When I considered the restaurant brunch options for Mother’s Day in my mom’s hometown I couldn’t think of any place nicer then her porch. Besides I know her likes and dislikes better than any chef and I love to cook!
We had a full day ahead of us, opening up the porch to ready it for summer, changing out storm windows for screens and getting the hoses out in the extensive yard.
So breakfast on Mother’s Day was not going to be an elaborate, leisurely affair but rather a quick, nourishing start to our busy day.
And lucky for everyone her garden chives are already up so I paired that with the “corn and tomatoes on the porch” leftovers from the night before to make tasty omelets!
So fresh and yummy – even if I do say so myself! and of course it’s never really too early for a decadent dessert made with early strawberries, warmed slightly and sweetened with just a touch of honey, served over the best vanilla ice cream! (crumbled chocolate brownies optional!)
I actually graduate tomorrow (yippee!) and I am looking forward to new and more frequent blog entries now that I can have my life back! Stay tuned….
If you have been reading along you already know my obsession with tomatoes.
If you don’t know already… I am obsessed.
So this past weekend when I was visiting my “tomato dealer” I just had to have some these beauties immeadiately.
And the fact that it was breakfast time didn’t stop me.
Such good looking late season fruit needs to be handled simply and since it was breakfast and I was planning on eggs, I simply sauteed them lightly with some dried basil and butter* and served over fried eggs on toast!
It was all so good that I had most of it eaten up before I remembered to take a picture!
If you love guacamole and you love bruschetta- why not create a “mash-up” of the two?!
That’s exactly what I did one night for dinner. I had a PERFECTLY ripe avocado (a rare find sometimes) which I “mashed up” (pun intended!) and mixed with a squirt or two of lime juice, salt, pepper and ground cumin. I spread that on some toasted Italian bread and topped it with sliced tomatoes. A light drizzle of olive oil and some more salt and pepper and there you have the ultimate “mash-up!”
(The only thing missing was some fresh torn basil on top, but I was too lazy to go out into the garden with a flash light and get it!)
Corn and tomatoes are one of my favorite parings and I have written about them before….here and here.
This time I paired them in a quiche. Easy and summer-y this quiche tastes like a fancy brunch dish and is so light that you feel almost like you are eating healthy! (never mind the eggs, cream and cheese in the mix!)
The key was the fresh corn – sweet and in season now – I carved it raw off the cob making sure to include all the “milk” into the bowl as well. I had never used a soft, fresh cheese like goat cheese before, in a quiche, but I had some already crumbled in the fridge and decided to throw it in. The fresh basil and cherry tomatoes cut in half rounded out this trifecta (or perhaps its a “superfecta?”) of ingredients. The moist goat cheese added a bit of luscious-ness to it.The quiche is rich but not heavy.
I just use a store-bought crust that I blind bake for 10-15 minutes so the crust will be crisp and not soggy. I also firmly believe that glass pie dishes get the best result with crust. For the liquids I simply start with 6 whole eggs and about a cup of dairy – milk cream or even half and half. I fill the cooled crust with the filling of the choice and carefully pour the liquid mix over it all. Be careful not to pour to fast as sometimes the liquid doesn’t get into the nooks and crannies as fast as it should and you can easily spill over the edges! S & p to taste.
Bake in a preheated 375 degree oven until set in middle. Cool a bit before slicing.
Somewhere in the middle of homespun and gourmet is where my simple, perfect supper is:
Grilled steak with juicy sliced fresh tomatoes (Big slices of “brandywine” variety are best but really any tomato works) and a simple potato salad, best enjoyed on a perfect New England summer evening, on the porch.
I am a card-carrying member of the “parrotheads” elite.
And if you think I raise and breed birds you would be wrong.
For those who don’t know a “parrothead” is a big time fan of Jimmy Buffett’s music. We even have our own wiki page here!
So after having attended over 6 shows and many related events over the years, you would think I would have the lyrics to one of his most famous songs, “Cheeseburger In Paradise” perfectly memorized. Well I do, but recently I cleared up some grammatical confusion.
See I thought he was saying ” …not zucchini fettuccine or bulgar wheat…” but what he was really saying was “not zucchini, fettuccine or bulgar wheat ”
Small difference (see comma marked in red above) but it means the difference between 3 food items ( Zucchini AND Fettuccine AND Bulgar Wheat) instead of two food items. (Zucchini Fettuccine AND Bulgar Wheat)
Phew! glad I cleared that up!
Actual “zucchini fettuccine” lightly sautéed in olive oil with fresh tomatoes, herbs, garlic,onions and a little feta cheese on top!
This year Mother’s Day also turned out to be the “season opener” for her deck. And nothing is better than an early evening supper on the porch of corn and tomatoes…
early hot-house tomatoes will have to do…
…And early season Florida corn
And of course I brought her “flowers” (the edible kind!)
The next morning we enjoyed last night’s leftovers in a whole new way…a savory breakfast bread pudding!
I simply cubed up about 8 slices of good quality bread ( something alike a “pullman loaf” but really anything you have would do) and let them get all toasty and dry in a low oven for a few minutes. I piled them into a sprayed oven-proof dish and threw in all the rest of the leftover corn and tomatoes. I added some generous dashes of dried oregano, a couple good pinches of garlic powder, salt and pepper to taste, some pats of butter ( maybe like 4) and about 3 ounces of sharp cheddar. (Some grated and some chunked.) Now the wet stuff: whisk 6 large eggs with about 2 cups whole milk and make sure to use the back of your knife down the corn cobs and get all that delicious “milk” hiding in the cobs. Pour it all over the top of everything.
all the goodies piled in the dish…
…the wet stuff poured on top.
Into a preheated 375 degree oven – covered tight with foil- for about 20-25 mins. No peeking under the foil. Remove the cover when the liquid is firm and edges just starting to take on some brown. (this is nice and easy to see in a glass baking dish!) Let it baked uncovered 8-10 mins longer just to dry out the top a bit as needed. Remove from the oven and let it cool a bit, just like lasagna, this is better served warm and not piping hot!
breakfast is served…
…best “leftovers” ever!
Read about my other “corn and tomato” adventures here!