Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Breakfast Egg Cups

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It's me!  Yes, I'm still around, and I haven't given up on the whole blogging thing yet.
(I will admit, I keep a much more personal blog that gets updated near daily, but it isn't in the least educational and not likely entertaining unless you know me.)


I had big plans for today.  It is a rainy summer day after a beautiful stretch of sunny, hot days.  We've been in the pool, we've been to the zoo, we've been to family parties, picnics, and BBQs.  My plan for today was to stay in loungewear and make a quiche.  Change the sensory bin.  Work on my ASL coloring book for V., and do nothing major.

I haven't given up on my dream just yet.

But today started at 4am for me, and just as I was getting sleepy, 5:30am for someone else.  Hello, daybreak.

I needed a plan for breakfast and I wasn't in the mood for all the same stand-bys.  That is when I remembered Egg Cups.

Made in a regular muffin tin, these are a great addition to any brunch or breakfast buffet.  I've made them for breakfast buffets at the schools I worked in, and if I can turn out 48 of these puppies in under 20 minutes before I've had my coffee, you know they are a win.

Made in an oversized tin, one is a great breakfast for most.  (Hubby eats two, I eat one overfilled one, and the baby eats one smaller one, and two are left over for his next breakfast.  Family math.)

The idea is simple.  You have a carb, meat, egg, veggie, and cheese in one compact muffin round.

Grab your oversized muffin tin.  Grease it lightly.

Preheat the oven to 425F.

Decide if you are a toast person, or just a bread person.  If you are a toast person, you'll need to make your toast/English muffin separately.  If not, put some bread in the bottom of each pan.  I cut rounds out of whole grain bread using a juice cup, and tore up the scraps to press into the bottom of some cups.  (The rounds look neater, but the scraps were tastier, in my opinion.) We've also put crushed tortillas in the bottom with one large piece poking up.  Breakfast nachos.

On top of the bread, add your veggie.  In my experience, the best are salsa, peppers (the pre-sliced frozen ones work great), artichoke hearts, or chopped spinach, well drained.  You won't be cooking this for long, so whatever you are using should be room-temp and ready to eat.  Steam veggies in the microwave if need be.
*If you did not use bread (because you are going to toast it) use your meat to line the pan.*

Next, pick a breakfast meat.  Either cut up some sausage links, tear up some ham, shred some leftover turkey or chicken, lightly fry some bacon and fit it in, cut up some leftover steak, use leftover tofu, or skip the meat. You can use deli meat if you like.  I'm all about repurposing leftovers.

Add some cheese to each cup.

Scramble one egg per muffin and pour into the cup, or crack an egg into each well, if you like sunny-side-up eggs.  (These don't make as "travel-friendly" of a breakfast, but are delicious.)

Lastly, sprinkle a little more cheese over the top.

Bake in the oven until the eggs are cooked, about 12 minutes.  (How cold your veggies and meat are will impact the time.  Watch them all carefully towards the end.

If you are going for toast, pop the toast in while these are cooking.

Some ideas:

Benedict 1: English muffin, toasted, with thin-sliced ham (lining the pan), spinach and sauteed onions, minced garlic, and a sunny-side up egg.

Benedict 2: English muffin, toasted, with lox, spinach, capers, and a sunny-side up egg.

Huevos Rancheros: Tortilla with ham or sausage, peppers, scrambled eggs with monterey jack cheese, topped with some tobasco and served with salsa.

Greek: pita bread with spinach, artichoke hearts, feta, and scrambled eggs.

Classic: Whole grain toast with bacon, potatoes (leftover roasted potatoes are awesome for this, and you only need one or two for the whole pan), and scrambled eggs.  Some ketchup, and Hubby is a happy man.

Hash: For leftover boiled dinner.  Use butter to grease the pan and heat the pan in the oven while you chop up some corned beef and, separately, the leftover veggies (cabbage, potatoes, carrots... yum...).  Add the corned beef to the hot tin, packing it down, then the veggies, and topped with a sunny-side-up egg.  Likewise, you could line the pan with a cabbage leaf for a prettier presentation and easier removal. Serve on a toasted English muffin.

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