Thursday, March 17, 2011

Green Eggs and Ham {recipe} Two Ways- Accidentally!

Happy St. Patrick’s Day! 
Well, actually, that should most likely read:
“Happy Belated St. Patrick’s Day!”
by the time you are reading it.  But really folks, you can make this dish any day of the year it’s so yummy.
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So here’s a fun recipe for St. Paddy’s day or any day you feel like “breakfast” for dinner. Let me tell you, this actually tastes very dinner-esque, don’t let the eggs fool you.  I don’t think I’d like the sauce for breakfast…but maybe an 11:00 am brunch?
I found a recipe for “Meatless Eggs in a Basket” here and just adapted it a tad.
Ingredients:
8 large eggs {click here to read about the eggs I buy and why}
1/2 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon garlic powder {I omitted, & didn’t miss it}
2 teaspoons kosher salt, divided
6 slices day-old firm white bread {I used sliced sourdough}
4 ounces chopped ham {I like Trader Joe’s nitrite-free}
8 cups chopped spinach
A small handful of basil leaves {I omitted, & didn’t miss it}
3 cloves garlic
1/3 cup walnuts {the original calls for pinenuts…which would be equally tasty I’m sure}
1 lemon
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
A few dashes Tabasco sauce {for my hubby}
1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

Directions:
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
For the eggs: Spray a large cup muffin tin with non-stick cooking spray. {I crammed it all into a regular size muffin tin but wish I had the large cup kind!}  In a pie pan or other shallow bowl, whisk 2 of the eggs, milk, garlic powder and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Dip each bread slice in egg mixture for about 10 seconds on each side {fun to do this with kids}. Place soaked bread slices in muffin tins, forming a “basket,” with corners of bread sticking up out of muffin tin slightly. Sprinkle 1/6 of your ham into the bread bowl. Crack one egg into each bowl. Sprinkle with a little salt {or not….but I like to taste salt directly on my egg when I bite into it.}
This is “assembly line” cooking in our house.  I set up “stations” on my new island {yay!} and each child takes a station: they LOVE this!  So one kid dipped the bread and counted to 10, I put it in the muffin tin, the next kid adds the ham and finally one cracks the egg on top.
IMG_4165I had extra ham, so I sprinkled more on top.

Bake for 15 minutes for eggs that will have slightly soft yolks, or bake longer as desired to make egg yolks firm….which was about 20 minutes for me {I like the yolks cooked completely} 

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For the sauce: Place spinach in a glass bowl, cover with plastic wrap a paper towel and then microwave for about 90 seconds, or until wilted.  {I love this step as it makes the spinach much less “tart” in the sauce.} Remove 1 teaspoon zest from lemon and 2 tablespoons juice from lemon. {I used the whole lemon for each step.} Place juice and zest and all remaining ingredients in blender (for a smooth sauce) or food processor (for a more rustic sauce).….I used my best friend the Cuisinart Mini Chopper. {Also a fun step for kids} Blend until smooth.
Remove eggs from muffin tin and place on plates {or bowls for the kids}. 
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I love the little knife that comes with the mini chopper for things like this.  It’s tiny enough to maneuver in small spaces and won’t scratch your pans.
Spoon a heaping spoonful of sauce on top and there you have one version of
Dr. Seuss’s Green Eggs and Ham!
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Alright folks, now we’ve come to the part of the show where this dish/recipe turns into
Green Eggs and Ham 2 Ways- Accidentally! 
This was supposed to be dinner.  But since it was the first time I have ever made it {which is the case with dinner about half the time} I didn’t know how much it would serve.  Turns out, DH could have easily eaten 3 bowls, me 2, my almost seven-year-old son 2 or 3 and each of my three year olds: 1.  So in that case I could have made the recipe 150% had I known ahead of time! {Seriously though, do you find it to be the case that whenever you make extra anticipating people will want seconds, they never do? Well, that happens to me all the time!} So there we were: DH, my growing boy and myself, still hungry…so I hopped up and quickly made a 2nd round of green eggs and ham that was equally yummy and far less work!!
I just browned up some more ham in a little butter on the stove. I added a little chopped shallot {half a shallot}. Then I whisked together 5 eggs, 1/4ish cup milk, a half teaspoon of baking powder {just learned this trick: baking powder makes your eggs fluffier! Fun!} and some salt….and added it to the pan.  When the eggs were cooked, I mixed in about 1/2 cup of the spinach sauce mixture {this was our vegetable for the night, had to go heavy on it!} and served!
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Both dishes were a hit in our house!
Not a crumb was left on anyone’s plate…but some wore a green St. Paddy’s mustache!
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At least nobody got pinched!
Oh and one other side note: you can also make this dish in a frying pan instead of muffin tin.  Simply put a lot of butter in the pan, dip the bread as directed, but cut a circle out of the center of it.  Place it into the frying pan and then crack and egg and pour into the hole in the center of the bread.  Cook for a couple minutes, then flip until the egg is cooked how you like it…..or flip the bread BEFORE you add the egg and only cook the egg on one side: sunny side up {read: runny}. But the bowls are more fun!




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1 comment:

  1. mavis E. ButterfieldMarch 17, 2011 at 11:37 PM

    i just got home from getting my irish ON at The Pub. THIS recipe is making me hunGray! i'm thinking about combining all ingredients listed here and roasting it off on the George Forman Grill. right? Green Eggs Panini???? is it even possible? stay tuned. . .

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