So last month I participated in an egg challenge. This wound up opening the door to the world of eggs, a world that I wasn’t very familiar with prior to the International Incident which in a way was the point of the exercise. I wound up going thru my cook books and checking out all of the egg recipes I had skipped over, yet I kept going back to baked eggs. So I decided to keep experimenting with them and seeing what other delicious taste combinations I could find. Once upon a Thanksgiving ago I found that mashed potatoes and eggs go together really well in the form on a delicious mashed potato omelett. I decided to take that concept and add to it, while changing it from a cheesy omelett to the power house that is a baked egg. Some googling let me know that this was actually very similar to a dish known as Irish Colcannon minus the meat…and with some veggie changes. So in tribute to that ancient recipe I am dubbing these Irish Eggs.
1 lb potatoes, diced
1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup milk
1 lb spinach, thawed and chopped
1 onion, chopped
2 oz cheese, shredded
1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the potatoes. Cook until the potatoes are tender, then drain and mash. Add seasoning to taste along with butter and milk.
2. Preheat oven to 375.
4. Spread the mashed potatoes on the botton of an 9×9 pan. Add the spinach over top. Create four wells in the spinach/mashed potatoes add crack the eggs into the wells. Top with cheese
5. Bake for 15minutes, or until eggs are fully cooked. Enjoy!
Another simple dish that is perfect for a filling breakfast or a light dinner. I am now officially a fan of baked eggs and I look forward to figuring how many other ways I can prepare them. I am also going to attempt to do a poached egg as well at some point…maybe…
Confession: I have never eaten or cooked with Lavender before. I once saw a Lavender Scone at a bakery outside of Pittsburgh but didn’t order it, instead I went for the classic Maple Scone. So when I saw that lavender was the “secret ingredient” for the International Incident Party I was nervous. I thought about skipping this month or feigning a last minute illness and then realized that this was a good thing. I normally stick to recipes that are vegetarian version of the comfort foods I grew up with, or the vegetarian versions of meals I see at restaurants. This was a chance to branch out and do something different. So I decided to go all out and not only use a new ingredient but try a new cooking technique. When I was growing up occasionally my dad would go all out and become a short-order chef for the morning. Mostly we stuck to simple egg orders but every now and then he would make crepes for us. Delicious yummy crepes with random stuff inside of them or just a basic crepe with some cream cheese and maple syrup. So I found an old school recipe for crepes and started experimenting. After finding the right batter I decided it needed more than just a normal filling, it needed a special lavender infused filling. So I got out the food processor and had some fun with that as well. In the end only one crepe survived…something about over greasing and then under-greasing the pan…but just needed one crepe for the picture with the right filling and that’s what we got.
Ingredients for Crepe:
1/2 cup milk
1/3 cup all purpose flour
2 tsp lavender, crushed
1 pinch salt
1 tsp vegetable oil
I apologize in advance for the lack of picture with this post. I kept meaning to do it, but some how everytime I went to the table to take a picture I wound up just eating a cookie. Which resulted in a lack of cookies for the photo. I will make this recipe again, probably in the next week or so but I wanted to go ahead and make it available. I also promise to have some more savory recipes up later this week, lately I have been a baking machine!
These cookies are inspired by the AMAZING Cranberry Bliss Bars available at Starbucks. They are by far my favorite food item and I remember looking forward to those rare nights when one would be left over and thus available for mark-out. Alas, this was a rare event so more often then not I had to buy my pastry like everyone else. I originally wanted to make the bars but after finding the “official” recipe and the official calorie count I realized nothing good would come from that. So I decided to experiment in the kitchen and see what I could do. This is one of those recipes were the dough is not the tastiest but everything works out in the end.
1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 cup unsalted margarine, softened
1 oz cream cheese, softened
1/2 cup white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup all natural applesauce
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 cup dried cranberries
1 cup white chocolate chips
1. Preheat oven to 375
2. Mix the flour and baking soda together in a small bowl. Set aside.
3. Cream the margarine, cream cheese, and sugar together in a large mixing bowl. Add the applesauce and vanilla extract, then mix well. Mix in the cranberries and white chocolate chips.
4. Drop the cookies onto a non-stick pan, with spacing, and bake for 10minutes.
This recipe should result in around 40 delicious bites of yumminess.
In a saucepan, warm the broth and cider over medium heat, bringing to a low simmer.
- Warm 1 tablespoons olive oil in a large saucepan over medium-high heat. Stir in the apples, and cook until just soft, about 3 minutes. Remove apples, drain, and set aside.
- Add 1 tablespoon olive oil to skillet, and stir in the garlic and onion. Cook 3 minutes. Add rice, stirring to coat with oil, about 2 minutes. When the rice has taken on a pale, golden color, pour in the sherry, stirring constantly until fully absorbed. Add 1/2 cup broth cider mixture to the rice, and stir until the broth is absorbed. Continue adding broth 1/2 cup at a time, stirring continuously, until the liquid is absorbed and the rice is al dente, about 20 minutes.
- Remove from heat, and stir in the apples and gouda. Season with salt and pepper to taste.
If you don’t have sherry feel free to use another type of dry wine. When it comes to apples I prefer a mixture of sweet and tart, as well as a mixture of colors. The main thing with the apples is cooking them to the point where the flesh is soft but the skin still has a slight crunch to it, almost al dente if you will.
For those of you that want to baconize this recipe, just switch out half of the apples and start cooking the bacon right before you add the apples. For those of you that want the bacon taste without the bacon, some stores do sell a bacon smoked cheese…have I mentioned before how bacon is taking over the world???