Tag Archives: Breakfast

Zucchini Jam with a Fried Egg: Breakfast of Champions

21 Jun


A few years ago I was in search of something hearty, comforting, and grilled-cheesey. I found all that and more in this recipe from one of my favorites, Big Girls Small Kitchen

{ Golden Zucchini Sandwich – Big Girls Small Kitchen }

While that recipe is just divine, it’s not what I’m going to be talking about. There is a part of this recipe that literally blew my mind, and has now become a staple in my kitchen anytime I need something cheap/healthy/tasty/light/heavy/warm/cold/dark/light/you get it right? It’s just an all-around satisfying item. Zucchini “jam”.

This is literally one of the easiest things you can make, and it’s SO good on it’s own, with eggs, in a sandwich (such as grilled cheese…), whatevs. So here, today, I’d like to share the easiest, tastiest thing you can make with 3(ish) ingredients, and 20 minutes.

You’ll need: garlic, olive oil, zucchini (+and fresh herbs you may have lying around, dill and basil work really well here).

Thinly slice your garlic, I used 3 cloves (think Italian mafia guys in prison slicing garlic with a razor blade)


Heat about 1 Tbs olive oil in a pan over medium heat (if you’ve got a 1-10 heating knob on your stove, I’d got with about a 4-5), and add garlic. While this is happening, grate your zucchini, I used 4 small…and don’t worry about holding your camera steady, people like a blurry picture


Add the zucchini to the now kind-of-golden garlic


Give a heavy-handed sprinkle of salt and a few grinds of fresh pepper, and stir. Now walk away. Do it!

Over the next 15-20 minutes, exercise all the strength you have to only go over and give it a stir about 3 times. This gets the zucchini nice and caramely, and reduces it down to a nice, jam-like consistency. A few times when you go over you’ll see a lot of liquid released…DON’T PANIC! It’ll cook away.

Let’s make this interesting and add a fried egg.


Now add some freshly chopped herbs to your jam-like zucchini, I used dill


Now marry the two and add some hot sauce, because variety is the spice of life, my friends.


Oh yeah, my yolk popped while I wasn’t looking, so that’s why it looks like whatever that is. This is just a delightful meal, and the best way to start any day.

Zucchini “Jam” Adapted from Big Girls Small Kitchen

  • 3 Cloves Garlic
  • 1 Tbs Olive Oil
  • 4 Small or 2 Medium Zucchini
  • 2 Tbs Fresh Dill
  • 1 Fried Egg (yolk preferably runny)
  1. Heat oil over medium heat. Thinly slice garlic and add to oil to brown slightly.
  2. Grate zucchini, add to garlic. Let sit for 15-20 minutes, stir 3-4 times. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  3. Once zucchini is cooked through take off heat, and stir in freshly chopped herbs.
  4. Top with fried egg.

Lemon-Rosemary Scented Scones

25 Apr



There is nothing better than a good scone, emirite? I explored this topic a bit back in September and voiced my concerns regarding the baked and fluffy arts (over/under mixing). The trick to a good scone or biscuit is not over mixing the butter and flour mixture because it’s those bigger chunks of butter spread throughout the dough that creates the delicious layered fluffy goodness that you want in said pastry. Well, unfortunately I have not mastered the proper mixing consistency, however I am starting to get more confident.

With that said, not only do I like a good scone, I LOVE a good savory scone. Cheddar dill? Yes please! Keeping this in mind, I came across the following recipe and knew I had to have it inside of me:

{ Lemon-Rosemary scented Scones from Ancient Grains for Modern Meals by Maria Speck } which I know I’ve talked about before, and it really is one of my most cherished cook books (go buy it!)

