Posted in Blurbs, tips & tricks

How to Turn Anything Into Breakfast

It’s impossible to know how many times I’ve heard the phrase “put an egg on it!” in my lifetime. Just typing it triggers a montage in my brain of my dad, grandmother, and several of my aunts all enthusiastically proclaiming their easy post-holiday breakfast policy. It also makes me wish there were an egg version of this gif, which I came across a few years ago and has since become infamous in my family. It never gets old and is so funny because it’s too close to the truth to be anything else:

 

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Turkey and stuffing, enchiladas, soup, rice, salad, any kind of bread, you name it and I’ve probably seen someone put an egg on it. Or two.

And why not? Eggs are one of the most versatile foods around. Eggs contain a little bit of almost every nutrient we need, including an array of vitamins, omega-3, and 7 grams of protein, in an average of just 77 calories. Besides which, the variety of ways in which they can be prepared range from solid hard-boiled eggs to light-as-air meringue so, naturally, they can be found in every course from breakfast to dessert. They are what huevos rancheros and Italian (or French or Swiss) buttercream have in common.

There have been countless studies over decades as to their cholesterol content and the possibility of it increasing blood cholesterol, thus possibly increasing the risk for heart disease, but it seems there is no hard answer and science has gone back and forth over how much is too much. There are also studies that have concluded that food cholesterol has little, if any, impact on blood cholesterol. (I’m not going to link to them because there are a ton, and a simple google search is all you’ll need to do if you want more information or even just to see how many different opinions there are.)

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The point seems to be, like everything else, to enjoy them in moderation. Each of our bodies may respond differently to any number of dietary choices that we make on a daily basis, my philosophy is to do the best I can with the information I have and pay attention to how my body responds.

That being said, if I haven’t made it clear, I’m a big fan of eggs. There have been a few times in my life where my stomach was so sensitive there wasn’t much I could eat, but eggs have always remained a constant. There aren’t very many foods that fit into the niche they hold, being at once nutritious and versatile while light on both the waistline and wallet. I have at least two every day. Sometimes for breakfast, sometimes for lunch. I buy an eighteen pack every week, whether we’ve finished the previous one or not, because I know I don’t have to worry about them spoiling. My current favorite way to have them is simply over-medium with a piece of buttered toast (and often a hefty splash of the jalapeno sauce I mentioned last week) but I’m certainly not above putting a couple on last night’s dinner for round two.

So next time you need an excuse to have your favorite dinner, but you don’t want to wait until it’s appropriate (because apparently, some people have rules like that), just remember the simple trick that magically turns anything into breakfast food:

Put an egg on it!

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Posted in Blurbs, Series, tips & tricks

Spice Cabinet Deep Dive: Bay Leaves

I sort of piloted this series back in April with my post on Herbes de Provence. Anyone who knows me well could tell you easily that I love well-seasoned food. I’ve learned a lot about spices, herbs, and the seasoning styles and techniques associated with them from having people in my life that are knowledgeable and willing to share that knowledge (and also watching a lot of cooking shows and reading cookbooks just to read them) – so much so that I think I took it for granted a little bit and kind of thought most people had similar or complementary knowledge. But when I left the food industry and started spending more time with non-foodies I realized how completely and utterly wrong that was. I found myself in the minority when it came to talking about how to season one thing or the other and “tips and tricks” that were commonplace to me made me seem like a supernatural spice goddess to them.

That’s not really a mantle I could wear, even if I wanted to. My knowledge is cursory when compared to most real chefs, and I’m willing to bet that some of their knowledge is cursory when compared to my Dad’s. He’s not a chef but he loves to cook and he loves to eat – and in the words of our patron saint Julia Child “…one learns by doing.”
Thus, in order to advance both sides, I’ve decided to combine my thirst for knowledge with my knack for communication and bring you what I do know whilst learning more myself. Continue reading “Spice Cabinet Deep Dive: Bay Leaves”

Posted in Pantry Raid, tips & tricks

Pantry Raid: Spice Cabinet

Hey all! 🙂

Since changing the format of KS Weekly, it seems redundant to me to post my menus ahead of time as I have been on Mondays, so I decided to post a feature or recipe instead in it’s place. This also gives me the option to tweak my menu as I please without feeling like I have to go back and edit the posted version.

