I was outside looking around my garden this morning. The cubanelle pepper plant I bought turns out its not. Its producing little bell peppers. I don’t usually like them very much from the grocery store. Turns out, fresh off the vine, the intense flavor is very nice indeed. I ate a few bits while preparing some fritattas for breakfast this week.
My breakfast, as I tend to pack a breakfast and a lunch in the mornings before work, is usually a couple of pieces of bacon I cooked on the weekend, two eggs, some cheese (this week it was smoked gouda), and a big slice of sourdough bread cut in half so its sandwich sized. A little hot water in one of those paper coffee cups, a minute and 20 seconds in the microwave for the egg and 20 seconds for the cheese and bacon, and bread in the toaster, and voila, breakfast sandwich which earns lots of envious pointy eyeballs as I walk back to my desk.
Since work is getting more hectic, and preparing for my show on Sept 21 is taking up a lot of my time, I’ve had to back off of my gym schedule a bit. This also means I need to ease up a bit on the grease-wiches, and add in a few more vegetables to my diet.
In a sautee pan with a bit of butter and olive oil, I put in some Madras Curry seasoning once the oil started to bubble a bit. Once the butter and oil started to color, I added the fresh bell pepper, about a quarter cup of red pepper, a quarter cup of onion, a quarter cup of celery, and a quarter cup of carrots, and one russet potato, all diced. I let that sweat down a bit.
With my mortar and pestle, I took a pinch of salt and a few of the fresh herbs from the garden (lavender, sage, thyme, oregano, and tarragon), and bashed them into a paste, then added a little olive oil and two little cloves of garlic, diced first, then added and beaten down as well. Once the veggies have sauteed down a bit and started to do a bit of sticking to the pan, I poured in the herb paste and stirred it into the vegetables. I removed the pan from the heat.
In a bowl, I cracked three eggs and added about a quarter cup of heavy cream and beat them together with a whisk. I grated about a quarter cup of gouda, and a quarter cup of manchego cheese. In ramekins and a mini-cast iron skillet, I spooned in the vegetables, poured in the egg and cream, sprinkled the cheese. and then went back to the fridge for the last of the stash of this week’s bacon. I chopped it up and sprinkled a bit on each ramekin, then a little sprinkle of cayenne pepper across the top to warm things up.
I placed the ramekins and the cast iron skillet on a sheet pan and put them in a preheated 425 degree oven for about 50-55 minutes. I’m eating the skillet one right now with some toasted whole wheat pita wedges.
Fresh ingredients, when you can get them, really do make a huge difference to the flavors of a dish.