Trends in Healthy Eating

Every time you pick up a cooking or food magazine, read a food blog or just wander around the internet you are going to see the “latest and  greatest” in healthy eating. Something new most every day. With that in mind, I thought I’d take a look at some of them.

TEFF

 

Ted is a grass first cultivated in Ethiopia. The grain is high in calcium, iron, fiber and protein. It has a mild, sweet and nutty taste. And…it is naturally gluten free.

BEET GREENS


Tired of kale? Aren’t we all??? Try beet greens instead. They are rich in Vitamin A and can be used in any recipe that calls for spinach, kale or collard greens. A quick saute of beet greens makes a great side dish in a hurry.

AMARANTH

 

Amaranth is a grain that is high in iron and zinc, making it a great choice for vegetarians. It is also high in protein and also rich in calcium and magnesium. Also, it is gluten free.  This is another ancient grain. It has been cultivated in Central America for 5000-8000 years.

COCONUT FLOUR

Coconut flour, just one of the many uses for the ubiquitous coconut, has 5 grams of fiber for every 2 tablespoons of flour and it is gluten free. I t also offers help for diabetics. By adding coconut flour to baked goods you can lower the glycemic index, making it a boon to diabetics.

 

KEFIR

Kefir is a fermented dairy product. Think drinkable yogurt. It is packed with beneficial probiotics and 8 ounces of Kefir provides a whopping 29% of your daily calcium!

ROOIBOS TEA

 

Rooibos tea is a red-colored herbal tea made from the leaves of the rooibos bush. It can lower triglycerides and LDL cholesterol and raise HDL cholesterol., making it a real champ among the food trends.

GOLDEN BERRIES

Golden berries, also known as the Peruvian groundcherry, resembles a golden raisin when dried. It contains linoleic and oleic acids, which are two essential fatty acids that aid in insulin sensitivity and fat oxidation. They are high in protein, Vitamin A and antioxidants; truly making them a superfood!

SPIRALIZER

 

 

And now for something fun! Spiralizers are an inexpensive tool that turns fresh vegetables into faux noodles. It creates volume out of a thin air – one carrot can turn out cups of ribbons. The most commonly spiralized fruits and vegetables are apples, beets, broccoli, butternut squash, cabbage, carrots, celeriac, chayote, cucumber, daikon radish, jicama, kohlrabi, onion, parsnip, rutabaga, sweet potatoes, taro root, white potatoes and zucchini.

 

Cocoa Powder as a Super Food!

Did you know that cocoa powder has more antioxidants than blueberries?  Really!

Chocolate products have a higher total flavanol content on a per weight basis than many other plant-based foods and beverages, such as apples and red wine. Studies show that flavanols and other flavonoid components in chocolate are rapidly absorbed in humans in a dose-dependent manner. The potential health effects of flavanols in certain chocolates are seen in a variety of functions, including antioxidant properties, reductions in platelet activity (Rein et al, 2000), modulation of eicosanoid (hormone-like substances that play a role in inflammation processes and platelet activity) synthesis, and regulation of immune response. Cocoa contains high concentrations of polyphenols — about 8 per cent by weight in the raw beans. Cocoa powder provides a higher concentration of polyphenols than milk or dark chocolate (Chocolate Manufacturers Asociation).

Studies show that cocoa powder, dark chocolate and milk chocolate have higher Oxygen Radical Absorption Capacity (ORAC) values than many common foods, such as prunes and blueberries. (ORAC values measure how powerful an antioxidant a substance is.) An antioxidant is a substance that inhibits oxidation or reactions promoted by oxygen and peroxides, and that include many held to protect the living body from the deleterious effects of free radicals.

Dark chocolate has more than 13,000 ORAC units and milk chocolate has about 6,700, according to the Chocolate Manufacturers Association. Unsweetened powdered cocoa starts out with almost twice as much antioxidants as dark chocolate, but when it’s diluted with water or milk and sugar to make hot chocolate, the flavonoid total per serving plummets to about half that in milk chocolate.

In different terms, a 40-gram serving of milk chocolate contains about 400 milligrams of antioxidants.

The incorporation of dark chocolate and cocoa powder in a diet that is rich in other food sources ofantioxidants- such as fruit, vegetables and rooibos tea, results in a high antioxidant intake and may consequently reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease.

Consumption of flavonoid-rich cocoa and chocolate can result in increased plasma antioxidant activity in healthy human adults.

