breakfast

breakfast burritos w/ chicken sausage and kale

I'll be the first person to say, I'm not a morning person.  My boyfriend wakes up, hops out of bed, and can start the day immediately.  I need to get up, get my coffee, sit in bed, sip the coffee slowly, and ease into my day.  When I first started my current job, I would wake up at 5:30am and not leave the house until 7:20am.  Now I look back at all that sleep I lost, and I'm actually a little sad about it.

All that being said, I need quick breakfasts during the work week.  I can settle for smoothie kits and overnight oats, but I don't love sweet breakfasts.  Insert the breakfast burrito.  I make a batch of these on the weekend and freeze them for the coming week.  It's so easy to throw them in the microwave and eat them at home, on the go, or at work.  I love them because they keep me full for hours, and I like eating a hearty breakfast and eating lighter as the day progresses.

I love Stop & Shop's Nature's Promise Sweet Italian Sausage with Kale.  It's not necessarily breakfast sausage, but that's kind of what I like about it.  It doesn't make the burritos taste weird, just a different flavor than your standard breakfast sausage.  I like to use fresh sausage because it breaks up easier than cooked sausage.  I run my knife down the length of the sausage, then pull off the casing.

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I know this probably looks gross to most people, but I find this process oddly satisfying.

Taking that casing off really makes it much easier to break up the sausage.

I learned to fold burritos by lovingly admiring the employees at Chipotle.  But they usually don't have to do it with one hand.

After I make them, I wrap them in Saran Wrap and foil, then put them in a gallon Ziploc bag in the freezer.   To cook them, I just take the foil off and nuke the burrito for a few minutes (usually 2-4 depending on if it thawed slightly or not).

I also usually add beans and/or Trader Joe's roasted corn, but I honestly just forgot.  The beans add a bit of heartiness and the corn adds a pop of sweetness to the spicy burrito. But I really didn't miss either of them! 

Prep Time: 15
Cook Time: 10

 

Ingredients

4 chicken sausage links
1 red pepper, diced
1 jalapeno, diced
1 brussels sprouts
1Smallonion, diced
6 eggs
6 tortillas
¾ cup cheese (I used cheddar)
a few tbs ghee, olive oil, or butter
your favorite salsa and/or hot sauce

 

Preparation

Cut casing off of sausage links, cook in a little ghee, breaking up the sausage as it cooks. Add diced vegetables, season with salt, pepper, and chili powder and cook until tender. Transfer to a plate while cooking the eggs.

Whisk the eggs with some salt and pepper. Add a little ghee to the pan then add the eggs. Scramble to desired degree of doneness.

Layer tortillas with cheese, sausage and veggies mixture, eggs and salsa. Fold into a burrito.  Enjoy!

eggs benedict with scallion latkes and prosciutto

The first time I had classic eggs Benedict, I was beyond underwhelmed.  Everyone raves about it like it's such a great brunch choice, but I find it super bland and boring.  I'm not a huge English muffin lover and Canadian bacon is probably my least favorite breakfast meat, so it's not surprising that I wouldn't be a huge fan. 

I CAN say that I really enjoy variations on this brekkie standby.  It's like how "Killing My Softly" is so much better by the Fugees, the song was ok when Lori Lieberman sang it, but that flavor you get from Lauryn Hill is a complete game changer.  Anything that puts a unique spin on the classic is something I can get behind.  Smoked salmon, crab cakes, I've even had eggs benny atop cornbread (which is going to be on here soon).  So I figured I'd put together some of my favorite things to make an eggs Benedict that I could actually get excited to eat.

I had to transport the potatoes to my boyfriend’s apartment and he doesn't have a food processor.  I'm pretty happy with my current arm workout routine, so I didn't really want to grate two cups of potatoes by hand, and I figured out a great way to do some of the work ahead of time.  Besides, you'll get enough of a workout with all the egg whisking for the hollandaise sauce.

The actual instructions are below, but if you're grating the potatoes ahead of time, you basically blanch them, flash freeze, and put them in a ziplock in the freezer.  This is great because you can keep the grated potatoes in your freezer for things like quick breakfast hash or hash browns.  Of course, if you're making these the same day you can just grate and throw them into the mixture, you don't have to boil them or pre-cook them in any way. 

