Avocado Feta Toast with Mushrooms and Spinach

How yumm-azing does that sound, especially if you are one of those freaks like me who loves avocados, spinach, AND mushrooms; the uber-healthy trifecta. Read on for something super-easy and super-scrumptious.

Oz cafes have a ton of amazing breakfast options. There’s the Shakshuka (turkish style eggs baked and topped with a spicy tomato sauce and chorizo), indulgent French toasts, omnipresent pancakes with an assortment of too good to be true toppings, Big Breakfasts, omelettes, and so on. (I could go on and on, typing and drooling).

A popular vegetarian breakfast option is avocado on sourdough toast which can be served with a side of eggs, or mushrooms, or even without. Having never ordered that (coz I am of the belief that when I order out, I will only order that which I will not make at home, so its mostly over-indulgent french toasts or million-toppings pancakes or potato rostis yada yada yada…) I always stored the idea somewhere in the back of my head.

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Avocados are an extremely versatile vegetable. You can use them as spreads, as dips, as salad fillers, and they are even super useful in baking. So using basic ingredients like bread, mushrooms, spinach, feta and avocado, here is a simple yet scrumptious breakfast plan, which doesn’t leave a mound of dirty pots and pans in its wake. Big yay!!

  1. Avo on Toast:

    • Crumble the feta cheese so you can sprinkle it onto the toast
    • Peel and scoop the avocado out into a bowl
    • Mash it
    • Add salt, pepper, oregano, and chilly flakes as per your taste
    • Toast 2 slices of preferred bread to make them crunchy
    • Spread the avocado mash on to the toast
    • Sprinkle the feta cheese on topAvo Toast1

      2. Sauteed mushrooms with spinach

    • Slice the mushrooms
    • Heat butter in a pan
    • Add the sliced mushrooms
    • Saute them for about 5-7 minutes
    • Switch off the gas, and add chopped spinach
    • Season with salt and pepper
    • Serve warm with the avocado toast

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Serve warm.

And like I say, now the world is your avocado bowl. Mash it, spread it, slice it, season it the way you like it. And then satisfyingly, eat it :)

 

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Strawberry Nutella French Toast Rollups

Love strawberries: Check

Love Nutella: Slurrp-check

Love french toast: Check check check!

So time to take it to another level, right?

I had a super big bag of strawberries (remember my visit to Prahran market and the bargain dollar deals?) and wanted to do something other than milk shakes, cakes , pancake toppings, etc etc, and I found this really yummy looking recipe for French Toast Rollups, by Christy at The Girl Who Ate Everything (I love that name, seems like we could be really good friends :D ). As complicated as it sounds, it actually takes like 15 minutes to assemble, prep, cook, and serve. Voila!

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The steps to get this delectable treat onto your table are quite simple:

  1. Take a few slices of bread (regular, wholemeal, brioche, challah, whatever you like), trim the crusts
  2. With a rolling pin, flatten out the bread slices so it’s easier to stuff and roll
  3. Spread on  Nutella on the slice
  4. Add the strawberries to one side of the slice
  5. Roll in the bread to form a roll up
  6. In a bowl, prepare the egg and milk mix to dunk the roll ups in, it is French toast after all
  7. Heat a pan with some butter
  8. Dip each roll in the egg and milk mix and fry in the pan, until is lightly browned
  9. To add onto the delectable-ness, you can also keep a bowl of powdered (not icing) sugar, or cinnmaon powder mixed with sugar, and roll the roll-ups immediately in them post cooking
  10. Pick ’em up with your hands, and nom nom nom….rollups6.jpg

 

Now I did pretty much everything above except for a few variations:

  1. I don’t like wasting food plus I really like the crust, so I did not trim the crust (that’s why my french roll ups look like a sausage roll, methinks)
  2. No dipping in sugar for the roll ups for me; Was happy with the end product just the same
  3. I used boring wholemeal bread so the roll ups are a little thicker and probably could have added tons more Nutella, but hey, to each his own. The plan was to use up the berries, not dunk myself in Nutella
Flatten out the bread with a rolling pin
Flatten out the bread with a rolling pin
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Spread Nutella. Stuff strawberries. Roll up bread. Ignore my scratched chopping board.
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Trimming the crusts would have definitely made for a prettier picture. But hey, I wanted to have my crust and eat it too ;)

So here a few links for this tasty TASTY treat, and a few variations that I got my eyes on (cream cheese and banana anyone, or is it just me?!)