Types of Chocolate via @DCHealthyBites

What a wonderful way to start a Monday! Eat more chocolate!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Rainy Weekend = Baking!!

The weather forecast for this weekend contains rain…lots and lots of rain. 100% chance on Sunday. Sounds to be like I’ll be stuck indoors, so it seems to me that it would be reasonable, not to mention fragrant, to begin some holiday baking.

So…what to bake? First off I have a bunch of stale glazed donuts. These are destined to become donut bread pudding. The only dilemma I’m facing right now is what kind of dried fruit to use. I’m leaning toward craisins and maybe figs. Seems very festive to me. And, after much research I have learned that bread pudding freezes quite well so long as you don’t sauce it before freezing. Make the sauce and freeze it separately, or, in the alternative, don’t make the sauce until you are ready to thaw, heat and serve.

When I was a child my favorite home-baked cookie was a molasses cookie. I haven’t made those in forever and this weekend is the time! When baking they fill the house with the scents of molasses, ginger and sugar. Yummmmm!

Mmm! Bite into classic soft, melt-in-your-mouth molasses cookies for a yummy bit of nostalgia.

 MOLASSES COOKIES

Ingredients

1 cup packed brown sugar
3/4 cup shortening
1/4 cup molasses
1 egg
2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking soda
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
1/4 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons granulated sugar

Directions

  • 1 Heat oven to 325°F. In large bowl, beat brown sugar, shortening, molasses and egg with electric mixer on medium speed, or mix with spoon. Stir in remaining ingredients except granulated sugar.
  • 2 Shape dough by rounded tablespoonfuls into 1 1/2-inch balls. Dip tops into granulated sugar. On ungreased cookie sheet, place balls, sugared sides up, about 2 inches apart.
  • 3 Bake 13 to 16 minutes or just until set and cookies appear dry. Immediately remove from cookie sheet to cooling rack.

Soft Molasses Cookies

Another all-time favorite was the Post Toastie Cookies.

Wikipedia tells me:

Post Toasties is an early American breakfast cereal that is made by Post Foods. It was named for its originator, C. W. Post. It was the Post version of corn flakes, popularized by Kellogg’s.

Post Toasties were originally sold as Elijah‘s Manna (c. 1904) until criticism from religious groups (and consequent loss of sales) led to a change of name 1908.

Post Toasties was temporarily discontinued in April 2006 but re-introduced in early 2010.

If you can’t find Post Toasties and good corn flake will do for this recipe.

POST TOASTIE COOKIES (CORN FLAKES)
1 c. sugar
2 sticks butter
1 tsp. soda
1 tsp. cream of tartar
1 1/2 tsp. vanilla
1 1/2 c. flour
2 c. Post Toasties
Cream butter and sugar, add flour, soda, vanilla and cream of tartar. Crush Post Toasties and add to mixture. Roll in ball – bake 10-12 minutes at 350 degrees. No need to flatten.

Happy baking and let me know what you are baking up in your kitchens as the weather gets nasty and thoughts turn to the holidays!

What Is HyperKalemia?

High potassium, also known as hyperkalemia, is a condition that occurs when your blood contains too much potassium. According to the Mayo Clinic, a normal range for potassium is between 3.6 and 5.2 millimoles per liter of blood or milliequivalents per liter (mEq/L).

The most common cause of high potassium is kidney failure. When your kidneys fail, they can’t perform their job of removing extra potassium from the body. This can lead to potassium build-up.

You can also raise the levels of potassium in your body above the normal range by overusing potassium supplements or by taking chemotherapy drugs.

Why, you ask, are we wondering about this??? 

A call this morning from the liver docs wanting an immediate trip to the Emergency Room is the short answer. Did we go? No. Why? After further consultation with the doctor’s office it became apparent that this anomoly could be controlled by medication. Yea! No trip to the ER!!!

More to the point, though, is what to do to keep this from happening again. Well, obviously, I am going to have to get more adept at determining how much potassium the foods my husband commonly eats contains. At the moment, I am thinking the culprit may be his favorite high-protein drink.

In addition to medical treatments, you can do to some things at home to help alleviate the symptoms of high potassium levels.

One of the easiest ways to naturally lower your potassium levels is to reduce the amount of potassium in your diet. This means limiting foods and supplements that are high in potassium. Some foods that are potassium-rich include:

  • bananas
  • nuts and beans
  • milk
  • apricots
  • salmon

Some salt substitutes are also high in potassium. When you buy a salt substitute, make sure to avoid any that list KCI (potassium chloride) as an ingredient. Foods that are high in additives—such as manufactured baked goods and sports drinks—are also usually high in potassium.