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Ingredients

For the Latkes:
3 cups grated russet potatoes
2 tbsp thinly sliced scallions
1 small-medium onion, grated
¼ tsp garlic powder
1 egg
2 tbs flour (or matzo meal)
Salt and pepper to taste
¼ cup olive oil (for pan)

For Poached Eggs:
4 eggs
1 tbs vinegar
a pinch of salt

For the Hollandaise Sauce:
2 egg yolks
¼ cup (½ stick) melted and cooled butter
1 tbs lemon juice
Few dashes of hot sauce (I used cholula)

For Eggs Benedict Assembly:
4 slices prosciutto
1 cup arugula

Make the Latkes:
To grate potatoes ahead of time:  Bring a pot of water to a gently boil.  Grate the taters, put them in a pot of boiling water for 2-3 minutes then pour the contents of the pot into a colander.  Next, spread the potatoes onto a kitchen towel and ring out all of the extra moisture.  Spread them on a baking sheet and freeze for 10-15 to flash freeze them.  Put potatoes into a Ziploc and throw them into the freezer.  When you're ready to make the latkes, take the potatoes out of the freezer, let them slightly or fully thaw, spread them on a kitchen towel towel and squeeze out excess moisture.

Preheat oven to 250 degrees or “warm” function.  Line a plate with paper towels.  Grate potatoes using a food processor or hand grater.  Lay potatoes on a kitchen towel and squeeze out excess moisture.  Combine potatoes, scallions, onion, garlic powder, flour, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.  Make little potato pancake patties out of two heaping tablespoons of the mixture, by rolling into a rough ball and flattening to ½ inch.  Heat oil over medium-high heat, don’t let oil get too hot or the latkes will burn.  Place latkes in pan, let cook for 3-4 minutes per side, until golden on the outside.  Transfer latkes to a paper towel lined plate when finished, crack a little salt on top, and put the plate into the warm oven. 

Poach the eggs:
In a medium sauce pan or a shallow deep pan, bring a few inches of water and 2 tbs vinegar to boil.  Crack eggs into ramekins, then gently pour eggs into boiling water.  Turn off the heat, put the lid on, set a timer for 6 minutes and leave the eggs alone.  After 6 minutes, use a slotted spoon to gently take the eggs out of the water.

Hollandaise:
In a medium sized saucepan, heat water until simmering.  Place a stainless steel or glass bowl on top of the saucepan (or use an actual double boiler) and whisk constantly for 2-3 minutes.  Drizzle in melted butter and continue to whisk until mixture doubles in volume and is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon.  Add in a few dashes of hot sauce, salt and pepper and mix until combined.

To assemble:
Layer ¼ cup arugula, prosciutto, poached egg, then top with hollandaise and chopped scallions for garnish.  Serve immediately.

huevos rancheros

Huevos rancheros is one of my favorite hangover breakfasts (or let's be honest, lunch).  Loaded with protein, good fats, fiber and some carbs, it fills me up without weighing me down toooo much.  I’m considering replacing the fried eggs with poached eggs next time, just to make it a little lighter.

This was actually my first time making huevos rancheros, and it came out great!  I’m sure my recipe could use some tweaks, and I will tweak as I make it more, but my first time it came out so good that I just had to share!  Depending on who’s eating, this can make up to 4 servings.  I was a little ambitious thinking I would finish two loaded tortillas.

Makes 2 servings

For salsa ranchera:

  •  1 (28 oz.) can of tomatoes (I used Glen Muir Fire Roasted)
  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • 1 small onion or shallot (I used half a shallot)
  • 2 chilies (jalapenos or serranos) 
  • ¼ cup fresh cilantro
  • 1 tsp chili powder
  • 1 tsp smoked paprika
  • 1 tsp ancho chili powder
  • ½ tsp fresh pepper
  • Salt to taste

For huevos rancheros:

  • 4 eggs
  • 4 corn tortillas
  • 1 cup refried beans (canned or homemade)
  • Avocado, sour cream, salsa optional for sides,  Queso fresco or your favorite cheese on top

To roast jalapenos: 
Place jalapenos right on the open medium flame turning with tongs as it is charred (black and wrinkly).  This should take about 5 minutes.  You can immediately place into a closed paper bag or put an upside down bowl on top to steam while preparing other ingredients.  Or, just scrape off the char with a knife.  If you don’t like too much heat, scrape out seeds (and wear gloves).

To make the salsa ranchera:
Saute onion in oil over medium heat for about 5 minutes or until tender and almost translucent.  Add in garlic and cook for one more minute. Put tomatoes, onions, garlic, jalapeno peppers and cilantro into blender or food processor and blend until it reaches your desired thickness.  If you want it chunky, roughly chop jalapeno, cilantro, before adding them, then just pulse a few times.  Once all ingredients are combined, throw the salsa into the pan and add spices.  Cook for a few minutes to let flavors meld.  Simmer while cooking eggs.

Assembly:
There are lots of different ways you can assemble, but here’s my favorite.  I spread the refried beans on the tortilla, place the egg on top of the beans, then pour salsa ranchera all over the egg (leaving the yolk visible, if possible), then sprinkle a little queso fresco (or whatever cheese you have on hand) on top.