This week, we have a Pantry Raid. Where I take everything out of my cabinet and show you what I’ve got and why. Below you’ll find an inventory of my spice cabinet. I’ve had this post queued up for a little while now so a few of my mains have changed appearance, I’ve switched to the big Sam’s Club sizes of onion, garlic, and Italian seasoning, and I’m trying a new brand of Herbes de Provence, for instance – but it’s the same stuff so didn’t really warrant a re-shoot.

I will say that I try not to buy more than I’ll use in a year, even if it’s a little cheaper. Of course, sometimes buying more can’t be helped, but I’d really rather have everything fresher. Even dried herbs and spices will lose their flavor over time, especially in an open container. Continue reading “Pantry Raid: Spice Cabinet”

Posted in Blurbs, tips & tricks

WTF is Herbes de Provence?

The short answer? A shortcut. Poultry, pork, fish, stew, potatoes, rice… Fragrant and delicious, it’s one of my secret weapons.

The long answer:

Herbes de Provence is a mixture of dried herbs typical of the Provence region of southeast France. Formerly a descriptive term, commercial blends started to be sold under this name in the 1970’s.

It’s become something of a generic term, but typically contains some combination of thyme, fennel, rosemary, summer savory, oregano, bay leaf, tarragon, mint, and marjoram. My current bottle contains lavender as well (a little much for my taste, to be honest) and, in my research, I found that orange zest is also sometimes included!

As much as I love my spices, I so much prefer my kitchen to stay organized that I have become quite the minimalist. Especially by contrast to my Dad – who offers me some type of kitchen appliance that he “just couldn’t pass up” almost every time I see him. (Not a jab – I promise. We do actually use the moka every day.)

Anyway, I’m a big fan of blends (and I love Mrs. Dash), but herbes de Provence is probably at the top of the list of most versatile for me. I could certainly make my own, but I like that I don’t have to have all of the things that go into it separately taking up their own space in my cabinet.

Try adding a bit to baked sweet potato fries, sprinkle over fish before baking, or toss a pinch into your next pot of soup. It also makes a great addition to any dry rub or salad dressing. Add a bit to some olive oil with a pinch of salt and serve alongside sliced french bread for dipping.

P.s. I’ll update with a picture after my grocery trip tomorrow!

Posted in meal planning, tips & tricks

A Different Approach + Some Tipz & Tricks

Micro Meal Planning, a new variant on the meal-planning horizon, may be a more efficient way for you if you’re only planning for one or two people, don’t really care to cook every night, or change your mind often about what you’re feeling for dinner. For those who still find themselves hesitant, it’s a good way to dip your toe into the proverbial meal planning pool as it employs the same principals of choosing a meal and doing the grocery thing – but on a much smaller scale.
So if you’re curious, but it’s a major possibility that you’ll change your mind and decide planning is not the way for you, Micro Meal Planning makes it less likely that you find yourself with a kitchen full of food you’re probably not going to eat before it’s too late. Continue reading “A Different Approach + Some Tipz & Tricks”

From thekitchn.com

A few great articles from one of my favorite sites.

10 Tips for Meal Planning for One

Excellent advice, regardless of whether or not you’re single – sometimes you’re just cooking for you!

The Best Way to Use a Weekend for Meal Planning Success

I employed a strategy almost identical to this during the period of time when a long commute made each day 12 hours – This is perfectly written, a quick and helpful read.

5 Strategies for Picking Recipes for a Week of Meal Planning

More incredibly helpful tips. #5 is my favorite, because otherwise what’s the point?