It may also help if you eat less red or processed meat. Try to drink more water and exercise regularly, too.

Flavor, flavor, flavor

One of the biggest problems in trying to get someone to eat enough to gain large amounts of weight after a major surgery is it requires them to eat a lot. And I do mean a whole lot! Realize that this person has not eaten at all in 4 months and not well for several months before that. So….how to get them to eat? The easiest answer is to give them VERY flavorful food. Stuff that looks, smells and tastes so good that they can’t resist it.

To that end I have been scouring the web and all my favorite food sites looking for such delicacies. I will share a few of the most recent ones I have found with you now.

http://www.epicurious.com/ingredients/14-ways-to-use-lemongrass-gallery/1

=================================================================================================

Garlic-Crusted Roast Rack of Lamb

INGREDIENTS

1 head of garlic, cloves peeled

1/4 cup rosemary leaves

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil

2 racks of lamb, frenched (2 pounds each)

Salt and freshly ground pepper

INSTRUCTIONS

In a mini food processor, combine the garlic, rosemary and olive oil and process until the garlic is finely chopped. Season the lamb racks with salt and pepper and rub the garlic-rosemary oil all over them. Set the racks fat side up on a large rimmed baking sheet and let stand for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 450°. Roast the lamb in the upper third of the oven for 15 minutes. Turn the racks and roast for 10 minutes longer for medium-rare meat. Transfer the racks to a carving board, stand them upright and let rest for 10 minutes.
Carve the racks in between the rib bones and transfer to plates. Serve right away.

=================================================================================================

Butter-Roasted Chicken with Soy-Garlic Glaze

Butter-Roasted Chicken with Soy-Garlic Glaze
TOTAL TIME: 1 HR 45 MIN SERVINGS: 4
INGREDIENTS

5 whole cloves

5 whole star anise

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

Kosher salt

Pepper

1/2 cup low-sodium soy sauce

2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar

One 2-inch piece of ginger, thinly sliced

3 garlic cloves, crushed

1 1/2 tablespoons sugar

One 3 1/2- to 4-pound chicken

2 tablespoons canola oil

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon boiling water

Toasted sesame oil, for brushing

Sliced cucumbers, sliced scallions and hoisin sauce, for serving

INSTRUCTIONS

Preheat the oven to 450°. Finely grind the cloves and 3 of the star anise pods in a spice grinder and transfer to a small bowl. Mix in the butter and season with salt and pepper.
In a small saucepan, combine the soy sauce, vinegar, ginger, garlic, sugar and the remaining 2 star anise pods. Cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until the glaze thickens, about 10 minutes.
Place the chicken on a rack set over a baking sheet. Beginning at the top of the breast, gently separate the chicken skin from the breast and thighs. Season the chicken cavity with salt and pepper. Rub the spiced butter under the skin, spreading it over the breast and thighs. Rub the canola oil all over the outside of the chicken and season with salt and pepper. Roast the chicken for 50 to 60 minutes, until golden brown and an instant-read thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the thigh registers 165°. Brush the chicken all over with the soy glaze and let rest for 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, using a wooden spoon, stir the flour and boiling water until a shaggy dough forms. Turn out the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth, about 5 minutes. Cut into 8 even pieces and roll into balls; keep covered with a damp paper towel. Using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll each piece of dough into an 1/8-inch-thick round.
Heat a griddle and brush it with sesame oil. Cook the pancakes, turning once, until golden in spots and cooked through, about 2 minutes. Transfer the pancakes to a plate and cover to keep warm.
Carve the chicken and serve with the warm pancakes, sliced cucumbers, sliced scallions and hoisin sauce.

================================================================================================

Now those should tempt anyone! Good eating everyone!

Foods to Help Naturally Detox your Liver

The liver is a vital organ of the human anatomy and performs multiple critical functions to keep the body pure of toxins and harmful substances. Without a healthy liver, a person cannot survive. Some of the more well-known functions include the following:

  • Production of bile.
  • Production of proteins for blood plasma.
  • Production of cholesterol and proteins to help carry fats through the body.
  • Store and release glucose.
  • Processing of hemoglobin for use of its iron content (the liver stores iron).
  • Conversion of harmful ammonia to urine.
  • Clearing the blood of drugs and toxins.
  • Regulating blood clotting.
  • Resisting infections by producing immune factors and removing bacteria from the bloodstream.
  • Clearance of bilirubin.

