Eggs, a breakfast foundation!

I love eggs, I keep a carton of hard boiled and raw eggs in the fridge all the time, ready to go. I use them for breakfast, lunch, snacks, sandwiches, they are incredibly diverse, packed with protein, and an easy item to learn to cook. Eggs were probably one of the first things that I ever learned to cook. It’s really remarkable how many different ways eggs can be prepared. So lets  look at some of the most popular breakfast preparations of eggs. Starting with scrambled eggs of course!

So many truly great, award winning, and celebrity chefs claim to have the perfect scrambled egg recipe. Buzz feed recently did a comparison of top chef scrambled egg recipes, and compared the various techniques and recipes. I believe that scarambled eggs are prepared based on personal tastes. I don’t like “wet” eggs, when it comes to a scrambled egg in my world I want them cooked through, but not tough and over done. It’s a delicate balance, and a technique that requires your full attention.

scrambled eggs

Here is what you need.

2 Large eggs

2-3 Tbsp milk or half and half

salt and pepper to taste

1 Tbsp butter

In a bowl combine eggs, milk, salt and pepper. Preheat a medium pan on med-high heat. Add butter tot he hot pan when melted add the egg mixture. Allow to cook for a few moments, using a spatula push the eggs from one side of the pan to the other turning over slightly to cook through. Once cooked through, remove from the heat and place in serving bowl or plate up. Serve hot!

Another popular technique for cooking eggs is to fry them. There are a lot of different levels of done-ness with this technique that is again according to ones personal tastes, or the application of the eggs once done. These may include sunny side up, over easy, over medium, or over hard. When I was younger I struggled to know what to call the eggs that I actually wanted. I was in my 20’s before realizing I wanted an over medium egg, but was always ordering an over easy egg because all I knew was that I didn’t want a sunny side up egg! So what is the difference. A sunny side up egg is cooked on one side the egg is cracked into the pan and cooked until the white  is opaque and the edge of the yolk begins to lighten up slightly. It is then removed from the pan and served as is, the top demonstrates a bright sunny yellow yolk, over easy, over medium, and over done take the fried egg technique to another level by turning the egg over in the pan, cooking both sides. over easy is cooked just until the white is opaque, with a runny yolk.  Over medium is cooked long enough to set the yolk up slightly so that it is creamy but not dry. And, you guessed it an over hard egg is cooked until the yolk is completely set up, and slightly dry. Once cooked they can be salted and peppered to taste.

fried eggs

Poaching eggs is another great breakfast application. This is a technique that for many, me included can be very intimidating.  It involves cooking the egg in water, creating a creamy egg with a warm gooey center perfect for eggs benedict or to top toast. The ingredients are as simple as it gets, eggs, salt and pepper. The key to this process is the cooking technique.  crack egg into a small bowl and set aside. Boil water add 2 Tbsp of white vinegar (this will help keep the egg white from separating) stir the water creating a swirling motion in one direction. Poor the egg into the center of the swirling water and continue to slowly stir until the egg white is opaque. remove egg with a fork, and drain on paper towel.

poached eggs

 

Time for a new Cooking Series!

I so enjoyed the Fall cooking series a little while ago and having a specific topic really got my wheels turning on new recipes, as wells as forced me into my kitchen where I was starting to reclaim my “happy place”.  I have lost a little momentum and so now have decided to challenge myself again with a new cooking series that will focus on the most important meal of the day. Breakfast!

easy-breakfast-crepe-1565637945

I love breakfast foods, there is a lot of diversity in the meals available as well as baking and cooking techniques that combine to make delicious, healthy and nutritious food for my family. I plan to discuss some basics like different ways of preparing eggs, as well as some inventive new recipes that you”re family will love, and you can use day to day as well as for guests or special occasions!

breakfast

I’d love to open up some dialog with you all about what you most enjoy for breakfast, did you have a fancy dish at a restaurant or bed and breakfast that you’d like to see replicated? What is your go to breakfast recipe for special occasions? and Do you eat breakfast at anytime of day? I can’t wait to explore all of the facets of this important meal with all of you! Follow along for more recipes and tips! Thank you for joining me!

eggs

Beef and Cheese Tostada’s

I have been seriously neglecting my blog this year. I apologize to my regular followers who are looking for new content. I have a ton of stuff saved up to share and tonight I’m going to start with a fresh and tasty dinner recipe for your family to enjoy!

Tostada’s remind me of a flat taco. They use the tortilla toasted so that it’s crispy and can act like a plate for all of the yummy toppings. This is a quick and easy to prepare meal that your family will be sure to love. Here’s what you need, Enjoy!

