Sunday, January 30, 2011

Weekend Brunch: Breakfast Casserole

It has been 3 years since I lived in Daly City, CA. Daly City appealed to me for two reasons:
  1. I could see the ocean from my place
  2. It was cheap
What I discovered the day I moved into my apartment next to the beach, is that the town is blanketed in fog 350 days of the year. Daly City fog means not being able to see your neighbors house across the street. Lets just say I'm much happier living north of San Francisco and out of the fog.

It has also been 3 years since I made this breakfast casserole. The source of this recipe has been forgotten as well, I want to say I found it in a Cooking Light magazine, but after multiple Google searches nothing came up. The recipe is very forgiving and can handle a variety of breakfast meats and/or vegetables.

Serves 2
4 eggs
1/4 c milk
salt & pepper
1/2 bell pepper diced
1/4 c diced ham
1/8 c red onion diced
1 c frozen hashed browns
1/4 c asparagus diced (optional)

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Grease a small baking dish with butter (8" pie dish or your smallest rectangular dish, a skillet will work as well).

Chop up the bell peppers, ham, onion and asparagus and toss into the baking dish.

Measure out 1 cup of hashed browns and mix with the vegetables.
Whisk the egg, milk, salt and pepper together. Pour egg mixture over the vegetables, ham and hashed browns.
Sprinkle cheddar cheese over the top of the casserole and bake for 45 minutes or until egg is cooked all the way through.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Taco Tueday: Asian Beef Tacos

Time to shake it up, time for a little taco fusion. For the last year every food blog has been writing about these Korean or Asian tacos but I haven't had the opportunity to find them in a food cart setting. After eating these tacos, I'm ready to hunt down some taco trucks to compare.

1 tbs garlic
2 tbs soy sauce
3 tbs fish sauce
4 tbs brown sugar
1 tsp sesame oil
dash of pepper
1/2 lb flank steak
1/2 c daikon, julienned
1/2 c carrots, julienned
1/4 c warm water
1/4 c rice wine vinegar
5 tbs sugar
1 tsp salt
1/3 c cucumber sliced thin
1/8 c cilantro
6-8 corn tortillas

Marinate the steak about an hour or more before cooking.

In a bowl whisk together the garlic, soy sauce, fish sauce, brown sugar, sesame oil and pepper. Place steak in the marinade, cover and set aside for an hour or more.

Prep and pickle the daikon and carrots.

In a bowl whisk the warm water, rice wine vinegar, sugar and salt. Toss in the daikon and carrots and set aside.
In a hot oiled skillet, cook the steak for about 3 minutes on each side. Once the steak is cooked, let it sit for about 5 minutes before slicing thinly against the grain.
Take out the pickled daikon and carrots and drain the vinegar mixture. To prepare the tacos take warm corn tortillas and pile on the thinly sliced steak. Toss some of the pickled vegetables on the top and garnish with sliced cucumbers and cilantro.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Weekend Brunch: Sage Biscuit Breakfast Sandwiches

Me name is Breakfast Sandwich Monster. Sometimes me think what is love, and then me think love is what last breakfast sandwich is for. Me give up the last breakfast sandwich for you.
-Quote Adapted from Cookie Monster 

Sage Biscuit Breakfast Sandwiches 
Serves 4 sandwiches which can easily be eaten by two people, feel free to double the recipe if need be.

1 c flour
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/4 tsp sugar
1 tbs dried sage
3/4 c heavy cream
2 tbs melted butter
2 eggs
2 slices of bacon
2 slices of cheddar cheese
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. In a bowl add the flour.
Then add the baking powder and baking soda.