Yes, it’s not necessarily a savory recipe, per se, but the incorporation of the rosemary I thought would lend the perfect amount of “not-too sweet” to this (hopefully) fluffy treat. I also had all the ingredients readily available, so I knew it was the baking gods way of saying “yup, this is how you’re spending your afternoon”


So I thought “oh man, lemon and rosemary! What a great photo op” but I neglected to notice that I only had 1/2 of a sad lemon at my disposal. So I apologize for whatever this is:



Anyhoo, this recipe is super easy (and uses wheat flour, huzzah), even when you’re over-mixing your flour and butter. You also get to create a delicious mixture of sour cream, lemon zest, and chopped fresh rosemary for the dough.

SourCreamSo once you’ve added your sour cream mixture and overworked your dough, roll it out (read: gingerly smash down with your palms) into a circle, and cut into 1/8ths.

SconeDoughBrush buttermilk over the top of the scones and sprinkle a HEALTHY dose of sugar over each piece.

SconeSheetBake, take out, try to let cool, enjoy.

SconesAs I had feared, I completely overworked the dough, so I didn’t get my fluffy scone texture, however they were REALLY tasty. The lemon and the rosemary weren’t overpowering, and completely earned their “scented” title from the name of the recipe.

I’d say the thing I enjoyed the most was waking up the next morning to see a pile of these bad boys on the counter and thinking “holy crap, I forgot I made those! Happy Breakfast to us all!”



Nothing Says “Happy Easter” Like A Smoked Salmon Platter

31 Mar

EasterHappy Easter! While I’m not making a fancy holiday meal today (I have to get ready for Game of Thrones tonight, duh), we started the day with a platter of Smoked Salmon (with fresh dill, pea shoots, hard boiled egg, red onion, tomatoes, and an assortment of toasted bagels and english muffins), lots of fruit (clementines, bananas, grapes, mangoes, and apples), and some roasted asparagus for good measure.

Hangover? What hangover! Uh…I mean Happy Easter!

Easter1{ yes, that’s an Obama mug }



Sweet Potato Hash with Apple and Sage Sausage, Roasted Asparagus, and a Poached Egg

29 Mar


My parents came into town a few weekends ago to celebrate my birthday (hello last year of mid-twenties). How did we celebrate? By going to Detroit’s Eastern Market, of course. I like to think of it as the Brooklyn of Detroit (however don’t take my word on it, I am in no way a connoisseur of Detroit-ings, I’m just a fan).

While there I got special birthday $1 bundles of veggies (we got there pretty late in the day) such as asparagus, PURPLE cauliflower (which I’ll go into for another post), tomatoes, brussels sprouts, squash, and (non veggie) blueberries. I also got a nice package of Pork, Sage, and Apple sausages from Corridor Sausage Co. Holy Christ. Delicious. We all left Eastern Market that day full of sausage samples from various vendors, and the knowledge of what time to get there for the discounted merchandise. It was a birthday event not to be forgotten.

While I’ve been utilizing my veggies for most of the week, I had to make a decision: use the sausage, or pop into the freezer. I came across this recipe and was inspired:

{ Food52 – Merguez and Sweet Potato Hash }

I saved one sausage to utilize for this dish, and put the rest in the freezer. While I’m a big lover of the cured and spiced meats, I’ve realized that with good product, you don’t need to over power the dish with too much of a good thing (and the same goes for cheese). So I paired one sausage with one LARGE sweet potato and created a meal fit for a grad student and amateur home chef (i.e. John and I).

First thing’s first, let’s use this delicious $1 Asparagus and pop it in the oven while we prepare the hash in question

  • Preheat oven to 400F. Place asparagus on tinfoil-lined baking sheet, drizzle with olive oil and a sprinkle of salt.
  • Roast for 15 minutes (check them around 10 minutes, I like mine a little al dente). Take out and set aside.


While your apartment (or house, for those of you who are “real” adults) fills with the sweet smells of slowly caramelizing asparagus, let’s brown up that sausage.


Which will yield us this



Yes, it doesn’t look like much, but trust me, it’s just the right amount. Now, potato time



Give these Amber beauties a chop, and sauté them with some onions in the delicious sausage drippings.PotatoOnion



Let’s get a little crazy, let’s add spices! I choose a hodgepodge of cumin, fennel, and corriander.



