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breakfast for dinner

Crispy Brown Rice Cakes with Avocado and Egg

Crispy Brown Rice Cakes with Avocado and Egg

April showers bring May flowers. And rainy rides to work.

Thank god for rain pants, otherwise I would’ve been one soaking mess at the office today. I hate driving, and I hate the majority of Philly’s public transit systems. So unless there’s some kind of lightning zombie apocalypse, you can generally catch me on my bike if I’ve got places to be.

If this sounds like you – invest in some rain pants. I’ve been borrowing a friend’s this week, and they are a savior. You could say they’re kind of like meals like this – good to keep around for when you need to be somewhere quick but still want to treat yourself well.

Okay, so maybe that rain pant / crispy brown rice cake comparison is a bit of a stretch. But both have served me well this past week. Hence, here I am, laying out a thank you to each on my blog today. So be it. I’ll blame the weather on this rambling blog post, if need be.

Let’s cut to the chase. There is certainly no debate around whether or not a ripe avocado is a savior in all lunchtime situations. It is, it is, it is. And if you’ve got brown rice cooked and stored in your fridge, you can use it to turn a breakfast-like combo into an interesting meal like this in no time.

Not dissimilar to avocado toast, this simply swaps the bread for crispy, wholesome rice used as a base and spiced as you desire. Feel free to play around with the toppings, or keep it simple like this. Following April showers, serve with an obligatory side of flowers.

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Quick Spring Eats

Spring so far has been more about cleaning than cooking. It’s been all about salad days — Mac DeMarco included. Morning runs — some in shorts and a t-shirt!(!!)  And quick, unplanned dinners. It’s been about leisurely minutes spent outside, explorations with friends, and cleaning my psyche. (I hope you didn’t think by cleaning, I meant my apartment. Currently, my laundry’s flooding my room, and likely covering up the dust that’s swimming down beneath it. Hey – that could be considered laundering the floor though, right?)

Sometimes, when spring calls, you’ve just got to shift your priorities a bit and soak up all that sun that bright sky is shining down. However, that doesn’t mean turning your diet to crap. Short on time certainly doesn’t mean pizza night should be every night.

Let's eat

For Lunch/Dinner: When you can have a few quick and easy recipes up your back sleeve, your spring cleaning will feel so much more CLEAN. As I said, I’ve been doing a lot of salad. Raw greens are my go-to, largely because their heartiness can take on a lot, and because they’re easy to make a meal out of. Add grains. Add beans. Maybe add herbs or cheese. Add nuts. Add other veggies. Definitely add avocado. Create a salad that feels like much more than a salad, so you can feel both healthy and excited. The best part? When you start with a base of raw kale or collards, you can make a huge bowl on Sunday night, and have something already made you can munch on all week. Throw this Tahini Dressing on it, and you’ll be golden.

Chia Overnight Oats

For Breakfast: If you’re like me, and you’ve been using the spring weather to get up early and bike/run/read/whatever — or if you’re not, perhaps consider doing so; it feels great  — it’s ideal to have a breakfast that’s both energizing and quick. I HATE rushing around in the morning. It starts my day off on a stressed out note. But when going for a run in the morning, I can’t say I love waking up extra, extra early either. My solution? Have breakfast prepared the night before.

Here’s where overnight oats comes in. I’ve definitely featured a few of these recipes before on my blog. I’m still eating it on the regular, and am still loving how satisfying it is. Plus, it’s made in advance so you literally need just one minute in the morning to pull it out of the fridge, top it with nuts, and drizzle maple syrup on top — leaving all your other morning minutes to relax and fuel up. See below for the recipe to my latest chia seed rendition.

Curried Ketchup Cabbage and Potato Stir-Fry

For Lunch/Dinner: Another go-to is breakfast-for-dinner. Pack your breakfast with veggies, and this becomes an incredibly quick health-for-your-buck kind of meal. My breakfast of choice this past week? Eggs a la Curried Ketchup Potato Cabbage Stir-Fry.

There’s a beer garden in Philly that turns simple snacks into memorable menu items solely by the curried ketchup they offer on the condiments table. I’m pretty sure all they do is add a little curry powder to regular store-bought ketchup – which is what I do with my potato/cabbage breakfast-for-dinners.

There’s no set recipe here. Dice 1 large onion and 1 large potato, and saute in some olive oil until the onion is caramelized. Meanwhile, slice up about 1/2 head cabbage. Add 1/4-1/3 cup of ketchup to the pan, along with a palmful of curry powder. Stir, and then add the cabbage. Add a splash or two of apple cider vinegar, and cook over medium heat. If cabbage begins to stick, add 1/3 cup of water, and cover pan with a lid. Finish cooking until cabbage is tender, 8-10 minutes in total, adding a few red chili pepper flakes if you want it spicier. Top with a pan-fried egg, and serve.

