Category Archives: Sides

Denver Omelette Cups

I love breakfast, don’t you? It’s one of the first things I ever taught myself to make back in middle school (if not earlier), and it was the eggs that I started to master.  I still lean towards making eggs when I make breakfast for myself or for my family. Weekends are the best time for me to teach my kids how to make things like sausage egg mcmuffins or homemade egg mcmuffins, but recently I was sitting on some awesome leftover Nueske’s ham steak, and some fresh green bell peppers from my garden. This is when the light went off, to come up with a new twist on the Denver omelette.  I decided to create little Denver omelette cups, very similar to what I did in the past when making my taco cups.

Denver Omelette Cups

These Denver omelette cups were so fun to make, and super delicious. Did I mention they were awesome the following morning?

Ingredients:

  • 6 whole eggs
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 cup green bell pepper, diced
  • 1 large shallot, minced
  • 1 cup of thick cut, cooked ham, diced
  • 3/4 cup of shredded cheddar cheese
  • 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  • muffin tin

Crack the eggs in a large bowl. Add the salt and pepper to the eggs, and beat the eggs until they are slightly frothy.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Lightly butter about 8 of your muffin tins.

How to make Denver Omelette Cups

Ladle the eggs into 8 of the tins, about 90% to the top.

Add in the shallots, ham, and bell peppers into each of the cups. Gently stir each cup. Top each cup with shredded cheese.

Bake in the oven for about 20 minutes, or until the eggs are set and the cheese is nice and melted.

Use a knife and run it along the outer edge of each cup and gently lift the Denver omelette cup out of the muffin tin.

Plate and serve.

These things were awesome. They were everything you could ever want in a Denver omelette but in great little bite size muffins. The great thing is that you can get as creative as you want with these which I am a big fan of. These were great as leftovers as well and perfect for a quick bite before heading out the door for work. Hope you enjoy!

 

Smoked Eggs

Lately a friend of mine posted a picture on Facebook of his daily cooking. Within his smoker he had a pork roll, sausages, and eggs. Eggs! I never, ever thought of smoking eggs before and I was totally intrigued. I immediately prompted him on Facebook, and sure enough (as he is also into cooking) he swore by these and said they were incredible.  Now I normally do not bust out the smoker on a weekday, but I decided to try these smoked eggs later that week.

Smoked Eggs

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • Eggs, as many as you want to smoke
  • Cherry wood, soaked in water for at least 2 hours
  • Smoker

How easy is that?

Heat your coals and get your smoker ready.  Once the coals are ready, add the cherry wood, or your favorite wood for that matter. Lay the eggs on the grill grate and cover.

How to smoke eggs

You will want to smoke the eggs for about 2 hours at 230 degrees, or so. Once the eggs are smoked, remove them from the smoker, and let them cool.

There are a few crazy thing about these eggs. One, they are totally gorgeous from the smoke; two they actually shrink in size. It’s almost as though when you buy a bag of chips and you open them and you only see about 50% of the bag filled. The shell is not that easy to peel, but it comes off just fine, and then you get that great smoke ring as you normally would.

The texture is a bit different than a normal hard boiled egg. It’s firmer, and when biting into it, it almost reminded me of a over cooked scallop with bacon notes. These smoked eggs are definitely worth trying, and both of my coworkers agreed. I have another recipe coming up in the upcoming weeks with another twist. If you are looking for something different to try when smoking, then add a few eggs. Thanks to my buddy for the inspiration.

Fire Roasted Habanero Salsa

I was asked some time ago what was my favorite chile pepper to use when cooking. At first I was thinking it was the jalapeno as it is more on the mild side and can be tolerated by many, however as I continued to think about it, I thought it was the serrano, or heck even the habanero. There are so many that I do love, including the smoked jalapenos, and as importantly the Thai bird chile pepper. But the habanero is one of those awesome chile peppers that is just loaded with awesome flavor, and heat for that matter. In the past I have only used the habanero in making Jamaican jerk rubs, and even a habanero hot sauce that was completely addicting (and hot). With that in mind, I decided to take that idea of using the habanero and turn it into a fire roasted habanero salsa, plus I wanted to use a handful of tomatoes from my garden. Trust me, this salsa rocks.

