Breakfast Hash with Baked Eggs

I’d shamelessly fed Mark an omelette and rice for dinner on a weeknight this week. I don’t feel that bad about it though since we’ve both been pretty busy over the past couple of days and it’s gotten to the point where I’m just too tired to even think about pulling off an elaborate meal for two people.

I thought I did a pretty good job with the omelette or egg foo yong, as Americans know it. It was filled with healthy ground chicken, peppers and onions, browned on both sides until it was crisp but still fluffy and covered with a silky brown gravy. I was more than content by having that and a mandatory episode of House of Cards before succumbing to sleep.

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I anticipate the coming weeks to be busier since I’ve finally returned to the workforce. I’m excited because it’s so much better than just sitting at home aimlessly. I’m a little worried about how we’re going to make time for each other though since I’ve been so used to spending almost every night with Mark. But I think we’ll adapt and manage.

Weekends are inevitably our time. Mark cannot sleep in unless he really tried to so at about 7:30 or 8 I will feel him waking up and peering over to see if I’m on the same page. Usually I am and then he takes the chance to offer to make breakfast for the both of us.

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I suppose he had woken up with an appetite because he wanted a big breakfast. I suggested a breakfast hash, filled with all the vegetables, carbs and proteins that he liked. He did not hesitate on the idea because before I knew it, he was already dressed and halfway down the stairs while I lazily tried to mobilize my body on an early weekend morning.

I joined him in the kitchen where he already the carton of eggs in one hand and a skillet in another. I offered to do the prep work and brew the coffee while he sautés. We laugh, talk and poke fun at each other in the kitchen all morning while making breakfast and I find myself counting down the days of the week until I find myself in moments like that again.

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Breakfast Hash with Baked Eggs 

Ingredients:
3 medium Russet potatoes, diced
1/2 green pepper, diced
1/2 onion, diced
2 cups fresh kale or spinach
1/2 pound Italian sausage or ground beef (we used beef and seasoned it with cumin, paprika, salt and pepper)
4 eggs
Salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In a skillet, brown meat and drain grease. Transfer to bowl. Add 1 tbsp butter to pan and cook onions and pepper until soft. Add potatoes and cook until they are half done. Throw in kale and cook until they turn deep green and are fully wilted.

Add cooked meat and mix until well-combined. Transfer mixture to a baking dish. Form 4 wells or holes within the mixture and crack and egg into each hole. Sprinkle with more pepper on each egg and bake in oven for about 10 minutes until egg is cooked but yolk is still runny and potatoes are tender.

Serve with favorite choice of hot sauce and bread if desired.

Beef Stew with Red Wine // Homemade Crusty Bread

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My house is so silent during the day. Sometimes, like today, it is comforting seeing as it is cold and dreary outside once again, but other times, it can get pretty lonely.

In the past couple of months of change and adaptation, I think I’ve learned how to live with the silence and find things that will complement it instead. Like getting lost in the pages of a book or writing a posts like this to share on the Internet. When I really can’t stand it anymore, I turn on the television for a little background noise or the music player when I am motivated enough to clean and potter around a part of the house.

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Right now, Mark and I are playing the very challenging game of waiting. Each day seems slower than the one before and I grow so impatient, so quickly. They say everything is slower by the water and the living is easy, and I can’t disagree. It is to many extents. But now, I crave the intensity that life can bring. Some aches, soreness and true tiredness that people complain about so often. I must sound ungrateful but I suppose I miss having a purpose.

Somehow, I’ve managed to channel most of my energy to spending more time in the kitchen. From starting out as a novice college cook to finally accomplishing to baking my own bread, I’m not hesitant to give myself a small pat on the back for this tiny yet significant achievement.

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For Sunday supper last weekend, I wanted to fix a dish that would compliment my Sunday baking project, which was a homemade crusty loaf of bread. So I thought what better way to eat it with a rich hearty stew. Mark and I were more than content with the result. I lit candles all around the living room while the stew gently simmered away in the kitchen like a pot of liquid gold and the bread rising wonderfully in the oven.

I was ecstatic when everything came together so perfectly. We poured ourselves a glass of Merlot each, cozied up on the couch and watched episodes of House of Cards on Netflix while dipping bits and pieces of the bread into our bowls and savoring it’s deep flavors.

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Beef Stew with Red Wine
Recipe adapted from Food Network

1 pound beef, cut into cubes (I used some cuts of steak and it worked fine)
1 can diced or crushed tomatoes
2 medium carrots, chopped
1 yellow onion, chopped
3 medium potatoes, cubed
1 large green bell pepper, chopped
1 1/2 tbsp all-purpose flour
2 cups chicken or beef stock
1 cup red wine (I used Merlot, but recipe suggests dry red wine ie. Pinot Noir)
3 tbsp butter
1 tsp dried rosemary
2 tbsp. Worcestershire sauce
Salt and pepper to taste
Italian parsley for garnish (optional) 

Directions:

Melt 2 tbsp of butter in Dutch oven or deep pot. Brown cuts of beef until almost cooked and most of the liquid has evaporated. Transfer to bowl.

Add remaining butter to pot. Stir in onions and carrots and cook until onions are translucent. Add bell pepper and incorporate flour to the vegetables and mix well. Stir in beef and pour chicken stock, wine and rosemary to pot. Turn heat up until mixture comes to a boil and then lower heat to a gentle simmer. Cook for about an hour partially covered. Stir occasionally.

Add potatoes to pot and cook covered for another 45 minutes until potatoes are soft, stirring occasionally. Garnish with parsley and serve warm.

Homemade Crusty Bread

I followed instructions from Simply So Good for this recipe and it’s the best. She does an excellent job at explaining everything to a tee and even giving solutions or alternatives. My bread turned out great despite using active dry yeast instead of the instant kind. Mark loved it, and so did I.