Don’t worry. I’ll be back to cooking up slightly more elaborate meals pretty soon once the novelty of spring wears off. And if that doesn’t happen, then the abundance of early season veggies on their way is bound to get me back in the kitchen. I’m getting antsy just thinking about it.

What’s your favorite spring meal? Or your favorite quick meal to make?

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Eggs Simmered in Summer Tomato Sauce

Eggs Simmered in Tomato Sauce

Every time pasta’s in the picture, I’m asking my noodles to move over and make a little more room for the tomatoes in the bowl. I like to keep things saucy, and my linguine on its toes.

That being said, there’s rarely a ton of marinara leftover. However, when summer comes, I make my own, and I make sure that there’s plenty to spare. I chop all the tomatoes I have, onions, garlic, and sometimes a few other veggies, like eggplant, peppers, zucchini and summer squash. Then I add basil, thyme, oregano, extra virgin olive oil, salt and pepper. It all gets paired with a slow simmer that yields a sauce that could easily be eaten by the spoon.

The result is also often a gallon full of red in and out of the pot on my stove. There will most definitely be room for leftovers, and recipes like this too.

Eggs Simmered in Summer Tomato Sauce

When you’ve got leftover sauce and no noodles to claim it, cracking a few eggs in it is a great way to go. It creates a light meal that goes perfectly with a side of crusty toast. I recommend going with a chunky sauce, one that almost errs more on the side of ratatouille than marinara. The extra veggies will add a nice platform for the eggs. If you’ve got a hot pepper, throw it in too. A spicy sauce with Parmesan topped eggs may have you saying goodbye to pasta all together.

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Summer Veggie Breakfast Tacos

Summer Veggie Breakfast Tacos

No, I’m not sick of tomato sandwiches yet. However, I did want to start whipping up some new recipes again. With so much fresh produce in my fridge, it was bound to happen. Creativity strikes when variety is abundant, happily attained through the perks of working at a farmer’s market.

I wasn’t too sure how I’d feel about crawling out of bed before 7 a.m. every Saturday morning to sell vegetables. Bags of summer squash and ears of corn later, the foodie in me has decided the weekly weekend gig is totally worth it. Saturday mornings spent working bring Sunday morning breakfasts. Delicious ones at that.

This past Sunday, that meant these breakfast tacos, filled with buttery yellow squash, vine-ripened tomatoes and sweet corn. Worth it, don’t you agree?

Summer Squash

I love summer because the days the season brings along are rarely ever dull. There are always new ingredients to to be experimented with for wrapping into tacos. There are always new swimming excursions to be found. There is always outdoor fun to be had. My favorite kind, for sure.

Lately I’ve been doing plenty of pool jumping, lots of jacket-less night time bike riding, and occasional ice cream eating. Summer has been treating me well. I wish it’d never leave. Perhaps, one day, my future career path will lead me to an endless warm locale. That certainly wouldn’t be a bad job perk either.

Anyway, I leave you with these Summer Veggie Breakfast Tacos. Although these make a perfect Sunday, late morning meal, they’d also serve as breakfast-for-dinner that can be pulled together quickly any night of the week. Perhaps make them now, and then repeat once the weekend rolls around.

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Baked Egg in Avocado

I hate to bring you guys a non-seasonal post right in the middle of a prime growing season, but you’ve got to serve something substantial alongside all of those garden veggies, right? Plates of vegetables are glorious, but working hard in this heat requires some solid pairings to go with them.

When I caught wind of this idea, I knew it was just the thing I wanted to couple with the summer greens currently flourishing outside. These avocado bowls are adorable. They are rather simple too, allowing them to shine in their appearance as well as with the other toppings you select to spruce them up.

I chose to go with a Mexican theme because when I think of avocado, the maracas start shaking and guacamole automatically comes to mind. Season to taste, and feel free to add any other ingredients that inspire you, like lime juice or paprika. Think of it as a breakfast taco wrapped up in an avocado. That’s a tortilla shell substitute worthy of a summer fiesta.

Baked Egg in Avocado

Ingredients

  • -Avocado
  • -Egg
  • -Chili Powder
  • -Cilantro
  • -Salsa
  • -Shredded cheese
  • -Salt and pepper

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425 F. Place a cast iron pan in oven and heat.
  2. Cut avocado in half. Depending upon how big the pit is in your avocado, you may want to scoop a little bit of the flesh out of the middle and set aside. Line area where the pit was removed with cilantro and then crack egg into the middle. Sprinkle with chili powder, salt, and pepper.
  3. Remove cast iron pan from oven and place egg inside. Bake about 10 minutes, or until egg reaches desired consistency. When egg looks about done, sprinkle with cheese and cook until melted. Serve alongside salsa, fresh cilantro, and hot sauce, if desired.
http://foodfitnessfreshair.com/2012/08/12/baked-egg-in-avocado/