Omelette Muffins

These omelette muffins are a great, hands-off ways to cook eggs on a busy morning. It’s easy to tailor each omelette for individual tastes (Jason likes spinach but not ham; Simon doesn’t like spinach; Ian will try anything; I sometimes skip the cheese; you get the idea). 

Ingredients:

  • 1 pound Italian sausage, browned (or whatever kind of meat you prefer — or no meat, for that matter; we’ve been using ham)
  • 1 cup broccoli florets (and/or other veggies; we’ve been doing spinach and mushrooms)
  • 1/2 cup shredded cheese (more or less to taste)
  • 8 large eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk (or half and half)
  • 1/2 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder
  • salt and pepper to taste
Directions:
  • Preheat oven to 375 F.
  • Lightly spray a 12-muffin pan with oil or cooking spray.
  • Spoon out the sausage, broccoli, and cheese (or whatever ingredients you are using) into the muffin cups.
  • Whisk together eggs, milk, oil, and baking powder.  Season with salt and pepper.
  • Ladle the egg mixture over the other ingredients.
  • Bake for 15 to 20 minutes (mini muffins take more like 12-14 minutes).

Hot Pudding

This chocolate pudding, called simply “hot pudding” at our house is from Deceptively Delicious. Simon asks for it every time he sees an avocado. The texture of the pudding depends on how well you mash the avocado; I sometimes use a blender or food mill (like for baby food) and sometimes just mash it with a fork. 

Ingredients:

  • 1/4 cup margarine (or butter would probably work too)
  • 1 cup avocado puree (aka mashed avocado — about 2 ripe avocados)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch (optional-ish)

Directions:

  1. In a medium saucepan, melt the margarine over low heat.
  2. Stir in the avocado, powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and vanilla.
  3. Cook until the mixture thickens, 3 to 4 minutes.
  4. Remove from heat and gradually stir in the cornstarch.
  5. Serve warm.

Low Fat Blueberry Banana Bread

I found this yummy recipe on epicurious.com and tweaked a little by making it more low fat, using whole wheat flour, and adding blueberries.  It’s outstanding.

** (Renae here): I have been making this regularly since Brook first posted it. I much prefer her version with the blueberries, but I make it with chocolate chips as a treat for the kiddos (pictured here). I also add 2-3 tablespoons of ground flaxseed and up the applesauce to 2 tablespoons — you know, to even out the health factor with the chocolate chips.

Ingredients

  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 cup smashed ripe bananas (about 3 medium)
  • 1/3 cup buttermilk (or kefir)
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil or applesauce
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 3/4 cups all purpose flour (I use 1/2 whole wheat, 1/2 white)
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 325°F.
  2. Lightly grease 8 1/2×4 1/2×2 1/2-inch pan; dust with flour.
  3. Using electric mixer; beat eggs and sugar in large bowl until thick and light, about 5 minutes.
  4. Mix in smashed bananas, buttermilk, oil and vanilla.
  5. Sift flour, baking powder, baking soda and salt over mixture; beat until just blended.
  6. Fold in blueberries.
  7. Transfer batter to prepared pan.
  8. Bake bread until golden brown on top and tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 1 hour.
  9. Turn bread out onto rack and cool.

Spinach Pesto

We are big fans of pesto around here. Sadly, we ran out of last summer’s homemade pesto long ago, and I forgot to pick up a jar from the grocery store this week. I remembered spinach, though, and I vaguely remembered seeing a recipe (or three) for spinach pesto, so I Googled it and came up with a bunch of recipes. This is a combination of three or four of them because, yeah, I didn’t have all that stuff. It was tasty and super easy — had it not been crazytime at our house, it probably could have come together in about 10 minutes.

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups fresh spinach leaves
  • 1/2 cup fresh cilantro (I used cilantro because I had it on hand, but the “real” recipe called for Italian flat leaf parsley)
  • 1/2 cup walnuts or pine nuts, toasted (I used walnuts because, again, I had them; I just toasted them in a skillet. I don’t know if I did it right, but they tasted just fine)
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 3 garlic cloves
  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Place all ingredients in a food processor or blender and grind to a fine paste.
  2. Taste and adjust seasonings.

We like to toss our pesto with pasta (and sometimes we add chicken too).

Red Beans and Rice

I can’t believe this recipe isn’t on here already. **Based on Bethany’s comments and trying it myself with different proportions (is that the right word? It sounds wrong), I have updated the recipe. These amounts seem better for my sausage-loving and can-only-eat-so-much boys.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 pound fully cooked smoked sausage (i.e., kielbasa), sliced into 1/2-inch-thick pieces
  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 4 cloves garlic, chopped
  • 2 (14 1/2-ounce) cans kidney beans, undrained
  • 1 cup low-salt chicken broth
  • 1 teaspoon Creole or Cajun seasoning (or 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper)
  • 3 (or more) cups cooked rice

Directions:

  1. In a Dutch oven, heat olive oil. Add sausage, onion, and garlic and sauté until onion is brown, about 15 minutes.
  2. Mix in undrained kidney beans, broth, and seasoning.
  3. Reduce heat to medium-low; cover and simmer until flavors are blended and mixture is very thick, stirring occasionally, about 45 minutes.
  4. Divide cooked rice among large shallow soup bowls. Spoon bean mixture over rice and serve hot.

Lazy Day Lasagne

This recipe is from the (old) Zion Cookbook. I think Brook has a similar recipe from her mom. It’s on the menu at our house this week.

1 12-ounce carton cottage cheese

2 cups mozzarella cheese, shredded

2 eggs

1/3 cup parsley, chopped

1 teaspoon onion powder

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1/8 teaspoon pepper

1 jar spaghetti sauce

1 pound ground beef or sausage, browned

9 lasagna noodles, uncooked

1/4 cup water

Parmesan cheese, grated

In a large bowl, mix cottage cheese, mozzarella cheese, eggs, parsley, onion powder, basil, and pepper; set aside. In medium bowl, mix spaghetti sauce and ground beef; set aside. In a 9 x 13 pan, spread 3/4 cup meat mixture in bottom. Layer with 3 uncooked noodles. Spread half of cottage cheese mixture and 1 1/2 cup meat sauce. Layer with 3 more uncooked noodles. Spread remaining cottage cheese mixture over noodles. Top with remaining noodles and meat sauce. Pour water around edges. Cover with foil. Bake at 375 degrees for 45 minutes. Remove foil and bake for 15 additional minutes or until golden brown. Just before serving, sprinkle top of lasagna with Parmesan cheese.

Black Bean Dip

I really don’t know what to call this. It’s kind of a dip. It’s kind of a salsa. It’s fresh-tasting and pretty.

1 can (16 oz.) black beans, drained and rinsed
1 can (16 oz.) whole kernel corn, drained and rinsed
1 can (16 oz.) diced tomatoes, drained and rinsed (actually, it’s better to use fresh tomatoes if they’re available)
1 big handful fresh cilantro, chopped
1 medium red onion, diced
2 tablespoons (or so, maybe up to 1/3 cup) red wine vinegar.
1 medium avacado, diced

Mix all ingredients except the avacado together in a large bowl and refrigerate. Add the avacado just before serving.

Serve with tortilla chips.