Monday, May 17, 2010

Egg & Cheese English Muffin - Take that McD's!

One of may favorite foodie blogs posted this recipe not too long ago: ~ I was intruiged and HAD to try it out.
Let me tell you .. Mickie D's is crap. Real Food rocks. And if you think it takes too long you're thinking wrong. That's just the facts folks. Here's our stab at Egg McMuffins.

~The eggs, fresh out of the oven, tops still poofy~

This recipe is insanely simple, hardly worthy of writing down recipe style. But here it goes anyway.

Egg McMuffins:

4 - 5 eggs
Splash of milk & melted butter

*Scramble these together in your bowl & then carefully pour them into a greased muffin tray*

Package of English Muffins. ~ Be healthy, use whole wheat or whole grain. Remember - the white the bread, the sooner you'll be dead.

*Turn on your oven to 350. You'll want to cook your eggs for 15 - 20 mins. You can also go ahead and slice the muffins, spread them out on a cookie sheet & toast them in the oven with the eggs. The muffins will only need about 10 minutes in the oven, so get your eggs in there first, then slice the muffins, and you should be good time wise.*

~Out of the oven, on the muffin, just needing some cheese~

*Putting it all together is pretty straightforward. Top it with some cheese. We have taken to adding some mustard on the muffin, but do what you wish here.*

Nick's photos are great, so I definitely recommend you check out his recipe for this. He will also give you enough info on WHY you should make these.
We did make a change to his recipe though - we scrambled the eggs. It's an extra step but one we preferred. The first batch, made following his recipe & just cracking the eggs into the muffin pan resulted in bites of pure egg white or pure yolk. And it seemed to make the whole thing hit heavy on your stomach. Feel free to find the way that is right for you though. We also used slices of cheese on ours rather than shredded - no reason there, just seemed easier for us.

I make these 6 at a time, which is really easy since there are 6 English Muffins in a package. Justin has taken them to work the next day for breakfast .. which is the ONLY time I've known Justin to actually eat something for breakfast at work. That should tell ya something. These bad boys are GOOD.
If you want them for your work week, make them up over the weekend. Wrap & freeze. Take to work & reheat. If you have a toaster you can heat them up in there, if not you can zap 'em in the microwave, they just will be a little chewier. But you'll have a homemade breakfast that you can eat at your desk. You'll have the pride of knowing you didn't succumb to spending money at McDonald's. If you're eating local eggs, you'll know you're supporting local chickens (thank you!). Add all those up and you have a tasty-good way to start your day.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Homemade Ginger Ale

Temperatures around here have already hit 90 degrees, which is kinda insane (in my opinion) when you've barely entered May. When it gets that hot we all head for something to cool us down, and so I wanted to share this recipe with you.

I don't know about you, but too often I hear a LOT of what NOT to eat or drink, which leaves me feeling like there is little left that is "ok" to eat or drink. We all know sodas are bad. We now here how fruit juices are bad as well, likely because most of them only vaguely resemble true fruit juice anymore. Water is ok, but there's a lot of yabbering about filtered v. tap. Milk is good. Well golly then, I'm left with two options. Not fun. So, I was very happy to find recipes for drinks when browsing through my new favorite cookbook, Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon.

~Homemade Ginger Ale, sitting in between a bottle of homebrew and a jug of homemade cherry ginger lemonade. Can you see the ginger at the bottom of the jug?~

The recipe for Ginger Ale can be found on page 586 of her book. It makes 2 quarts and is very yummy! It has the nice bite of ginger that is too often lacking in drinks that claim to be made of ginger. If you're not used to real ginger (I wasn't) it might take a little getting used to, but it is worth it. Here is how I made it.

Homemade Ginger Ale - from Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon

3/4 cup ginger, peeled & finely chopped or grated
1/2 cup fresh lime juice
1/4- 1/2 cup organic sugar
2 teaspoons sea salt
2 quarts water

~ I heated some of the water with the sugar to make a simple syrup before adding it to the jar. I also threw the ginger in and let it go for a bit in the pot with the simple syrup. Since I was using a glass jar, I made sure to run some hot water through it first to ensure it would break.
I added the lime juice & salt directly to the jar and then poured the simple syrup (slightly cooled down) into the jar & then filled it on up with water.
~ According to the book, once you've filled up the jar you
"stir well & cover tightly. Leave at room temperature for 2 - 3 days before transferring to the refrigerator. This will keep several months well chilled.
To serve, strain into a glass. Ginger ale may be mixed with carbonated water and it is best sipped warm rather than gulped down cold."

I'll admit, when I first drank this it was with ice and it was slightly gulped down. The ginger ale had not yet made it to the fridge and the kitchen was deathly hot. It was still good though. Likely next time I won't add the ice and I will sip on it rather than glug it.
Ginger is also really good for aiding the digestion process, so this isn't a bad drink to have with your dinner. It also helps calm stomachs, so there is another bonus to it.
Was it maybe a little more expensive than buying a 2 liter of ginger ale soda? Yes. Is it worth it? Without a doubt or any hesitance, yes.
Bring on Summer.