Frittata with Bacon and Mint

Frittata with Bacon and MintSunday morning is one morning that I really get to relax and spend some quality time with my wife and kids. It is a special morning where we typically make some pretty darn good comfort breakfast, laugh, and plan out the rest of the day before everyone heads back to school and work.  Sunday mornings are special to me. After making the kids french toast this morning, I took a few minutes to investigate my pantry. Backtracking my thoughts, I recall my coworker, Ryan, talking about a frittata that he makes. After a simple review, I thought to myself, that I kind of make frittatas for my wife, with potatos, eggs, and onion, however it comes out like an omellete style, of which, my wife really enjoys. This morning I was taking it to the frittata level, and one that is truly packed with some interesting flavors.

I started by getting a few simple ingredients together, and as I recently purchased Nueske’s bacon (after a conversation about pork with another one of my coworkers), I really wanted to use some fresh mint from my garden, and hence the bacon and mint frittata. Lets get started.

Ingredients:

  • 6 slices of your favorite bacon, cooked until crisp, set to drain any fat, then chopped
  • 1 large onion, chopped
  • 2 cups of shredded hashbrowns
  • 5 eggs
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1/2 cup of fresh, chopped mint
  • oil

Begin by cooking your bacon. Once the bacon is cooked to a nice crisp, roughly 10 minutes, set aside on some paper towel and let cool. With the bacon fat, add your onions and potatoes and cook until they are nice and crisp. During this time, chop the bacon, whisk the eggs, adding a pinch of salt and pepper to them, and add the mint. Mix well. Once the potato and onion mixture is nice and crisp, add them to the egg mixture and mix another time, making sure to combine all of the ingredients.

Preheat your broiler to 500 degrees. In the meantime, clean out the pan that you were cooking the onion and potato mixture in, and then reheat it on medium-high heat, and add about a tablespoon on cooking oil. Add your egg mixture to the pan, and cook for 4-7 minutes, making sure you do not mess it as it will create a nice bottom crust. Remove the pan from the stove and place it in the broiler, allowing to finish the top crust for another two minutes.

With your heating gloves on, remove the pan from the broiler, and slip it out from the pan, and onto a cutting board where you will cut into into pie shape pieces. Serve warm. Trust me on this one, the mint flavor really packs a great flavor with the onion and bacon. This one will be served throughout the year, that’s for sure.

Baklava

BaklavaGrowing up, there was always a desert that really caught my attention, and that was baklava. I forgot when that time of year was when the baklava would come around, most likely a local festival in Milwaukee, but I recall that time of year, and I would attempt to always get a triangle of the delicious and flaky baklava.

As I was making a lot of dishes yesterday, I thought that I would make a desert, not so much for myself, but to try something new for the kids. Looking around my kitchen, I noticed a large bag of salted pistachios on the counter. I am not sure what hit me, but I instantly thought of baklava. Now I believe that baklava is typically made with crushed walnuts, however I thought the pistachio would add a nice salty hit to the sweetness of the butter and syrup.

The dish is really quick to make and will keep you coming back for more, which can be dangerous if you are looking to shed a few pounds, fortunately I have some control.

Ingredients:
1 box of filo dough, thawed
2 sticks of unsalted butter, melted
2 cups of crushed pistachios
Cinnamon, to sprinkle

Syrup
2 cups of sugar
2 cups of water

Start by greasing a 9×13 deep baking pan. Taking each layer of filo dough, lightly butter each layer, and sprinkle a bit of the pistachio nuts and cinnamon on each layer. Continue this process until all of the dough is used. Once layered, cut the dough into triangles or squares before cooking. Preheat your oven to 350 degrees and cook for 45 minutes, until golden brown. While the baklava is cooking in the oven, add the sugar and water to a pot and bring to a boil. Once boiling, reduce the heat and cook for nearly 20 minutes. This will reduce down and make a wonderful syrup. Once the baklava is done cooking, drizzle the syrup all over the baklava. This is the hard part; you have to let it cool! Once cooled, dig in. Trust me on this one, not only is it super easy to make, but it is so flaky and delicious, you will want more!

Fruit Smoothie

Fruit SmoothieLately I have been thinking about my daily intake of food and drink. Shockingly enough, I am doing ok on my portions of meat, and vegetables, however I have noticed that I was passing up fruit. Sure, I have use fruit such as mango in my corn and mango salsa, however that is not as nearly enough as I would like.  So that got me thinking… what could I do to improve my intake of fruit? Simple. Have a fruit smoothie a day.

The thing I really like about the smoothie is that you can put pretty much whatever fruit you want in it. My visit to the store this week, led me to the fact that blueberries were on sale, as well as strawberries. We grow fresh raspberries in the back so there is no problem there. Now, I simply add in the rest. Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 1 ripe banana
  • 1/2 cup of cleaned strawberries
  • 1/2 cup of raspberries
  • 1/2 cup of blueberries
  • 1 cup of milk
  • 1/2 cup of plain non-fat yogurt
  • pinch of sugar
  • 5 ice cubes

Add these ingredients to a blender and if you have an option for smoothie, use it, otherwise, blend until, well you know, smooth. After drinking one of these, you will feel full of energy and ready to continue the day. Question to you is, how do you make your smoothie?

Saturday Morning Breakfast – Chorizo and Eggs (Chorizo con Huevos)

Chorizo and eggsThis is one of those easy morning recipes that I truly love. I first encountered huevos con chorizo while living in Dallas, Texas, and it seemed to be a staple at the time, not only because it tasted awesome, but it was also extremely inexpensive.

I really never knew what chorizo was, as growing up, it was never really served in our kitchen. As I learned more about chorizo (there are many types ranging from Portugal, Mexico, and the Philippines), the type I have stuck with for breakfast is the mexican type of chorizo. You can find these seasoned pork-filled tubes in your local grocery store, however I find that the best chorizo is found at your local latino supermercado. The chorizo does have a bit of a spice, however the eggs really provide a great balance. Let’s get started.

Prep time: 2 minutes
Serves: 1

Ingredients:

  • 5 tablespoons chorizo
  • 2 eggs
  • fresh corn tortillas (optional)

Chorizo and eggsBring a small to medium non-stick pan to a medium to high heat. Add your chorizo and begin to break this apart with your spatula. Let this cook for a few minutes before adding your eggs. Crack your eggs on top of the partially cooked chorizo and let them rest for nearly a minute. With your spatula, begin stirring the egg and chorizo, combining the two. You will be amazed about how this comes together, and it does this quite quickly. Continue to fold over the mixture until the eggs are cooked through.

Serve with warm, fresh tortillas, or use this mixture with quesadillas, tacos, or burritos. Enjoy.