Oh yeah, my coffee is going to taste savory this weekend! I didn’t add much though, I’d say 1.5 teaspoons of spice in total



Now here’s the tricky part (for those of you who are impatient like me). You want to get a nice browning on the potatoes, so you give it a stir, and let it sit, then give it another stir, and let it sit. All I want to to is keep stirring! You also have to be careful not to break up your now-soft potatoes while doing said stirring. But with the right touch, you’ll be in sweet potato-browning country. Once you’ve achieved this, stir back in the sausage until it’s all warmed through



Do a quick Poached Egg, arrange the asparagus on the bottom, pile on the hash, and top with that ooey-gooey egg.



And now for some porn:



Sweet Potato and Sausage Hash

  • 1tsp oil
  • 1 Tasty Sausage, casing removed
  • 1 Large Sweet Potato, diced
  • 1 Medium/Large Sweet Onion, diced
  • 1/2 tsp Cumin, ground
  • 1/2 tsp Coriander, ground
  • 1/2 tsp Fennel, ground

Heat cast iron skillet over medium hight heat. Add 1 tbs oil and brown your sausage (about 5 minutes)

Remove sausage with slotted spoon. Add sweet potato, onions, and spices to pan

Cook, stirring in frequently, until potato is soft and browned on the edges (about 15 minutes)

Add sausage back to pan, cook until heated through

Lemon-Blueberry Pancakes with a Side of Procrastination

6 Feb

Last February I had a thought: Pancakes. I’m going to make pancakes for dinner. And you know what happened? A year went by, and no cake was prepared in my pan. I always had all the ingredients (I mean, who doesn’t), but when it came down to it, I was never back in the mood. I’ve never been an order-pancakes-for-brekafast-when-we-go-out because

  1. They always give you way too much
  2. I really like eggs
  3. And goat cheese with eggs
  4. I know how much all those ingredients cost, and no the $8 you want to charge me isn’t even close

So I never end up getting pancakes. Or French Toast for that matter. Now fast forward to present day. I’m going grocery shopping, and creating a rough menu in my head of the week’s meals, and you know what pops back in there? Pancakes! I decided to grab hold of this grain of wanting and see where it takes me. After perusing through my Food52 Cookbook I came across { Lemony Cream Cheese Pancakes with Blueberries } Well, my friends, it doesn’t get much better than that. Now, you may be asking yourself “why get the Food52 Cookbook when all the recipes are available online?” and that’s something I ask myself as well. However, I like to support the things I like in the most influential way I am able, and that is with my wallet. I get 10s, maybe even 100s of recipes from this site annually, all for free. I am happy to spend the one time fee of $20+ to purchase a wonderful, physical book full of photos, stories, tips, and most importantly, recipes. And if there is something I don’t see in there, I’ll just hop on their FREE site, and look for more. Remember, the internet has made many things accessible, easy, and free. Which is wonderful. But don’t forget to support these great people who are making it possible for you to finally become more than a mediocre chef. They need to make a living as well! Now let’s hope I don’t fall as I get off this soapbox.

Anyhoo, back to the delights of the pancake arts. I was intrigued by this recipe because the thought of blueberries made me think of Summer, and glancing outside at the disaster that is January in Michigan, any semblance of warmer days of yore were welcome. So frozen blueberries griddled into batter became my culinary escape.


I’m sorry, does that say cream cheese? You bet your ass it does! The recipe calls for 6 oz of cream cheese cut into little chunks (I only used about 4 oz since I happened to have that much left in a “lite” Trader Joe’s cream cheese container…note to self: don’t use “lite” cream cheese for anything that involves being cut up since it just mushes, and you have to pull small pieces apart with your hands and slosh them into the wet ingredients, which is the imagery you can to instill into your potential diners’ heads). Speaking of pulling cream cheese apart with your hands, did you know that it’s pretty time consuming since IT NEVER COMES OFF YOUR HANDS AND YOU HAVE IT FLING IT AROUND UNTIL YOU’RE FRUSTRATED AND 40% OF IT HAS LANDED EVERYWHERE BUT THE BOWL IT’S INTENDED FOR? At least it takes long enough for that melted butter you just poured into the COLD milk mixture to congeal (which you can see the beginning of in the “butter” photo). Crap. But going back to the cream cheese addition, if mixed as intended, it will yield small pockets of cream cheese creaminess/savoriness/dairy goodness intermingled with the lemon and blueberries. I was in. And don’t worry, the butter ended up being just fine, no need to FREAKOUT.

