potatoes, it takes me to another level of happy. I love cooking with different colors, so please ignore the fact that I used orange bell peppers instead of green. However, these were just as delicious with or without green peppers and feel free to use whatever you happen to have on hand.

Sweet potatoes are have easily become a comfort food of mine. Seriously! I can eat them every day, and knowing they are jam packed with good nutrients makes my love for them even greater. They are filled with goodies like:

Vitamin A (beta carotene, hence the color) – great for vision, a healthy immune system and helps your organs work properly

Vitamin C – a powerful antioxidant, helps body develop and maintain healthy skin, blood vessels and connective tissues

Fiber – keeps your bowels moving, uh regularly

Vitamin B6 – helps calm and maintain and healthy nervous system, important for normal metabolism functioning

Sweet potato hash is a great compliment to any breakfast dish and the perfect substitution to regular potatoes.

Course Breakfast
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 40 minutes
Servings 4 people

Ingredients

  • 2 Sweet Potatoes
  • 1 Green pepper or whichever colored pepper you like
  • Half of a medium sized onion
  • Sea salt
  • Ground black pepper
  • 1 Tablespoon of olive oil
  • Dried rosemary optional

Instructions

  1. Preheat over to 425
  2. Peel the skin of your sweet potato and chop the potato into small cubes, place to the side
  3. Chop up 1 pepper into small cubes, place to the side
  4. Chop your onion and sauté it in a pan with a olive oil until onions become translucent
  5. Add your sweet potatoes and sauté for 10 to 15 making sure to keep them moving in the pan they should still be tender and not fully cooked through
  6. Add your chopped pepper to the pan and cook for 2 minutes
  7. Add your seasonings to taste
  8. Place your sweet potato hash in a oven safe container and place in the oven for about 10 to 15 minutes until cooked
  9. Garnish with dried rosemary (if you would like to add an extra level of flavoring, don't use too much because rosemary is strong)

Simple & Homemade 

Balsamic Vinaigrette Brussels Sprouts

Balsamic Vinaigrette Brussels Sprouts

I love my vegetables but there is something about roasted vegetables that send me over the edge in a great way. I can eat anything roasted: sweet potatoes, broccoli, carrots and Brussels sprouts. Roasted Brussels sprouts are bae because it leaves them with a slight crunch on their little leaves. My 13 year old asks me if I can “burn them a little,” because she too loves that little crunch. Burning isn’t the goal but these are super simple and a great way to add veggies to your meals.

Try adding sliced almonds for that added crunch and texture. You can thank me later!

So what is so special about Brussels sprouts? I’m so happy you asked! These miniature cabbage heads are nutrient dense serving as an excellent source of Vitamin C and K. Brussels sprouts being a part of the cruciferous vegetable family have cancer prevention and cholesterol lowering properties, and help to normalize the thyroid. No need to skimp on these any longer, so eat up!

Balsamic Vinaigrette with Roasted Brussels Sprouts

The perfect way to add vegetables everyone will love to your dinner table. The little crunch is irresistible.

Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 25 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 1/2 pounds Brussels Sprouts
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin Olive Oil don't use the cheap stuff. The tastier the oil, the tastier the dish
  • 1 tablespoon Balsamic Vinegar
  • Sea Salt to taste
  • Fresh Cracked Pepper to taste

Instructions

  1. 1. Preheat oven to roast at 375°F. 

    2. Peel the outer, beat-up layers of the brussels sprouts off.  Trim the ends and cut brussels sprouts in half. 

    3. In a large bowl, toss together olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt and fresh cracked black pepper. Then add the brussels sprouts and toss evenly with the oil mixture. 

    4. Lightly oil a sheet pan, then spread out the brussels sprouts, cut side down. Roast in oven for 15 min., flip the sprouts to cut side up, then roast for 10-15 minutes more or until gently browned. 

    5. Serve warm.

There you go, Simple & Homemade

Super Simple Strawberry Preserve

Super Simple Strawberry Preserve

Let’s first discuss the elephant in the middle of the room. What is the difference between jelly, jam and preserves. I have to admit, I never paid attention until I wanted to make preserves. I wanted 100% fruit and 100% natural and 100% simple so preserves seemed to be the way to go.

So, what IS the difference between jelly, jam and preserves?

Jelly is the most liquified of the three. It uses more pectin than jam in order to obtain its gel-like quality. To better explain, the fruits in jelly are cooked longer. The flavor of jelly is captured as a result of cooking it for a longer period of time. In jelly, there are no bits of fruit because the cooked fruit juice is filtered giving it a more see-through/liquified appearance.

Jam is made out of mashed fruits, sugar, and a little bit of pectin, a starchy-type substance found naturally in fruit (when heated) that makes everything gel and stick together. Jam contains fruit juice, giving it a sweet and opaque appearance. Though jam isn’t chunky with pieces of fruit, it is typically more solid and than jelly. According to the FDA, for a jar to be labeled as jam, it needs to have a “soluble-solids content” of 65 percent or greater. Something you never knew, huh?

Preserves is often used to describe your basic fruit spreads, but can also refer to a specific type of spread. Preserves is made up whole pieces of fruits that are cooked in sugar until they are soft and then put into a firm jelly or less-gelled syrupy base. This is what I am sharing today.

Unfortunately, I winged this one based off of taste, so my measurements may be off. I’ll let you determine how much sugar to add.

Here is what you will need:

1 cup of strawberries

1/4 cup of raw sugar

1 teaspoon of lemon juice

Combine everything in a pot and boil until it becomes thick and put everything into a mason jar. Just make sure you boil your jar before adding your preserve if you plan to keep it for a while. I used my preserve in two days so I just made sure the glass container I used was clean.

P.S. – I will be the first to tell you no color was added. It naturally turned out that vibrant of red.

There you go, Simple & Homemade!