Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Breakfasts of Champions

This last weekend I made two fantastic breakfasts for myself. I love a good cooked breakfast more than just about any other meal. Omlette with goodies tucked inside, hashbrowns or homefries, bacon, sausage, ham, hollandaise sauce! I lived with a boyfriend for a while who loved cooking breakfast as much as I love eating it and we got in the habit of eating bacon, fried eggs and toast even on weekdays. Now that I'm cooking for one again I rarely do that, but I do make a point to cook a good breakfast meal at least once on the weekends. Even better is going out for breakfast! I have heard that going out to breakfast is a real Portland thing and that means I'm a real Portland girl. I love breakfasts.

The first breakfast of the weekend was a puffy omlette with wild mushrooms. A friend from work gifted me some wild mushrooms that her friend had collected. Some were unquestionably morels and I happily sauteed them up but I wasn't sure what the other was. It might have been a king bolete but as I continued looking at it and googling like a mad woman I decided that I didn't really want to eat it. It was a little past it's prime, and mushrooms are just one of those things. Oh well, the morels were fantastic.

I read about puffy omlettes on this fantastic blog I found last week called Beyond Salmon. The author talks about her dilema in teaching a cooking class focused on eggs. She wanted to use authentic french methods to cook an omlette but it turns out no one likes flat, plain french omlettes. So she asked her mom how to make a fluffy omlette. Turns out the secret is a blender. I used her method, with some dill added to the eggs and the musrhooms and Irish cheddar inside. It was fantastic!

Mushroom and Dill Puflette

1/3 cup whole milk
2 1/2 tsp unbleached flour
2 large eggs
1/4 tsp salt
A few grinds of black pepper
A pinch of dried dill
Fat for the pan - a mix of butter and oil or butter and goose fat
2-3 Tbs of sauteed wild mushrooms and onions

  • Combine the eggs, milk, flour, salt, pepper and dill in a blender and blend until well combined. The original recipe calls for blending for 2 minutes, I didn't blend for anywhere near that long.
  • Preheat the broiler and set a a 6 inch cast iron skillet (recipe called for a 7-8 inch nonstick skillet). Add your cooking fat and let it heat until the butter has melted and the foam subsided. I used a goodly amount, at least a tablespoon total because I was worried about the eggs sticking but if you have a well seasoned pan you just need a thin coating.
  • When the foam subsides in the butter add the egg mixture into the skillet, cover the pan and cook for 45 seconds (maybe a full minute for the 6 inch pan) or until the eggs look set around the edges but completely liquid in the center.
  • Uncover and place the skillet 2-4 inches away from the broiler element until the mixture is puffy and golden on top, 60-90 seconds or until it is puffy and golden on top.
  • Add the filling, slide the omlette onto a plate and fold in half. The original recipe calls to "Dot with a sliver of butter, spreading it over the top of the omelette as it melts." How wonderful!

The next day for breakfast I just had simple scrambled eggs but accompanied them with a red flannel hash. Red flannel hash is a New England special of pan fried potatoes and beets with or without salty meat like corned beef or bacon. Mine had no meat but did have onion and lots of black pepper. This was really out of control good. Way, way better than I was expecting.

Red Flannel Hash

1 baseball sized beet, peeled and diced to 1/8 inch dice
2 baseball sized yellow potatoes, washed and shredded on a box grater
1/2 onion, sliced thin
salt, pepper
goose fat, lard or coconut oil for the pan

  • Melt the fat in a 12 inch cast iron skillet over medium heat and add the onions and beets. Lightly salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the beets are tender.
  • Add the potatoes, more salt and generous amounts of pepper. Toss and stir until well incorporated with the beets and then smoosh the mass into the pan. Continue cooking over medium heat, stirring, scraping and turning occasionally, until the potatoes are cooked through and starting to get a bit crispy, about 20 minutes. Taste for salt and pepper and serve alongside scrambled eggs or topped with a poached egg.
Breakfast really is the most important meal of the day. Making sure that it is full of good fats and plenty of protein means you don't get hungry early in the day. A good breakfast keeps you productive and healthy AND happy. What do you like to eat for breakfast? .

This post is part of the Real Food Wednesday Blog Carnival. Check out what other folks are eating for breakfast, lunch and dinner over there!


  1. Oh, the beet potato hash sounds like my kind of dish. Thanks for this great idea :)

  2. Alyss - you are fabulous. I appreciate the way you cook so much. :-)

  3. Alyss - My goodness! Those dishes look fabulous! You are a gourmet! The puffy eggs with mushrooms have me salivating right now.