Unfortunately, everyday toxins like medications and alcohol can overload the liver, reducing its functioning ability and negatively impacting your health. Fortunately, there are many natural foods that detox the liver, and chances are you already have them in your kitchen.

1. Lemons

Commonly used in natural medicinal remedies, lemons are loaded with nutrients that are our bodies need, including fiber, vitamin C, vitamin B6, calcium, iron, magnesium, and potassium. They also contain bioflavonoids, which are antioxidants that help to cleanse the blood, detoxify the liver, and make the immune system strong. Drink the juice of half a lemon with some water daily to detox your liver.

2. Green Tea

Green tea is widely considered one the healthiest beverages you can drink, and nutrition experts agree. To make green tea, the leaves of the Camellia sinensis plant are used. These leaves are rich in catechins, a kind of antioxidant that studies show prevents fat accumulation and facilitates detoxification. Drink 4-5 cups of green tea daily to detox your liver. Keep in mind that it does contain caffeine.

3. Artichokes

Artichokes are another nutrient-dense food that cleanses the liver and purifies the blood. In fact, artichoke extracts have been prescribed by doctors for patients with liver problems since the 1800s. Plus, modern researchers have found that the phytonutrients cynarin and silymarin protect and regenerate liver cells and increase the production of bile. Artichoke can also help stabilize blood sugar.

4. Turmeric

Turmeric, one of the main components of curry powder, has long been used as an effective healing remedy. The spice’s anti-inflammatory properties and health-boosting nutrients work together to improve liver function (among other things), and the curcumin in turmeric is a potent phytochemical that stimulates bile production. Bile is used by the liver to rid the body of toxins and restore liver cells.

5. Avocados

Avocados are delicious. They are also nutrient-rich and help the body to produce glutathione (aka the mother of all antioxidants), which the body needs for liver detoxification and regeneration. If you’re worried about the high fat content, don’t, as avos contain monounsaturated fats. These are healthy fats that in moderation actually help reduce bad cholesterol and lower your risk of heart disease.

6. Onions

Onions are underrated. Not only do they add flavor and aroma to a wide range of dishes, but they also provide a long list of vital minerals and vitamins that protect against harmful free radicals. Additionally, they contain sulfur, a chemical compound that opens up the liver’s sulfation pathways and enables the body to release accumulated toxins. Red onions are best for detoxing the liver.

7. Cabbage

Cabbage is a cruciferous vegetable that is high in sulfur and provides vitamins K, C, folate, and Omega-3 fatty acids. Due to its high glucosinolate and chlorophyll content, cabbage activates important detoxifying enzymes and strengthens the liver. Generally, green cabbage is best (especially raw and organic), but any type of cabbage is good for detoxing the liver and will promote health.

Thanks to ReinventingAging.org for help with this compendium!

How healthy is your brain?

The research is clear: What you eat has a big impact on your brain. In fact, the right foods — and combinations of foods — can enhance memory, build new brain cells and even help ward off Alzheimer’s.Scientists are increasingly examining whole food groups — and diets — to determine which ones contribute to better cognition and which seem to hinder it. They’ve found that certain eating plans — including the Mediterranean diet, the DASH (Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension) diet and a hybrid of the two, dubbed the MIND diet — can help stave off cognitive decline and protect the brain against disease. The MIND diet, developed by researchers at Rush University in Chicago, slashed the risk of developing Alzheimer’s by as much as 53 percent. (MIND stands for Mediterranean-DASH Intervention for Neurodegenerative Delay.) Even those who followed the diet moderately had a 35 percent lower risk of Alzheimer’s.

Why the MIND advantage? Like the Mediterranean and DASH diets, the MIND diet emphasizes fish, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, beans and a daily glass of wine. But MIND goes one step further, specifying brain-boosting produce such as berries and leafy greens. According to study author Martha Clare Morris, professor of nutritional epidemiology at Rush, people who ate one to two servings of green leafy vegetables a day were cognitively 11 years younger than those who ate fewer greens. Blueberries may have the best cognitive perks.

“The common denominator in all three diets is a plant-based eating pattern that is low in saturated and trans fats and high in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats,” says Morris — and experts agree fat composition is a key player in cognition.

