My Eggs! My Eggs!

Yesterday, I blogged about a lovely Baked Eggs Florentine I had for lunch.  My friend, Lola, wondered if this would be a dish she could tote to an upcoming brunch.  I suggested a solution that involves pre-prepping certain ingredients at home and performing final assembly at the home of the host or hostess.  However, I have a cache of favorite recipes more suitable for toting.

Keep in mind that you won’t be committing any great sin if you have these for dinner.  By tradition, Breakfast for Dinner night at our house makes an otherwise run-of-the-mill weeknight exciting and special.  Nothing should stop you from doing that every night, though, if that is your desire.  It is much easier to cook for yourself, stay healthy, and save money if you’re willing to think outside the box.  Do what is best for yourself and your schedule.  Have dinner food at breakfast and breakfast food at dinner, if it better suits your needs.

I will start by referring you back to my favorite eggy recipe, Jalapeno Heaven.  This is my go-to recipe for potlucks, guests, and regular household fare.  It is low in sugar, low in carbs, and very tasty.  You can tweak it in any number of ways to suit your own tastes, and it is a guaranteed winner.

I think this next recipe is my husband’s favorite when it comes to the eggy recipes I’ve made over the years.  It is called Monte Cristo Casserole.  I had this at a diner in Texas many years ago and finally came across a good rendition of the recipe on RecipeZaar.  When made exactly as shown, it is not the healthiest recipe among the din.  However, there are several ways to lighten it up.  To be a real crowd pleaser, your best bet is to use the frozen French Toast.  However, if you do… you will want to take the egg substitute option.  There is a whole school of scientific mumbo jumbo that explains why eating whole eggs is perfectly fine as part of a carb controlled diet.  I will refer you to an article in The Journal of Nutrition and encourage you to Google the topic further.  Suffice it to say… works for me.  My aim is not to bore you to death.  For our purposes here, I recommend you use the egg substitute if you employ the carby French Toast.

I see absolutely no need to top this with powdered sugar.  I have never bothered with strawberry ice cream topping, either.  Having said that, Smuckers makes some pretty good sugar free toppings, jams, and syrups, if the syrup option looks attractive to you.  They have a sugar free blueberry breakfast syrup that might be a nice addition.  Any kind of sugar free jam might work.  Finally, you can always resort to the trusty sugar free pancake syrup you have in your kitchen already if you made my Autumn Gold Pumpkin Butter recipe.  Neither myself nor my husband have ever seen the need for any sugar or syrupy topping.  From time to time, we do dip it in a little ketchup.  I have successfully made the Monte Cristo Casserole without the French Toast.  It certainly isn’t as exciting this way, but it is still very good and much less damaging.  You can certainly use just half of the called for amount of toast.  Most of the time, I do a 50 / 50 version where one half the pan includes the French Toast for my husband and the other half is French Toast free for me.  Simply increase the other ingredients on the toast free side to make sure the recipe is a consistent height across the pan before putting it into the oven.  The best thing about this recipe is that you can assemble it the night before, store it in the refrigerator, then wake up and pop it into the oven.  It is also very good as a cold or reheated leftover.  This  makes it perfect for a potluck or to provide you with a few day’s worth of lunch.

Another favorite breakfast / brunch / egg type recipe among my family is Matzoh Brie.  This is a recipe traditionally eaten by Jewish folks at Passover when only unleavened bread is allowed.  It is pronounced “br-eye”. If you Google the topic, you will find that it is spelled 40,000 different ways, and there exists as many varieties of ingredients.   There is no reason why you can’t eat it throughout the rest of the year and for whatever meal you wish. Some serve it on Christmas morning.

