Bacon, lettuce and tomato quesadilla

Here is a fun way to serve a classic sandwich with a new Tex-Mex twist.  I use sun-dried tomatoes, either quick microwave crispy bacon or traditional bacon, and shredded Fontina cheese.  I also like to use Romaine lettuce.

Gather the ingredients. Heat the tortilla shells in the oven for five minutes and then add the ingredients and return to the oven to bake on 350 degrees until the cheese is nicely melted.  That usually takes around 8 minutes.  Serve with sour cream and enjoy.

Bagel breakfast casserole

Cold weather is a great time to serve a hot breakfast to family and friends. Everyone just wants to gather around and drink a hot beverage while taking their time on a weekend morning.  Here is a great recipe that is a twist on the standard breakfast egg casserole.  I tried it with plain bagels, but sesame or other flavored bagels would also be worth a try. This dish will easily serve 6-8 people, especially if served with fruit or muffins.

Gather these ingredients:  4 toasted and chopped plain bagels, 6 eggs (I used 3 eggs and 3/4 cup Egg Beaters), 2 cups half-half or milk, 4 ounces shredded Monterey Jack cheese, 4 slices bacon chopped, and 4 green onions.

Place the bagels in a large 2 1/2 quart baking dish. In a bowl, mix eggs, milk, cheese, bacon, green onion, salt and pepper to taste.  Pour over the bagels pressing down to cover all the surfaces.  Cover and place in the refrigerator for at least one hour or overnight.

    

When ready to bake, preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Uncover the dish and bake for 50 minutes or until puffed, browned and set.  Allow to cool a bit before serving.  Garnish with parsley flakes or chopped green onion.

 

sunshine baked eggs

A great way to make eggs has always been to bake them in the oven.  Especially when preparing for a large breakfast, this technique has to be the easiest.  The eggs can be made in advance while other side dishes are finishing up or being plated.  Sunshine baked eggs are similar to eggs in a hole, but are baked instead of prepared on the stove-top.  Again, this allows for better and easier planning during the entire breakfast preparation schedule.

Baked eggs are perfect served with fruit, toast, muffins, breakfast meats or breakfast potatoes.  Often a very attractive presentation, the eggs hold their place on the plate without looking messy or less than neat.  To make sunshine baked eggs, begin by pre-heating the oven to 350 degrees.  Place 2-3 tablespoons of margarine on a baking sheet and melt in the oven for a couple of minutes.

While the margarine is melting, use a round cookie cutter to remove a circle of each slice of ciabatta bread to be baked.  Butter each piece of bread and the circles and when the sheet pan is ready, place the bread and circles on the pan to bake.  Bake for 10 minutes.

Remove the pan from the oven and flip the toast. Crack eggs into the holes of the slices of bread.  Top with pepper, parsley flakes or herbs of choice, and shredded Parmesan cheese if desired.   Bake for 9-10 more minutes until the egg whites are done.

Serve with other breakfast selections.  This is a fun way to serve baked eggs that your guests should truly enjoy.

Baked eggs for breakfast

Easter breakfast is typically a great meal to enjoy with family.  If you have many people to serve, and want to try something a bit different from the typical breakfast casserole–why not try baked eggs?

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This is such an easy recipe and can even be adapted to personal preferences.  Each person could have their own taste profile.  The eggs bake in cocottes, which is a French term for single individual baking dish, most often with two handles.  Each of these cast iron dishes have lids.  Many different companies make them.  It would also be easy to substitute ramekins with foil over the tops.  I place my dishes on a smaller sheet pan to easily transfer them in and out of the oven.  If you have many people to serve, all the eggs are done at one time and no one has to wait.  The cocottes can even be assembled in advance and just put into the oven when it is time to prepare the breakfast.

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To make the baked eggs: Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  Decide if chopped bacon, ham or sausage would like to be used.  Crumble those cooked items into the bottom of the dish.  Add 1 tablespoon cream. Next break two eggs into each dish.  Season with salt, pepper, parsley flakes to taste.  Add if desired, 1-2 tablespoons of a cheese.  I chose cheddar, but Swiss or white cheddar could also be used.  Cover.

Bake for 15 minutes and then remove the cover and bake at least 5 more minutes until eggs are perfectly done.  Sprinkle with parsley flakes, green onion, or chives for garnish.

Serve with shredded hash browns, fruit, toast, or muffins.

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Easy Bacon Garlic rolls

From the Taste of the South magazine, published in November 2014, comes this fabulous recipe for easy bacon garlic rolls.  These rolls are made with frozen pizza dough and are delicious.  They can be used for lunches or served with a bowl of soup for dinner. Take out the frozen pizza dough early in the day, and these rolls will come together very quickly.  They can be refrigerated for lunches for the week.

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To make the rolls, gather these ingredients:  16 ounces of pizza dough, 4 tablespoons margarine or butter, 1 cup crumbled cooked bacon, 1 1/2 cups shredded fontina or white cheddar cheese, 1/4 cup parsley flakes, minced garlic to taste, kosher salt, and ground black pepper.

Prepare a round cake pan with vegetable spray.  Roll out the dough.  Spread the dough with margarine, leaving a border around the edge.  In a bowl, mix 3/4 cup of bacon, 1 cup cheese, 2 tablespoons parsley, garlic, salt and pepper.

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Sprinkle over the butter on the dough.  Roll the dough into a log.  Place seam side down and cut into 10 slices.  Place in the baking pan.  Cover and allow to rise, which will take less than one hour.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Uncover the rolls and bake for 18 minutes.  Top with the remaining bacon and cheese.  Bake another 5 minutes.  Cool and top with parsley to garnish.

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open faced tomato sandwiches

all of my summer tomatoes have ripened and for the past few weeks, i have been making a variety of recipes to take advantage of their delicious homegrown taste. this past week, i made open-faced tomato sandwiches. this process is really not even a recipe, but just a personal preference on how to make a tomato sandwich.
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one of the best steps of the sandwich, is to grow your own tomato. if it is an heirloom tomato, then the sandwich is even better. i toast my slice of bread, add a smear of low-fat mayonnaise, a bit of crumbled crispy bacon, some fresh lettuce leaves, and then the sliced tomato. sometimes i even top with some sea salt and freshly ground pepper.

served with a side salad, this is one of my favorite “end of the summer” meals to enjoy for lunch or dinner.

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super bowl bacon dip

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well, the super bowl is a distant memory again for another year.  although, there are many more sporting events coming up where appetizers are going to be needed for sports fans of all types.  i found this recipe from a New Orleans cookbook, where the recipes were submitted by home cooks and not chefs.  i find those books to have some of the best recipes ever.

this one was called bacon dip and was excellent.  i only made small amount this time, but if i have a large group over, i will certainly make this one again.  it was just that good.

i would also say that this is a guys favorite, and a great recipe for those tailgate parties.

here is how the recipe was printed in the book:

8 ounces sour cream, 1 jar bacon bits, 1 pack Italian dressing mix–dry powder, and 1 cup finely shredded Cheddar cheese.

mix all of these ingredients together and refrigerate for several hours.  serve with crackers or chips.

when i prepared this recipe, i only took a portion of these ingredients and it was very good. i also used real bacon in a package found in the salad dressing section of the market, instead of the bacon bits in a jar.

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