Next add some salt and sugar.
And finally add the sage. With a fork mix the dry ingredients together.
Pour the cream into the flour mixture.
Mix all of the ingredients together.
Flour your hands and separate the dough into 4 balls. Flatten them into 1/2 inch thick and 3 inch discs and place on a baking sheet. Brush the melted butter over the biscuit dough and then bake for 15-20 minutes.
In the meantime, cook up your bacon and fry your egg to your liking. If you like a runny egg, wait until you have the biscuits out of the oven.
Once the biscuits are out of the oven, take a knife and slice the biscuits open.To ensemble your sandwich, place the egg on the bottom side of the biscuit, layer on the cheese next and then finally place your bacon on top. Cover the bacon with the top of the biscuit. Umm-num-num-num-num.

Friday, January 21, 2011

Focaccia bread- Uhhhmazing

Whenever good bread is in my house, it creates a centrifugal force pulling me and my husband in for more. We orbit around the bread tearing off pieces and snacking until (within about 2-3 hours) the bread is gone.

I came across this focaccia bread recipe three weeks ago and it has a strong centrifugal force. I've made it 3 times already and I think I'm addicted

Easy, Homemade Focaccia Bread
Recipe adapted from Nobil Pig


1-3/4 c warm water
1 package active dry yeast
1 tbs sugar
5 c all purpose flour, plus additional for kneading
1 tbs kosher salt, plus more for sprinkling
1 c extra-virgin olive oil, divided

Measure 1 3/4 c warm water (I just got warm water from the sink faucet) and empty one packet of dry yeast and sugar into the water. Set aside in a warm (not hot, not cool) spot for 15 minutes.
Now yeast is tricky, it needs the right environment to work. After the 15 minutes you should see the yeast mixture foaming.

If there is no foam, wait longer. After waiting longer and having no foam, you did something wrong so try again. 
 In a large mixing bowl, place the flour, salt 1/2 c of olive oil and yeast mixture. If you have a mixer set it up and knead with the dough attachment for about 5-6 minutes. If you don't have a mixer, roll up your sleeves and start mixing! If the dough is really sticky, sprinkle in some flour.

Cover the dough with saran wrap or a towl and set aside in a draft free spot in the kitchen. Within 1-2 hours the dough should double in size.
Once the dough has risen, take a large cookie sheet or jelly roll pan and pour the remaining 1/2 cup of olive oil. Place the dough into the pan and knead the dough so that it covers the entire surface of the pan. Flip the dough over so both sides are coated with olive oil. When kneading make sure and leave lots of dimples in the dough with your fingers. This will help create the texture of the focaccia bread.Set aside for another hour to rise.

Turn the oven onto 425 degrees. Put the focaccia dough into the oven for 20 minutes
Take the bread out of the oven once it is golden on top, instantly sprinkle sea salt all over the top of the focaccia bread. I have a rosemary salt that I use and it tastes divine.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Taco Tuesday: Fish Tacos

Over the MLK weekend I spent lots of time working out recipes I've been putting off for the last month. Unfortunately I caught a baking bug. I made bread that didn't rise. I made a blueberry coffeecake with a streusel topping that was just too floury. I tried making a mint and lavender syrup for my seltzer water, the combination wasn't that hot. By the time it came around to Taco Tuesday, I was so happy to be cooking rather than baking. How was your MLK weekend?

Fish Tacos

2 fillets of cod (about 1/2 lb)
2 tbs olive oil
1/2 tsp paprika
1/4 tsp chili powder
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp cumin
1/8 tsp salt
2 c shredded cabbage
1 tbs vinegar
1/4 c salsa
6-10 corn tortillas
1 lime
cilantro to garnish

Combine paprika, chili powder, garlic powder, cumin and salt in a bowl.
Pat cod dry and sprinkle spices all over cod.
Put your skillet on medium high heat and pour some oil into the skillet. Cook the fish 3 minutes on each side, (my cod was about 3/4 inch thick) Cook longer for a thicker piece of cod. When done, the fish should flake apart with a fork easily.
My cod was a little overcooked!
 Quickly toss the cabbage around with the vinegar and salt. I used rice wine vinegar and it still tasted great. To put together your tacos start with a layer of cabbage slaw, a piece of the fish, a drizzle of salsa and a sprinkle of cilantro. Maybe you want to add hot sauce and don't forget the cerveza.


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