Ingredients
4 sheets of matzoh
4 large eggs or 1 cup egg substitute
boiling water
non-stick spray
salt and pepper

Directions

  • Boil water in a kettle. You won’t need very much of it. Maybe 1/3 cup.
  • Break up matzoh into a medium to large bowl. You want the pieces to be about the size of regular crackers.
  • Pour boiling water over matzoh just a little at a time to slightly moisten it.
  • Spray a medium sized frying pan / saute pan / skillet with non-stick spray and place over medium heat.
  • If using whole eggs, blend them in a smaller bowl with salt and pepper.
  • Add egg mixture to the matzoh bowl and very gently mix to coat. If you’re using egg subtitute, you can forget the smaller bowl and just pour it right into the Matzoh bowl.
  • Place the entire matzoh / egg mixture into pan. Cook over medium heat until eggs start to set. Flip and cook until eggs fully set or you have the level of doneness you desire.
  • Cut like a pizza into 4 – 8 servings.

Allow me to now impart to you some tips. To get just the right amount of moisture in step 3, I pour just a tiny bit of boiling water into the bowl at a time and then swirl the bowl around until the matzoh soaks it up and I see no extra. Then I add a little more water. I keep doing this until I see just enough extra water to be sure the matzoh is saturated. You do not want to add too much water. You’re looking for moist matzoh… not soggy matzoh.

To make the Matzoh Brie easier to turn in the pan, I cut it in half twice to make 4 big wedges.  Then, I flip each wedge.  To me, it is much easier to turn this way.  Some people quite successfully turn the whole thing at once without breaking it.  I am not one of those people.

To lighten this up or make it more wholesome, you can choose a more suitable variety of matzoh. There are whole grain, low sodium, and ultra thin varieties available at most supermarkets. Though unleavened, matzoh is still bread, so your best bet is to use egg substitute instead of whole eggs. It tastes just as good and dirties up fewer dishes. Sometimes I will use Southwestern style Eggbeaters to add a kick.

I always use Morton’s Lite Salt in place of regular table salt in any recipe to lower the sodium content. You can also use less salt and spice your Matzoh Brie up in other ways. I’ve used regular chopped onions, onion powder, a variety of fresh or dry herbs and spices… There is all the room in the world for creativity here. As is usually the case, some people opt to slather on sugary toppings I find to be unnecessary. A little ketchup does the trick if you need anything at all. Salsa is a wonderful accoutrement with little to no nutritional cost if you choose your brand wisely.  You can make a much larger serving in an electric skillet.  The general rule is 1 egg per sheet of matzoh.

Matzoh Brie holds up to the tote-along and leftover tests quite nicely.

Finally, I will link you to some other tried and true recipes.  The nutritional content varies.  Be sure to moderate your servings and substitute ingredients as necessary.  Keep in mind the whole carbs-to-eggs thing.  I would apply the same rules when deciding whether to use full fat, low fat, or fat free cheeses.  The less carbs I eat, the more I allow myself full fat dairy.   My nutritional lifestyle is one of moderate to low carbs.  I do take the preferences of others into account when making meals for several people and potlucks.  These recipes aren’t necessarily low in carbs as listed.  Most of the time, non-stick spray is perfectly fine when oil is called for in the pan.  Margarine can be used in place of butter, if that’s what your program requires.  Etc.

Joni’s Garden Veggie Quiche

Linda’s Spinach Cheese Bake

Cheesy Confetti Pepper Egg Thing – This was just me making the Jalapeno Heaven a little bit different, but it seems to have garnered many good reviews.

Easy Chile Relleno on RecipeZaar

Southwestern Rice and Corn Frittata on GoodHousekeeping – You can certainly reduce the amount of rice and/or corn in this one.  You can replace the corn with less starchy veggies.  Many ways to lighten this up.

Oooh, you can always make Soy Marinated Eggs as a low carb option.  Sounds gross, but they’re fantastic.  I just finished off another batch of these myself!

Nothing screams Autumn like boiled eggs in soy sauce.

Nothing screams Autumn like boiled eggs in soy sauce.

That’s about all for now.  Kind of long and rambly and stream-of-consciousness this morning.  Sorry! :)

Comments

  1. BRILLIANT post! I thought it was great. My favorite subject: Eggs!

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