A recent Spanish study published in JAMA Internal Medicine found that supplementing the already brain-healthy Mediterranean diet with additional servings of olive oil and nuts — both of which boast inflammation-fighting unsaturated fats — enhances memory and information processing. On the flip side, a study published in PLOS One earlier this year linked higher trans fat intake with poorer performance on memory tests.

“Follow the Mediterranean or the MIND diets and your mind will be sharper in six months — and less susceptible to Alzheimer’s disease decades later,” agrees Majid Fotuhi, M.D., medical director of NeuroGrow Brain Fitness Center and affiliate staff at Johns Hopkins Medicine in Baltimore. What makes these diets so powerful? Key foods within them have different brain-boosting benefits, Fotuhi says. Emphasize even a few of these and your brain will thank you for years to come.

1. Olive oil, green tea and leafy greens (broccoli, spinach and kale)

Each of these antioxidant superfoods helps fight inflammation. And while inflammation is the body’s natural response to injury, uncontrolled inflammation over time can damage the brain. Intervene with these anti-inflammatory foods before neurons die, and you may be able to restore normal brain function, says Paula C. Bickford, professor of neurosurgery and brain repair at the University of South Florida.

2. Beets, tomatoes and avocados

These three darkly-hued foods help ensure that your brain receives the blood it needs to stay sharp. Studies suggest increased blood flow to the brain promotes neuron growth in the hippocampus, the area of the brain associated with learning and memory.

3. Nuts (especially walnuts), curcumin and pomegranates

These foods work deep in the brain to fight amyloid plaques. While amyloid is required for brain cells to communicate, when it accumulates several thousand times beyond normal levels, it forms plaques. These plaques kill neurons while creating inflammation, which kills even more neurons.

4. Fish, blueberries, grapes, coffee and dark chocolate

These nutrient powerhouses have been shown to increase the level of brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), a protein that supports the growth of new neurons. “It’s like Miracle-Gro for the brain,” says Fotuhi. “Stimulating the release of BDNF not only reverses the effects of aging, but also triggers the brain to make more neurons.”

High-Protein Lunches For All-Day Energy

Because protein takes longer to digest than carbs and sugars, your blood sugar stays more even, giving you fewer mood dips and higher energy levels. The Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) is 46 grams of protein for women over age 19, and 56 grams of protein for men.

Whether you’re packing your own lunch to take to work or preparing midday meals for your kids, a high-protein diet combined with regular exercise is an effective way to lose weight, curb hunger and improve blood-triglyceride levels.

To build muscle, you need to lift—not just weights, but your fork to your mouth for extended reps. And not just cherry pie or fast food, either, but meals that provide your body the right macronutrient ratio for size and strength. Only then will you see the progress you desire.

Bean Salad With Bacon and Chives

INGREDIENTS

  1. slices bacon
  2. 15.5-ounce cans cannellini beans, rinsed
  3. tablespoons apple cider vinegar
  4. tablespoons olive oil
  5. tablespoons whole-grain mustard
  6. kosher salt and black pepper
  7. tablespoons chopped fresh chives

    DIRECTIONS

    Cook the bacon in a large skillet over medium heat until crisp, 12 to 15 minutes; crumble, cover, and set aside at room temperature. Toss together the beans, vinegar, oil, and mustard and season with ½ teaspoon each salt and pepper. Refrigerate for up to 8 hours. Just before serving, toss with the chives and bacon.

TUNA WRAP

Quick and easy, this one is great to take in the morning when you’re in a rush and headed back to work at the start of the week.

Ingredients
Directions
  1. Mix together the tuna with mayonnaise, onions, and the pickle.
  2. Spread over a whole wheat small tortilla wrap and then fill with the chopped vegetables of your preference (mushrooms, peppers, tomatoes, etc).
  3. Roll up and serve.
  4. Have an apple smeared with peanut butter afterward for something sweet and to provide some healthy fats to slow down the digestion of this meal.

High Protein Chicken Caesar Wraps Recipe

High Protein Chicken Caeser Wraps

  • 3 oz. Baked Chicken Breasts
  • 1/2 Medium Chopped Cucumber
  • 2 oz. Non-Fat Plain Green Yogurt
  • 1 tsp Dry Mustard Powder
  • 1 tsp Anchovy Paste
  • 1 clove Garlic
  • 2 Whole Wheat Flour Tortillas
  • 1 cup Hearts Of Romaine Lettuce

Combine yogurt, mustard, 1 clove of cooked garlic and anchovy paste. Toss and coat romaine lettuce and cucumbers together with dressing. Split coated greens into 2 portions and place into tortillas, add ~1.5 oz. chicken per tortilla. Wrap up and enjoy.  This will provide 41 grams of protein per serving!

