Monday, August 14, 2017

Sausage, Egg, and Potato Breakfast Casserole

As I prepare to leave for a camping trip with my family to one of our many amazing National Parks, I find myself turning to this recipe for the third time.  We travel in our RV and though there are generally no hook ups (for electricity, water, etc.) at the National Park campgrounds, we do have a gas oven that we can use.  I have made this recipe for two other trips and it has been the perfect breakfast to fill us up for the adventures of the day.  There are three steps to the process: the prep, the baking with foil, and the baking without foil.  I do the first two of those steps at home before we leave.  This leaves just the baking without foil to do on the trip.  Unfortunately, I have never taken a picture of the finished product on one of our trips.  Maybe this time I will and post an update.  In the meantime, I didn't want any more time to go by without posting this!

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 pound Italian sausage (sweet, hot, or mild)
  • 1 medium white onion, peeled and diced
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 red bell pepper, cored and diced (or 1 jar of roasted red peppers, drained and diced)
  • 6 eggs
  • 1/3 cup milk
  • 1 (20 ounce) bag frozen hash browns, thawed
  • 2 cups shredded cheddar or mozzarella cheese
  • 1/4 teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper
  • (optional topping: thinly sliced green onions)

DIRECTIONS:
  1. Heat oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Add the sausage to a medium saute pan. Cook over medium-high heat until browned, crumbling the sausage with a spoon as it cooks. Remove sausage with a slotted spoon and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Reserve about 1 tablespoon of sausage grease in the saute pan, discarding the rest. 
  3. Add the onion and red pepper* to the saute pan, and saute for 5 minutes until cooked. Add the garlic and saute for an additional 2 minutes until fragrant. (*If using the jarred roasted red peppers, wait to stir them until after the garlic.) 
  4. Pour the vegetable mixture into the mixing bowl with the sausage. Add the hash browns and 1 1/2 cups cheese to the mixing bowl with the sausage and veggies. Stir to combine.
  5. In a separate bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk and black pepper until combined. Then add them to the hashbrown mixture, and stir to combine. Pour the mixture into a 11x7-inch or a 9x9-inch baking dish (a 9x13-inch dish will also work), and top with the remaining 1/2 cup of shredded cheese.
  6. Cover with aluminum foil and bake for 20 minutes. Then remove the aluminum foil and bake for an additional 10-15 minutes and the top of the potatoes begin to slightly brown. Remove and let the casserole rest for 5 minutes. Sprinkle with green onions and serve!
Difficulty: Medium
Time: 20 minutes prep, 35 minutes baking

Friday, June 16, 2017

Thin Mint Smoothie

You know those subscriptions services that you can subscribe to where you pay a fee and then you get a box filled with goodies (like clothes or pet supplies or beauty items) delivered to your door? They are all over the place these days.  You can even order a "man box" to be delivered to a favorite man in your life.  There is something exciting about getting that box filled with who-knows-what that someone else put together for you.  That is exactly what getting my CSA is like for me!  I get a bag filled with the best fruits and veggies around, along with recipes to try.  This week was my first pick-up and I was thrilled!

One of the reasons I like the CSA is also one of the reasons I liked the clothing box service that I tried once - it pushed me out of my comfort zone.  I would not have bought that sweater, but I loved it once I had it on!  Likewise, I would not have bought mint or scapes this week, but goodness gracious am I glad they were in my CSA.  This shake that I made with the mint is incredible...just what I needed on a hot summer day.  My daughter had a friend over and when I shared with the three kids, she told me I should give her mom the recipe. (I didn't bother telling her how healthy it is.) Win!!

(P.S. Don't know what a CSA is? Here is a link to try: What is a CSA?)

INGREDIENTS:
  • 1.5 oz spinach
  • 1 banana
  • 1 apple
  • 3-5 sprigs fresh mint - stemmed
  • 1 tbsp cacao powder
  • 1 tsp cacao nibs (I couldn't find any at my grocery store, so I used dark chocolate chips)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup ice

DIRECTIONS:
Blend all ingredients except for the cacao nibs for 1-3 minutes.  Add the cacao nibs and blend for 30 seconds more.


Difficulty: easy
Time: 4 minutes
Source: https://greenblender.com/smoothies/recipes/thin-mint