**Preheat oven to 450°F

1lb lean ground beef

1Tbsp southwest seasoning

1 tsp. chili powder

2 Tbsp. beef bouillon

1 small green pepper

1 small yellow onion

1 Roma tomato

2 Tbsp. chopped cilantro

1 Lime

2 Tbsp. sour cream

1 tsp. Siracha hot sauce

8- small flour tortillas

1c. shredded Cheddar Jack cheese

salt, pepper, olive oil, and water

Dice the tomato, chopped cilantro if needed. Thinly slice half of the onion and finely chop the remaining half. Thinly slice the pepper, and quarter the lime. In a small bowl combine the tomato, onion, and cilantro. Squeeze the juice from half of the lime over the top and season with salt and pepper to taste. Set aside.

In a small bowl combine the Siracha hot sauce and sour cream, stir in a small amount of water until the mixture is thin and can be drizzled like a dressing.

In a medium sauce pan add a small amount of olive oil, beef, southwest seasoning, and chili powder. Stir until combined and meat is broken apart. Once cooked through add the thinly sliced onion and green pepper and cook until veggies are tender. Add beef bouillon and a 1/4 c of water stir over medium heat until thickened and set aside.

Prick the tortilla’s with a fork and drizzle with olive oil, place in a single layer on a baking sheet and place in the oven for 3-4 minutes until brown and crispy, remove from the oven, turn the tortilla’s over and place back in the oven to toast the other side.

Once tortilla’s are toasted you can assemble you tostada. Layer tortilla, cheese, beef mixture and then top with homemade salsa and sour cream dressing. If desired you can add another squeeze of lime on top just before serving! Enjoy!!

Tour the Town!

During a recent hangout with my BFF Amber, we decided we wanted to inspire something a little different for 2019. We were talking about some of the Instagram pages that really strike us, how the imagery makes us want to do more, and travel more, and eat more, and figure out internet fame! We cracked up over how popular some pages are and for such simple content. This discussion became a rabbit hole of ideas and before we new what was happening we were starting something pretty awesome!

We have decided to take 2019 and discover everything we can about our own hometown, and any other place that we might travel too or stumble upon along the way! And whilst exploring we’ll share these adventures with all of you here, along with pictorial reviews on Instagram! You can follow us @Tour_the_Town

Amber and I met 7 years ago when she and her husband moved back to Michigan from South Carolina. Her husband and I went to high school together, he and my husband grew up playing baseball together, and we had one other rather sad connection…. Her son was a cancer survivor and my late son was at the time a newly diagnosed cancer patient. Not something you expect to bond over but there was an empathy there that I needed, and 7 years later I don’t know what I would do without her!

We live a block away from each other in a small Michigan town that we both grew up in. We have thrown parties, held fundraisers, gone to community and school events, and even vacationed together! Our families often feel like one big family and we love that! So now that we are starting Tour the Town we hope you’ll have fun with us, laugh with us, and get to know us a little better.

Since we are so close to our little district of Vandercook Lake we plan to start there! There are a couple of awesome little restaurants right around the corner from us, and we plan to highlight these locations each week, or as often as our schedules allow! This week we visit Klavon’s pizzeria and pub in Vandercook Lake! This locally owned restaurant and sports bar has quite a story to share and we can’t wait to get to it! More soon, until then enjoy some memories from Amber and I. Thanks for following along!

Kitchen Renovation

If you follow me on Instagram or Facebook then you already know that we are in the process of renovating our kitchen.  Although quite  project we are doing all of the renovations on our own DIY style. Thankfully my husband is a licensed contractor and does amazing work.

So here’s the story… we moved into our home 13 years ago. When we moved in the kitchen was original to when the house was built in the 50’s.  We made cosmetic upgrades to get us by but the original cabinetry (handmade plywood) and chipped Formica counters stayed.

As much as I would like to go crazy and design and build my dream kitchen, this is not our forever home, and so we’re sticking to a $5000 budget. That’s $5000 to do EVERYTHING! Cabinets, Counter tops, Floors, Backsplash, Lighting… EVERYTHING! It’s kind of daunting to fit everything in that budget!

So Here is the plan…

BEFORE

Kitchen Before

We have already removed the upper cabinets, and the trim you see at the ceiling has now also been removed. We are keeping some of our appliances and since they are stainless steel this works out perfectly. We will invest in a new Microwave hood vent for over the stove.

