Monday, 10 December 2012

Playing With My Food

Written by Linda Gauthier

Looking at old recipes with new eyes


I have decided to take a new angle on some of my old recipes, so I am playing with my food.
One of the recipes I'm looking at, is a Christmas staple in our house.
Every year, I make the dish known as "Mom's Easy Christmas Breakfast".  I have no idea if that is the correct name, but it is the name we called it in my house.  I do know that there are tons of variations of this recipe out there.
Here is the one I have used for years.

6-12 slices cooked ham
1 1/2  cups sliced fresh mushrooms
8 slices white bread slices 
2 cups shredded cheese

Beat together the following ingredients:

8 eggs
1  1/2 cups milk
1  1/2 cups cream
1 1/2 teaspoons dry mustard or 3 tablespoons Dijon-style mustard
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper


Lightly coat a 3-quart rectangular baking dish with cooking spray; set aside.
Place bread slices in prepared baking dish.
Top with half of the ham, mushrooms, and cheese.
Pour half of the egg mixture over the bread and ham mixture.
Repeat layers with remaining ham, mushroom and cheese mixture top with the remaining egg mixture. 

Using the back of a spoon, gently press down on layers.
Cover and chill at least 2 hours or up to 24 hours.
We always made it the night before.
Bake, uncovered, in a 325 degree F oven for 50 to 60 minutes or until puffed, golden and set.
Let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
Makes 12 servings.

So this morning, I started on a plan to reduce the calories of this dish.
Wondering out loud, not sure what to call it, Hubby flippantly stated that we should "hug it and squeeze it and call it George", but somehow I don't think that is quite right.

Name choice number 2,  is...

"Mini Wife Savers"

I wanted to have something with the same texture and flavour, but lower calories and smaller portions.

To Serve 3 
Preheat oven to 325
Baking dish with hot water to use as water bath for ramekins when cooking.
Bake in oven for 15 min

Ingredient list:

2 slices of Organic Applewood Smoked Bacon
5 large eggs
3/4 Cup 1% milk
1/2 Cup shredded cheese
4 slices of whole wheat bread
Epicure Selections Roasted Garlic
Epicure Selections Roasted Red Pepper Dip
Epicure Selections Herb and Garlic Sea Salt
Epicure Selections Fresh Ground Pepper
6 small ramekins for baking

Beat the eggs, with the milk add the herbs and salt and pepper set aside. Slice each slice of Whole wheat bread in 1/2
fry bacon until slightly crisp, cut each piece into 1/3 rds 
Dip the whole wheat bread in the egg and milk mixture
place in ramekins

Bacon slices cut in 1/3's

Bread lining the Ramekins

Place bacon slices into the center of the bread cup 

egg mixture left over from dipping the bread

Pour remaining egg mixture into center of bread cups over the bacon, top each ramekin with cheese.

Spices and cheese

Ramekins in water baths

Place in preheated oven, bake for approximately 15 mins.

baked "Mini Wife Savers"


The flavour was good and the texture was true to that of the original.  The flavour of the bacon was more intense than the ham and was very nice.  With such a small portion, it required a stronger meat flavour than could be achieved with the ham slices.  I think this is going to be what I have for my Christmas Brunch, not sure of the sides yet, working on that still.

And I thought I got myself into messes? 

"Oh No, Now I've Done It !"
Now what?

Hope you are having a better day than this guy, keep smiling, and trying new things. 
Try looking at things from a different angle, you might be pleasantly surprised.
Then again, you might end up like this guy, but that's not always bad is it?  It's making you smile, right?
Or you may be feeling empathy, either way, you are viewing things differently than you were 5 minutes ago.

Talk to you soon.

1 comment:

  1. Both look very tasty. Getting hungry here looking at them. I'm torn between the two, I don't know which one to make on Christmas morning for our Skype breakfast! Will have to cut mine down to 2 servings at least or if I make the first one, cut it at least in 1/2. So looking forward to it!