Fire Roasted Habanero Salsa

Let’s get started.

Ingredients:

  • 4 large tomatoes
  • 1 medium onion
  • 3 whole habanero chilies
  • 1 cup of cilantro
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 lime, juiced
  • 1/2 cup of water

The cool thing about making this salsa is that you cook the vegetables and chilies directly on the coals. The Mexicans have been doing this forever, and it is typically referred to as cooking al carbon. The cooking method instills this awesome flavor that you typically will not get by cooking on your stove top or broiler. Trust me, try this. Folks have even been known to cook meat directly on the hot ashes as well!

Heat your coals until they are all nice and gray. Lay the onion, tomatoes, and habaneros directly onto the coals. Note that the onion will take longer to cook than that of the tomatoes and habaneros. Cook everything until they are completely black and super charred. Once fully charred place them in a bowl and let them cool to the touch.

How to make Fire Roasted Habanero Salsa

Once they are cooled, use the back of your pairing knife and remove the outer skin from each of the items. Don’t worry if you get a bit of ash or char along with the items. You can decide if you want to keep the seeds in tact on the habaneros. I kept two whole, and removed the seeds from the third.

Once the charred skin is removed, add the tomatoes, habaneros, and onion to a food processor. Toss in the garlic, cilantro, salt, and lime juice. Pulse until you have a nice consistency, then start slowly pouring in the water until you have your desired thickness. Taste and adjust with any salt.

The result is just the perfect amount of heat. It does have a kick to it, but the flavor is just out of this world. This stuff is great on just about anything. I was adding it to my omelettes in the morning, using it as a standard chip dip after work, and drizzled on chimichangas. I hope you enjoy and let me know what you think when you decide to cook al carbon!

Renaissance Faire Style Mushrooms

Not too far from Milwaukee, there is a annual summer-time event called the Bristol Renaissance Faire. It’s a good time to be had by all. It’s been years since I have last went, but I recall it rather clearly. I remember the people dressed in costume, the shops, the activities, and their food. So my coworkers and I got to talking as the faire recently ended, and one coworker kept describing their mushrooms and how awesome they were. I was set out to make those, as I knew I would be putting them on pretty much anything, and that was the truth. These mushrooms are perfect in texture, and have a great garlic and onion flavor.

Renaissance Faire Style Mushrooms

Let’s get started.

  • 32 ounces of button and cremini mushrooms, cleaned, stems trimmed
  • 2 cups beef stock
  • 2 whole onions, roughly chopped
  • 3 tbsp unsalted butter
  • 10 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1 1/2 tbsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp cracked black pepper
  • 1/2 cup dry white wine
  • 4 sprigs thyme

This is really super simple, and one that goes pretty much the majority of the day.

Add the mushrooms to a large pot. Cover with water and the beef stock. Add a plate to the top, one that will fit, to make sure the mushrooms get a nice soaking until you are ready to add the remaining ingredients.

Next, heat a large skillet on medium heat.  Add the butter, and let it melt. Toss in the onions, garlic, and cracked black pepper. Give it a nice toss. Let this cook on medium heat, stirring along the way, just until the onions begin to soften, about 5-7 minutes.

Remove the plate from the mushrooms, and add the onion mixture to the pot. Add in the salt, and white wine.  Stir. Cover, and bring to a simmer, and cook for about 8 hours. Yes, 8 hours. About 6 hours in, remove the cover, bring the heat to medium, and add the sprigs of thyme.

How to make Renaissance Faire Style Mushrooms

The broth will reduce a bit, and that’s what you want, but you will still have plenty of broth. It’s yummy. I could just eat that by itself.

When you are ready to serve, ladle these in a bowl, or serve them as I did on top of mashed potatoes. Did I say that might be my favorite new combination? Mushrooms and mashed potatoes?

These mushrooms are addicting. They are super tender and just have an awesome taste. I mean you can’t go wrong with garlic, onion, butter, and wine.  It makes quiet a bit, so reduce how many ounces of mushrooms you want to make.

When I was cooking these, I thought that you could probably get away with these by making them in a slow cooker.  I hope you enjoy!