I like a toast soldier as much as the next guy, but this is a great way to get more flavour and vitamins if you favour an eggy breakfast.
I started with a sliced onion, half a bell pepper, diced, and a chopped hot pepper in a nonstick pan. A regular pan will work also; just add water in small increments to keep it all from sticking. After it got going a bit on medium heat, I added about a cup of chopped kale.
Once all this was softening, I chopped and added two ripe tomatoes – one red, one yellow. Once it came to full heat, I cracked in four eggs, reduced the heat to medium-low, covered the pan and cooked undisturbed, save occasional checks until the eggs were done.
Quick, easy, and tasty. To veganize I might substitute cooked kidney beans or tempeh for the eggs.
We had a busy day yesterday, cleaning, organizing, walking, shopping and visiting the Gardiner Museum’s amazing porcelain collection. The best way to top off a day like that is to make a delicious but low-effort dinner together.
Here’s what we did:
Preheat oven to 400F.
In a casserole dish, place two pork chops. Ours came from our friend/neighbour/butcher, Mark. Over top, pour 1/2 c (125ml dry sherry). Thinly slice an onion and separate into rings, scattering on top of the chops. Add half a dozen capers and four roughly-chopped olives. Sprinkle with dry mustard and mace (or nutmeg, if you’re stuck). Put the lid on.
Next the potatoes. Slice 4 or 5, thinly. You will have two servings left over for tomorrow. In a glass cake pan or pie plate coated with olive oil cooking spray, arrange half the potato slices. Sprinkle with 2 t or 10ml of flour. Crack on some pepper and grate on a small amount (1 oz/30 g) strong aged cheddar. We used an amazing cave-aged one from Wookey Hole.
Layer the rest of the potato on, pour over 1/2 c or 125ml of 1% milk. Add another cracking of pepper and another ounce or so of cheese. Cover with foil, not letting foil touch the cheese. Full disclosure: another casserole would work well here, only we don’t have one!
Put both dishes in the oven for half an hour. Drink wine and chat.
Then remove the lid or foil and cook for another 15 minutes. Prep the Brussels sprouts or do what we did – use frozen. When the 15 minutes are nearly up, bring the sprouts just to the boil, covered, on top of the stove. Turn off the heat and let stand while you dish up the rest. Sprouts will be crisp-tender.
Have a lovely meal and enjoy each other’s company. Live happily ever after.
Today we’re headed out to the plot to do some compost maintenance and give the gardens a general walk-around before some visitors arrive this afternoon. Our fuel for the endeavour consists of local harvest foods, some of our own, and some from others nearby.
We cooked a melange of veggies – potato, onion, celery, peppers, mushrooms in a tiny spoonful of bacon fat (vegetarians, canola oil is fine, or a nice herbed olive oil if you have one). When they were nearly tender enough for our taste, we broke in some fresh eggs, lidded the lot and let them poach until just softly done. This is our tasty result:
As the weather cools and many of our garden crops have been harvested, it can be easy to turn our thoughts to root vegetables. Well we should! But it isn’t too late for salad yet, even without cold frames. Yesterday we harvested delicious beets and Swiss chard, an we still have a healthy crop of mizuna. All of this was turned into today’s lunch salad, along with some chopped apple, walnuts, and feta cheese, held together with this vinaigrette (for two):
15ml/1T each of red wine vinegar, tarragon Dijon, and olive oil, whisked together. If you don’t have tarragon Dijon, use regular, and add some chopped herbs of your choice.
Tasty – although we admit if the chill stays in the air, we will turn our thoughts to soup!
The evenings are starting to cool off and the days are getting shorter. In just a few weeks I fear we will be faced with the f word…fall.
But for now there is plenty of tremendous produce in the garden to make salad, and we grilled these juicy burgers. Putting a dent in the middle (in tribute to our daughter’s man-friend, we call it “Paulito style”) keeps the patties from shrinking. They didn’t need much to top them off…tomatoes, pickles, a little grainy mustard and some relish.
For the salad dressing:
15ml /1T sesame oil
30ml/2T orange juice
Whisk until smooth.
The weather in Ontario this week hardly constitutes the kind of weather for “cold weather food”. But it’s a small sacrifice for something so delicious. We had two lovely local lamb shanks in the freezer. While those were browning in a Dutch oven on top of the stove, we chopped a carrot, a hot pepper, a leek, and a stalk of celery. When the shanks were browned we turned the oven to 350F. Then we added the veg and sautéed until they were softened a bit. After deglazing with a little beer, we added a stalk of thyme (the leaves will fall off and the stem can be fished out before serving). Other flavours included a few raisins, 3 chopped dried apricots, 6 pitted, chopped black olives, some oregano, chili powder, and ground cloves.
We poured over a pint of diced tomatoes (or half a large can), covered it, and put in the oven for 20 minutes. Then we turned the shanks, let it go for another 20 minutes. For the last 10 minutes we took the lid off, and in the meantime, made mashed potatoes. The lamb was fall-off-the-bone delicious. Happy Groundhog Day!