Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Breakfast Eggs

This recipe came from an old coworker of mine many years ago. I've changed it and added variations over the years, but it's her basic recipe.
The name of this dish, "Breakfast Eggs" has always sounded so weird to me, but this is what I was told it's called and I've never questioned it.
Also, this is a dish that might not sound good by reading it but I promise you, it's super good! I like to make it on lazy Sundays for brunch, or even for dinner on a weeknight when I'm craving some breakfast foods!
You Will Need
6 pieces of white bread (or your bread of choice)
6 large eggs
shredded cheese (your preferred variety)
breakfast meat of choice
6 pats* of butter
You will notice that there is sausage in this picture. I overcooked the sausage and didn't use it in the recipe.

Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Place your pieces of bread flat in a 9x13 casserole dish. You might have to squeeze them in, but they'll fit.

Scramble your eggs. Make sure they are well mixed.

Pour the eggs over the white bread evenly.
*I forgot to take a picture of this, but add the butter now!*

Add the cheese. You will notice I didn't state a measurement for the cheese. That is because I just shake the bag and when it looks good to me, I stop. They are really very few occasions in life where you can add too much cheese.

Stick it in the oven for approximately 25 - 30 minutes**.

It should look similar to this. The bread should be slightly crisp on the edges and you will need to make sure the egg is fully cooked and the cheese is properly melted throughout.

Since I ruined the sausage, I made the dish sans meat and had some kielbasa on the side.

*The word "pats" always seems funny to me in relation to cooking, but it's literally just a little slice of butter.

**Oven cooking times will vary.

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Country Store Apple Cider

I was born in Maryland; on the Patuxent River Naval Base to be exact. My daddy was in the Marines and we were stationed there until I was 3 years old.
There was a Christmas Country store in Maryland that my mom and grandma would always go to, and they served light refreshments including apple cider there.

I've had a lot of apple cider over the year and nothing compares to this recipe. It's the actual recipe the store used and a Thanksgiving and Christmas tradition in my family. You can fix it on the stove or in a crock pot, but we've always made it in the crock pot because it's just easy. You can keep it in there during parties and the guests can just serve themselves out of it!
I asked my mom if I could please share her recipe and she consented, but she did mention that she had to pay the store to get the recipe herself! When I asked how much, concerned that I was about to give away some deep, expensive secret she replied very nonchalantly, "Oh, $.25 or $.50..."

We'll just go ahead and let y'all have it for free! Ha!

It's great to be served at a holiday party or just on a regular day to warm you up inside.

You Will Need
One gallon of apple juice
1/2 of a lime
1/2 of a lemon
12 cloves
2 cinnamon sticks

Put the crockpot on low, as this can stay in all day long and you do not want it to boil or get too hot.

Dump in the apple juice and then do the following:
1. Slice the lemon and limes and insert the cloves into them like you see in the picture.
2. Insert a cinnamon stick into one and let the other just float.
3. Place the slices in the juice.

Wait for it to heat and then....enjoy!

Such a simply good drink! One variation you could take is to put red hots at the bottom of the crockpot. This will give it an extra spice! I like it both ways!

Pecan Pie

Pie is a Thanksgiving staple. You probably won't find any family feast that doesn't serve at least one type of pie, and each family has their specialty.

In my family, traditionally we've served both pumpkin and chocolate pie. My grandma likes mincemeat pie, but she's the only one so it rarely gets made.

My favorite is pecan pie and up until this year, I've never made one. I was always intimidated by pecan pie. It scared me to attempt to make one because I thought it was some complicated recipe that only master chefs could take on.

Boy, was I wrong! Pecan pie is super easy to make. And fast! And you only need 7 ingredients total! That includes your pie crust!

You Will Need
Oven preheated to 350 degrees
1 cup white sugar
1 cup light corn syrup
3 eggs
1 cup chopped pecans
1 tbsp vanilla
1 pie crust
You must prebake the pie crust for about 10 minutes before you dump the ingredients in it and let the pie bake. If not, you will have an undercooked crust and you really don't want that! Now, I use a premade crust from the refrigerated section of the grocery store. If you know how to make crust from scratch then more power to you, but pie crust and I have a long unhappy history together! Make sure you poke holes in the bottom with a fork so it doesn't try and bubble up in the pie dish.

Combine all the ingredients except the pecans into a mixing bowl and stir.

You will probably need to work this mixture for about 3 minutes, but whatever you do make sure the sugar is fully dissolved.

Add the pecans and make sure they are thoroughly coated.

Pour the mixture into the pie crust and place it in the oven to bake for about 45 minutes.*

When you pull it out of the oven, it should be golden brown on top. The filling might be slightly soft still, but it will harden as it sets.

Top with whipped cream or ice cream and enjoy!

*Oven cooking times vary. Please judge your oven accordingly.