Snack time!

Do you need a snack that will help improve muscle tone, keep energy levels steady and boost your metabolism? Then it’s time you introduce high-protein snacks into your diet.
Ants on a Log

Make snack time fun for kids and adults with these ants on a log. Cashew butter is loaded with protein while celery is low in calories — for a little extra sweetness, swap in some dark chocolate chips for raisins!

  

Black Bean Hummus with lime and chili

Up the ante on your normal hummus recipe with this black bean-based version. This spicy version is a welcome change from the usual chickpea-based recipes — it’s so easy to whip up, you’ll never buy hummus at the store again. Spread it on sprouted grain bread, use as a dressing in your favorite sandwich or dip veggies into it. No matter how you eat it, it’ll become one of your favorite protein snacks.

  

Roasted Chickpeas

Makes about 1 cup

Ingredients:

1 can chickpeas

1 teaspoon olive oil

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

1/2 teaspoon dried basil

1 teaspoon Nutritional Yeast (or Parmesan)

1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Directions:

1. Drain and rinse the chickpeas, then pat them dry.

2. In a small mixing bowl, combine the chickpeas, oil, and seasonings. Mix until everything is evenly coated. Pour the chickpeas onto a baking pan covered in aluminum foil and shake gently until the chickpeas are in one layer.

3. Roast at 450 for 10-15 minutes (I did 10 in my toaster oven, 15 would be for a regular oven, where the heat source is further away), toss, and roast for another 10-15 minutes until golden and beginning to brown. 

4. Turn off the oven, crack it open, and let the chickpeas cool in there for another 20 minutes (this will keep them even crispier!). Serve room temperature as a snack or toss into a salad.

  
These are just a few easy recipes. The options are limitless with a little imagination! Don’t forget nuts of all kinds, cheeses, Greek yogurt and nut butters. Be creative and you will find it very easy to get more protein in your diet.

Breakfast – The most important meal of the day!

We have never been much for eating breakfast in out house, except for the occasional special breakfast at holidays or when we have company. For someone recovering from major surgery and trying to gain weight, breakfast turns out to be very important. To that end, I have been actively searching for new and interesting breakfast recipes. Here are a couple that look (and taste) really special!

 

Omelette Casserole with Ham and Gruyere

ingredients

  • 8 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 2 tablespoons half-and-half
  • 1 cup shredded Gruyere, divided
  • 1 cup diced ham (pre-cooked)
  • 1/4 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh chives (or parsley)

directions

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly grease a 9- or 10-inch casserole dish with nonstick spray.

Whisk the eggs with the milk and half-and-half until smooth.

Add ham, salt, pepper and half of the cheese. Stir to incorporate.

Pour into the prepared baking dish and top with remaining cheese.

Bake for 30 minutes, or until eggs are just set and golden in color.

Remove from oven and sprinkle with chives. Omelette with deflate slightly as it cools.

Omelette Casserole with Ham and Gruyere

Oven-Poached Eggs in Spinach Nests

Ingredients

Spinach Nests:
Cooking spray
3 eggs
1/2cup all-purpose flour
1pound small-curd cottage cheese
4 (10-ounce) boxes frozen chopped spinach, thawed and well-drained
1/2teaspoon salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Eggs:
8large eggs
1cup shredded Swiss or Parmesan cheese
4 English muffins, split and toasted
1/2cup slivered red bell pepper, optional
1/2cup slivered onion, optional

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 350F. Coat a 13-by-9-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
  2. To prepare the spinach nests, combine eggs, flour and cottage cheese; whisk well. Add spinach, salt and pepper; stir well. (This can be done up to 2 days ahead). Press mixture into prepared dish. Make 8 indentations with the back of a spoon (this is where the eggs will later be placed). Bake 25 minutes.
  3. Remove from oven and using a spoon, hollow the nests out even more deeply. Break an egg into each indentation. Bake 15 minutes or until whites are set. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake 1 minute.
  4. Place 1 egg and spinach nest on English muffin half. Garnish with slivered red pepper and onion, if desired.         Oven-Poached-Eggs-Spinach-Brunch-Relish