We are making the risky decision not to re-install upper cabinets. This is a cost savings, and I feel like it’s kind of a trendy design choice. I also had a mini heart attack at the thought of losing all of that storage, but I think we came up with a way to resolve that and stay on budget… We’re incorporating some open shelving near the sink for glass ware and a few other dishes that we use a lot.

We are installing a stock cream colored cabinet from Lowe’s from the Caspian Collection… They look like this…

caspian-lower-cabinet.jpg

I like the fact that they aren’t super white… I was really afraid to go too stark white as this is a LARGE room. Once lowers are installed we found a stock black Formica counter top, stainless steel sink, beautiful stone back splash, and vinyl plank flooring. We’re installing a new soffit with can lighting, and pendants over the counter top. The finished project should look very similar to this… although this is a crude cut and paste rendering that I did myself lol!!

Kitchen After Rendering

I’m ready to see the finished project already, but we have a long way to go… it will be interesting to see how close we get to my conceptualized drawings! Wish us luck!!

Let me know your thoughts on our idea to eliminate uppers! I’m still nervous! Thanks for reading!

 

Labor Day at the Last Minute

This past weekend was Labor Day weekend and although I had to work on Saturday, we still managed to fit in a brief get away.  My husband and I love to travel and frequently do quick weekend trips to some of our favorite hangouts. We seem to gravitate toward the water here in Michigan (maybe because there’s water everywhere lol) but this time we decided to try a new… or newer destination. We had both been here before but not in a very long time. I think I was in high school!! We visited none other that Frankenmuth MI.

Welkommen

Frankenmuth is a couple hours north east of us, and seemed like a good fit for a quick stop vacation. We however didn’t take into account that this was after all a holiday weekend in a tourist town. We didn’t make reservations ahead and upon arriving found that all of the hotels were fully booked except the Frankemuth Motel. Now, I’m not usually a fan of Motel’s but this was a surprise, a little dated but clean, spacious, and the staff was very friendly. It was a quick walk from there to the Main st. action.

Frankenmuth_Motel.jpg

Once checked in we traveled over to main street to see what was happening there are a tons of little shops and specialty stores.  We walked and walked, stopped by the Historical Museum, listened to the Glockenspiel, walked the historic covered bridge, and took in the sites…Did I mention that this place is literally coated in tons and tons and tons of gorgeous flowers!!

Frankenmuthflowers1

They had flowers everywhere lining the streets, hanging from the light poles, across all the building fronts, it was beautiful! In the evening we visited “the Tavern” a local hangout bar, it was OK. traveled from there to Tiffany’s there we had a couple of drinks and appetizers, and shared a dessert. It was a nice quiet laid back evening.

The next day we had lunch at Zehnder’s. They are famous for the chicken dinner served family style with all the delicious sides you can eat. We opted out of an all you can eat menu and order individual meals.

Zehnders-0a32c127

Now I usually order a pretty healthy entree’ I’m not overly picky but I don’t like a lot of heavy food especially early in the day.  So I thought I’ll play it safe and order a hot chicken sandwich… This was not an ordinary chicken  sandwich…

What I thought I was getting… Chicken on sandwich bread or bun with lettuce, tomato, etc… something like this…

Chicken sandwhich

What I actually got was a monotone plate covered in gravy! It was like drowning in gravy lol. Everything gravy…gravy…gravy…gravy…

Zehnders chick sand

Although not what I was expecting I ate it and it was delicious and I was super sleepy the rest of the day lol.

We let our food settle after that on the Bavarian Belle Riverboat tour, this is a nice relaxing tour of the river and the surrounding hotels and establishments there is an entertaining tour guide telling you about the boat, the covered bridge, and many of the area attractions that can be viewed from the river.

bavarian-belle-riverboat

We ended our quick visit to Frankenmuth with a trip to Bronner’s Christmas Wonderland, a huge holiday store with everything you could possibly think of that is holiday related. I remember it as a kid and it’s still that awesome.

Bronner's

So all in all a nice trip away and something a little different that our usual get away. If you’ve never visited Frankenmuth I highly recommend a visit. It has a lot of beautiful sites, shopping, attractions, and a little old world German/ Bavarian flare. Thanks for reading!

 

Fantastic Fall Cookies for the WIN!

So after polling my various social media outlets, email subscribers, and getting some feedback right here on WordPress.com, it looks like this fall I will be hosting a blog series on Fabulous Fall Cookies!

Fall cookies

I’ve already started to compile a list of favorites, and can’t wait to get in the kitchen and get things started! I will include a couple of sugar free options as well, so stay tuned! I promise there will be a little something for every taste… Happy Fall Baking Y’all!