Frank’s Red Hot ruined my breakfast

I have the same thing for breakfast every day:  egg whites on toast with a banana and coffee.  Even though it never changes, I love my breakfast.  Maybe that’s WHY it never changes.

But sometimes I do wonder if it’s a little boring.  For a few weeks I added cheese to my egg whites and that was fun and all, but it wasn’t conducive to my postpartum weight loss plan.

Suddenly it clicked: I’ve heard from a lot of people that Frank’s Red Hot is great on everything.  I’ve also been told it’s phenomenal on eggs.  So it was decided: today I would try Frank’s Red Hot on my egg whites.  I like Frank’s Red Hot.  I like egg whites.  How could this go wrong?

…….

Yeah, it went wrong.  I shouldn’t have listened to that “lot of people” who said the sauce was great on everything.  I’ve also heard from a lot of people that sushi is delicious, but I hate sushi and you couldn’t pay me to eat it.

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Nope.

I didn’t care for Frank’s Red Hot on my eggs.  I still ate it because a) I’m breastfeeding and need the food, but b) I was too lazy to scramble another pan of eggs.  But I won’t be doing it again and I won’t be getting experimental with my bottle of Frank’s Red Hot.  If it’s good on everything, “everything” must mean just chicken.

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Spaghetti Squashed Dreams

A few times a year, I go through a spaghetti squash phase. Whenever this happens, I have to find a way to make lunches out of it because my husband hates squash of all forms. When I was recently hit by the spaghetti squash bug, I decided to mix things up a bit and try it for breakfast.

When I think of breakfast, the first thing (or even second or tenth thing) that comes to mind is not squash. But I found this post on Oh Sweet Mercy with instructions for squash browns—essentially, hash browns made out of spaghetti squash. I had to try it out.

The post emphasizes the importance of patting the squash dry prior to forming and frying the squash patties. I dropped a heap of squash onto a plate and sopped up as much liquid as I could with a few paper towels. I made the squash as dry as possible until the towels began sticking to it and tearing off in soggy shreds.

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I placed a perfectly formed, and lightly salted and peppered, squash brown patty in a preheated skillet. Several minutes later, I nervously flipped it over. To my surprise, it only partially fell apart! Using the spatula, I pushed the loose strands back into the patty and let it cook several minutes before flipping it again.

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This time, more than half of it came apart. Drat! I tried my damnedest to salvage the beauty of the squash brown, but to no avail. What I ended up with was simply a plate full of fried spaghetti squash that, I might add, never even truly browned on the outside.

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And sad fact: I don’t enjoy the taste of spaghetti squash at 7 a.m.

In the end, I reverted back to my usual breakfast and have been eating spaghetti squash for lunch every day this week. At least it wasn’t a complete waste…

What fun is cooking if you don’t at least try new things, anyhow?

My first omelet

When I was a child, I hated eggs.  Sometime during my teen years, I decided I liked scrambled eggs.  But I’ve remained admittedly closed-minded about eggs over easy, sunny-side up, poached, and soft boiled alike.  In fact, until this past weekend, I had never had an omelet.

I’ve been eating a lot of scrambled eggs as of late–plain scrambled eggs with a generous sprinkle of pepper.  How boring is that?  So, I did some reading and used this video as my guide and made my very first omelet.

I like mushrooms about as much as I like vomiting, so I chose to fill my omelet with sliced cherry tomatoes, minced garlic, spinach, and fresh Parmesan.  Since I have never cooked nor eaten an omelet, I felt like I was trying to tie the laces on a pair of sneakers after only ever wearing sandals.

Once my omelet was plated, I couldn’t believe my eyes.  I can be so CLUMSY with eggs, but my tiny little omelet looked beautiful!

I sat down with my omelet and a cup of coffee and readied myself for inevitable deliciousness.

Woah…got ahead of myself there.  Sad discovery:  I do not like omelets.

I want to say it was my selection of ingredients that made in unpalatable.  But the taste itself wasn’t bad.  It was that the way the eggs stick together gave me the impression I was eating yellow rubber instead of eggs.  I ate half of it, just to be a good sport, and then made myself a replacement breakfast of raspberry oatmeal.

I really wonder if playing with the ingredients and incorporating more flavors/seasonings would make me like omelets more.  Maybe I need to taste a well-prepared omelet at a restaurant before I know for sure.  But what I can say is that I made an omelet, and I did not care for it.

Sigh.  Culinary discovery can be a real bitch.

Burnt eggs and savory chicken

What you need to know prior to reading the following post:  I can cook scrambled eggs.  I’ve been doing it for years.  I could do it with my eyes closed.  Which is an interesting thing to say, considering my eyes were open when this fiasco occurred.

I’d also like to throw out there that I had not yet had any coffee to drink.  Just sayin’.

I don’t normally cook breakfast.  I just toast an English muffin and smother it in peanut butter.  But I’ve had a recent hankering for oatmeal and scrambled eggs, so that was what I opted for this morning.  I had turned on the burner to warm the frying pan while I readied my eggs.  It turns out that at 6 a.m., I have little patience for cooking.  In my zombified, coffeeless state of mind, I broke a golden rule:  I cracked an egg straight into the pan rather than into a bowl.  Of course, what happens?  The shell breaks and spills the gooey insides not into the pan, but on to the burner.  Immediately the air was filled with the nauseating odor of burnt egg.  In a panic, I grabbed (of all things) a paper towel to sop up the mess.  By then, the egg had begun to scramble on the burner while I nearly caught a paper towel on fire trying to wipe it up.

Meeeeeanwhile, I had moved the pan to the next burner over and turned the heat on.  Did it occur to me that the bottom of the pan was sticky with egg whites?  No, of course not.  I cracked a new egg into the pan and as I measured out my oatmeal, I heard a crackling and realized what I’d done.  I snatched up the pan to find the burner coated in crusty brown burnt egg.

Damn damn damn damn damn damn damn.

I grabbed a rag and vigorously wiped the bottom of the pan, which I then moved to a third burner.  Even then, I didn’t manage to clean the pan well enough because it still left some crusty egg residue on the burner.  Needless to say, my morning didn’t get off to a great start.

Fortunately, it was not a sign of things to come.  Come dinnertime, I do feel I redeemed myself.  About freaking time.

I made Pecan Parmesan Maple Crusted Chicken with a side of green beans and roasted sliced sweet potatoes.  The chicken was actually pretty simple–it was just breaded in a mixture of a beautiful combination of ingredients–but my goal tonight was to pull off the roasted sweet potatoes.  A couple of months ago, I tried to make homemade sweet potato fries and I failed miserably.  They were burnt on the ends and not cooked enough in the middle, and I’d used way too much oil so they were slippery and greasy-feeling.  Tonight I tried again, only I opted to simply slice them.  I also brushed them very lightly with oil–last time, I had dumped the fries and the oil into a bowl and tossed them (lesson learned).

The chicken was delectable and the sweet potatoes did turn out much better than they had in my first attempt.  A few of them still crisped along the edges because of uneven cuts, but I’m working on it.  I feel I’m making progress.  Except from now on, no more cracking eggs directly into the frying pan.

A proud moment for the bad chef.