We have a panini press that also has smooth plates for “griddling” so bingo baango. Pancake time. These did take longer to cook than I thought, but I also haven’t made pancakes since I was of the age of making the “baby pancakes” out of the drips with my mom, so who asked me anyways. You ladle the mixture onto the griddle, and then sprinkle the blueberries on top. My hands were a nice shade of mauve at the end of breakfast.



Look at that glorious sunshine coming in to settle upon my cakes! They were even delicious with the $1 Meijer “Basics” Pancake Syrup that I had since I’ll be a son of a bitch if I’m spending $8 to get good Maple Syrup…I’ve made a huge mistake.




This recipe made so many, we ended up having like 6 leftover. I left them on the kitchen counter: big mistake. Throughout the rest of the day every time I wanted a snack, I just grabbed a pancake with my hand, and walked around eating it like an apple. A cream cheesy and summer blueberry calorie packed apple. We ended the day with none leftover, and by “we” I  mean I ate the rest: I ate them all! Thank god I run.

So anyways, I made these about 2 weeks ago, and I’ve had the photos edited for about 1.5 weeks of that time. Why haven’t I posted? You’re not my mother so get off my back! Actually, I’ve been trying to do other things than run in the dark and insane cold, or go to the gym and do the same routine I do every time I’m there, so I’ve done P90X, something called Cardio Karate (which after glancing at the mirror and seeing my sad attempt at a punch, I have to face the harsh reality that I’ll be no good getting someone’s “back” during a brawl), Hot Yoga for which I had a groupon for, and I carved myself out a new running route. Mixing it up makes working out FUN again, and now I have all sorts of strange parts that are sore. Changing it up, however, has caused me to get home at the end of the night and think “blog, nope” so I will again re-dedicate myself to the culinary and self-deprecating arts, and venture further into Flavor Country.


Lemony Cream Cheese Pancakes with Blueberries } From Food52:

  • 1 1/2cup flour
  • 1tablespoon sugar
  • 1tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2teaspoon baking soda
  • 1pinch salt
  • 2large eggs, separated
  • 1cup buttermilk
  • 6ounces cream cheese, cut up
  • 3teaspoons melted butter
  • 1teaspoon vanilla
  • 2tablespoons lemon juice
  • zest of one large lemon
  • 1 1/2cup fresh or frozen blueberries
  1. In a medium bowl, mix together flour, sugar baking powder, baking soda, salt. In a separate bowl, whisk together egg yolks, buttermilk. Add cream cheese and mix until cream cheese has separated into uniformly small lumps, about the size of large cottage cheese curds. Stir in melted butter, vanilla, lemon juice and lemon zest.
  2. Add dry ingredients to wet, then stir to combine. Whisk two egg whites until stiff but not dry; fold gently into batter.
  3. Heat a griddle or cast iron pan over medium high heat, until a drop of water sizzles. Lower heat to medium; butter or oil pan. Drop batter into pan by 1/3 cupfuls. Once the batter has spread, drop in the berries. You might want to drizzle some batter to cover them. These need to be cooked a bit longer than you might expect; they won’t bubble as quickly or as much as plain pancakes. Turn down the heat if necessary, to keep them from overbrowning, and let them puff up to their full extent after you turn them, which will take 2-3 minutes. Serve with honey or maple syrup or jam (editor’s note: or $1 Miejer Basics Pancake “Syrup”)






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