Don’t Egg Me On: Breakfast Edition

Recently, I asked one of my best friends what my food “spirit animal” would be.  She said she could think of two different answers: cookies or eggs.  I usually eat eggs for a protein filled breakfast to power me throughout the day.  And I have the biggest sweet tooth ever.  If I make homemade cookies I can easily eat 10 in one sitting.  It’s a gift.

But this post is about the former food spirit animal, eggs.  Over the summer I have had three different amazing breakfasts that you should try!

Uncommon Grounds 

IMG_4846 copy.jpg

Uncommon Grounds is a cute, small restaurant located in Watertown, MA.  It has a diner feel, but the menu has more variety, and more fresh produce.  This was their Salmon Avocado Toast, and it was a daily special.  Toasted bread was topped with greens, avocado, tomatoes, smoked salmon, and a poached egg.  Talk about a beautiful plate!  I also ordered a side of fruit salad instead of the home fries.  While I love eggs, avocado, and smoked salmon separately, I think combining all three was a little overwhelming.  Each of those ingredients are rich, so next time I’ll order their plain Avocado Toast.

The Friendly Toast 

IMG_4871.JPG

This is the Greek Scramble at The Friendly Toast with delicious cinnamon raisin bread, and a side of fresh fruit.  The scramble has tomatoes, feta cheese, kalamata olives, baby spinach and black pepper.  The bread was sliced thick and buttered.  Just look at the cinnamon swirl, it is huge!  And the fruit salad was a step up then your standard melon mix.  It had blueberries, strawberries, and blackberries too.  I also loved the Friendly Toast for its eclectic ambiance.  I went to the Back Bay location on a Tuesday night, and trivia was going on for diners to participate in.  The menu has funny names for the dishes and the decor is bright and funky.

The Wayfarer 

IMG_4776

I think this is my favorite place to go for breakfast.

A. Because it is in Maine, more specifically Cape Porpoise, which is such a beautiful and hidden spot.

B. Because I grew up coming here as a child.  One of the waitresses Bert wore sunny side up egg earrings when I was younger, which I always got a kick out of… and she still does today!

C. Because the food and atmosphere makes you feel like you are eating at home.

This is the veggie omelet with tomatoes, broccoli, mushrooms, avocado, and goat cheese.  A side of fruit salad and cinnamon raisin toast with strawberry jam.

The Wayfarer is small enough that it feels cozy, like a real Maine breakfast place should.  But it was renovated a few years ago, so the interior is beautifully furnished.  As a friendly warning, it gets VERY busy.  So if you bring a large family, arrive early!

 

Don’t Be Blue Salad: Easy Meal Edition

This salad is full with nutrient dense foods, such as spinach, avocado, blueberries, extra virgin olive oil, and walnuts.  It is very easy to whip together and would be a great lunch to bring to work.  The creamy avocado is a nice contrast to the crunchy walnuts.  The blueberries add sweetness.  Next time I will add feta for its salty flavor, I just didn’t have it this time!

IMG_5275.JPG

Place fresh spinach in a bowl.  Add blueberries, sliced avocado, and walnuts.  Drizzle extra virgin olive oil and balsamic vinegar on top.

Mix and enjoy!

I Love Olives: Easy Meal Edition

As I said earlier this summer, I worked far away from my home.  So I relied on quick’n easy meals filled with healthy ingredients.  Olives became one of my favorite ingredients to use because I love salty food 🙂

Green Machine Salad

IMG_4625

Place a few handfuls of fresh spinach in a bowl.  Add pitted green olives, Samira’s hummus, a handful of Biena’s Chickpea Snacks, and an avocado.

Quinoa Spinach Salad

IMG_5220.JPG

Cook around 1/4 cup of tri-colored quinoa according to the instructions on the bag.

Place spinach in a bowl.  Add quinoa, pitted kalamata olives and crumbled feta.  Drizzle with olive oil and balsamic vinegar.

Greek Power Bowl

IMG_5066.JPG

Place spinach in a bowl.  Add kalamata olives, Samira’s hummus and spicy grape leaves, and Watusee Chickpeatos.

Enjoy!

 

Dancing Queen: Quinoa Power Bowl

This queen-oa power bowl will give you all of the energy you need to be the queen of the dance floor!  Roasted chickpeas, tri-color quinoa, and fresh avocado are the three main ingredients of this dish, and it can be made in 30 minutes.

IMG_5234.JPG

First start with the roasted chickpeas.  Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.  Open and rinse a can of chickpeas.  Line a baking tray with parchment paper.  Place the chickpeas on the parchment paper.  Grind black pepper on top of the chickpeas.  Drizzle olive oil on the chickpeas and make sure they are thoroughly coated.  Roast for 30-35 minutes.

While the chickpeas are roasting, start the quinoa.  Rinse 1/2 cup quinoa in a small sieve.  Place in a small pot along with 1/2 cup water, plus a little extra splash of water.  Bring this to a fast simmer.  Then reduce to a low simmer and place a lid on top.  Cook for 17 minutes.

Place quinoa, roasted, chickpeas, and avocado in a bowl.  Mix throughly.  Add sea salt to taste.  Enjoy!

IMG_5235

Bagelsaurus

Screen Shot 2016-01-01 at 9.12.09 PMThis small bagel bakeshop in Cambridge churns out delectable bagels that blow all local competitors right out of the water.  What started out as a weekly pop up at Cutty’s, turned into its own establishment, which speaks well of the product and hard work of the owner, Mary Hyatt.  The bakeshop is open only until the bagels sell out, so I suggest going on the earlier side.

The bagels have a slight crackle on the outside that gives way to a chewy soft interior.  I choose the sea salt bagel, as advised by my older cousin, but then went a step further and ordered it as an eggspanola sandwich.  This added an over-medium egg, Maplebrook feta, pimenton aioli, parsley gremolata, and avocado to my bagel. The slight heat from the aioli was balanced by the creamy avocado, the feta added a nice briny note, and the sea salt from the bagel added crunch.  If I could start every morning with this sandwich I would!

I have yet to go back, but really want to try their cinnamon raisin as a “t-rex” sandwich, which has bacon, banana, honey, and house made almond butter… Sounds to die for.

Definitely check out Bagelsaurus and grab a few extra bagels to go for later in the week.

 

 

 

 

“Shrimp My Ride” Salad

One of these days I hope SweetGreen discovers my food blog and names a salad after one of my inspirations… that day has yet to come!  This salad is unique because the shrimp is marinated in an herb and salt mixture, Aglio Olio, that my cousin mailed to me from California.

Aglio Olio

Aglio Olio

She knows I am a big foodie and she usually mixes the seasoning with olive oil as a dip for bread.  I took the liberty of repurposing it and was met with success.

"Shrimp My Ride" Salad

“Shrimp My Ride” Salad

“Shrimp My Ride” Salad (for one)

6 shrimp washed and deveined

olive oil

Aglio Olio seasoning

half an avocado (or full if you’d rather just go for it)

half a yellow bell pepper (chopped)

carrot (chopped)

1/4 cup feta

handful sunflower seeds

6 Greek olives (pitted and chopped)

2 cups romaine lettuce

2 cups spinach

olive oil

balsamic vinegar

Place the shrimp in a bowl.  Pour olive oil on top to cover it.  Sprinkle on the Agli Olio salt and herb mixture to season the shrimp.

Grill the shrimp until each side is pink and cooked through.

Place spinach and lettuce at the bottom of a large bowl.  Cut the tails off of the shrimp.  Place everything on top of the greens.  Drizzle on balsamic vinegar and olive oil to dress the salad.  Dig in!

 

 

Smoked Salmon Avocado Sandwich

The recent warm weather has reminded me of brighter days and I can’t believe February is wrapping up.  Although March can be a tricky month, it usually passes by quickly, and then we are finally finished with winter!  This sandwich is a light delicious meal, perfect for lunch and/or dinner.  The pink and green colors shout spring to me and brighten up the plate.  I realize smoke salmon is either loved or despised, so feel free to substitute with a different protein if you aren’t feeling it.

unnamed

Smoked Salmon Avocado Sandwich (sorry for pretty relaxed proportions, you do you on this one!)

Toasted pumpernickel bread

Smoked Salmon

Capers

Spinach

Guacamole

Place the spinach on top of the toasted bread.  Then dollop on the guacamole.  Add the salmon and then sprinkle with capers.  I prefer this to be an open faced sandwich.  Enjoy the last week of February!

unnamed-1

Spinach Avocado Pasta

This pasta dish is so creamy, albeit much healthier when compared to a traditional alfredo.  I adapted the recipe from Teaspoon of Spice.  It takes less than an hour to pull together, so it is an ideal weeknight dinner.

IMG_2976

Spinach Avocado Pasta

  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • Half an onion, chopped
  • 8 cups spinach
  • 1/2 cup Greek yogurt
  • 3 avocados, skin and pits removed
  • juice of one lime
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup pasta water (or as much as needed to gain proper sauce consistency)
  • 1 cup Parmesan cheese
  • Red pepper flakes, optional
  • Toasted pine nuts and extra parmesan to sprinkle on top

In a large pot of boiling water cook pasta according to instructions.  Save 1 cup of the pasta water for the sauce before you drain it.

In a large skillet heat the onion, garlic, and olive oil over medium heat for one minute.  Add the spinach and cook until wilted, around 5 minutes.

In a blender, add the avocados, spinach mixture, yogurt, lime juice, salt, pepper, and puree.  Add the pasta water slowly in until it reaches the texture you want.

Mix the pasta with the sauce in a big bowl.  Add the cheese and red pepper flakes.  When serving, sprinkle on toasted pine-nuts and parmesan cheese.  Enjoy!

IMG_2975

Guacamole

I personally love anything that has avocado in it and this guacamole is one of my family’s favorite dips.  We use it with tortilla chips, chili, burritos, sandwiches, etc.  You can pull it together in a snap and everyone will love it!

IMG_2770

Guacamole (large bowl)

4 avocados

1 lime, juiced

2 large gloves of garlic, minced

handful of cilantro, chopped

heaping teaspoon of salt (more to taste depending on your preference)

Cut the avocados in half.  Scoop out the pit.  Scoop the avocado out of the skin.  Place in a medium sized bowl.  Add the lime juice, garlic, cilantro, and salt.  Using a knife, slice the avocado until it reaches the texture you desire. (You can also mash the mixture if you want it smoother, but I prefer having chunks of avocado).  Then mix with a spoon to make sure everything is incorporated.  Place in a bowl and serve it up with tortilla chips!

IMG_2771