  1. Christy’s version from the Girl Who Ate Everything: She alternated stuffing with strawberries and nutella,  and strawberries and cream cheese, yum yum yum.

Like I always say, make it, and make it NOW

Creamy Avocado Egg Salad

We got a new plant and it’s all pink and green. I thought Arjun would never agree, but voila, he <3’ed it too. Yay. It’s just the most gorgeous thing ever. I love it. And hopefully we are taking good care of it: watering it, sunning it, even talking to it.

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We are buying plants now. Wow.  Whole new grown-up territory.goes and wolves down 2 bags of fairy floss  There, that feels more like it.

Any suggestions on what we should name it, if any?
Any suggestions on what we should name it, if any?

Anyhoo, I had been craving a good egg salad for a while now. The last I had it was when I was in Derby, and I used to just pick up a pack of standard retail store egg salad – all mayo, raisins, mustard, boiled egg, and an assortment of other trimmings that made it what it is. Sounds ugh now, but I used to devour it like crazy then.

But fairy floss candy aside, my taste buds have now evolved. To the extent that I actually DON’T like mayonnaise anymore. Especially store bought egg mayo. I love garlic aioli in certain places, and I am sure the home made version of mayo is always awesome (never made it myself). But I just didn’t want to make an egg salad with mayo.

So Google baba helped me find out that a good substitute for mayo is greek yogurt and/or avocado. Awesome-saucesome.

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The first time I made this salad, I didn’t have any yogurt around and ended up using a spoon of garlic aioli (Australian for garlic flavoured mayonnaise). So even though it was tasty and all, I wasn’t satisfied. But then I made this recipe with greek yogurt  and what a difference it made.

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When made, this recipe will last for a good 3-4 days in the fridge in an air-tight container. Seal it as tightly as possible as with the avocados, there is a tendency to brown. However, if you are not using the avocados, this will last for a day or so more with no browning.

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Read on, and make at the earliest:

Ingredients

  1. 4 boiled eggs, chopped to whatever degree of fineness you like
  2. 1/2 avocado, mashed
  3. 1 tomato, diced
  4. 1 cup spring onions, diced
  5. 2 tbsps greek yogurt
  6. 2 tbsps feta cheese, optional
  7. 1 tsp dill
  8. 1 tsp oregano
  9. salt, pepper to taste

Makes 4 sandwiches, or 6 single toast servings easily

Method

Combine all ingredients in a bowl. (If you are boiling eggs as you are chopping and adding, add tomatoes in the end, as it leaves some water.) Spoon onto toasted bread. Layer it up with spinach, lettuce, some ham maybe. Serve and enjoy.

Note: Adding avocado is completely up to you. It just makes the salad a tad bit creamier. In case you want to make this without the avocado, please do increase the yogurt by 1 tablespoon or more.

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Let me leave you with some more egg salad recipes. Take your pick what you want to cook with. Maybe mine, maybe theirs :)

http://www.yummly.com/recipes/egg-salad-julia-child

Bon Appetit!

A Lazy Girl’s Pancake Recipe

 

I made these!
5 ingredients and 3 steps to this deliciousness on your plate

I am constantly drooling over pancakes and waffle items in breakfast menus, plus shopping at the Sainsburys and Coles of the world kind of spoils you, as you get ready made pancake batter in easy to carry bottles. Instant pleasures – 2 minute pancakes – Pour and cook. Lazy is as lazy finds.

 

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http://www.socialitelife.com

But being married makes you want to cook yumminess at home to show the husband that all that time googling food blogs is totally worth it. I wanted Sunday breakfast to be home-made pancakes yet also wanted minimal effort (input) and minimal mess (output).  I kept reading up on tons of pancake recipes; banana and chocolate, mixed berry madness, cinnamon and oatmeal, cornflour pancakes. Hmmm. It’s a crazy world out there. So I thought let’s go back to the basics. Let’s get the basic pancake recipe right, and the rest can always follow through.

Rather than search for exotic recipes, I searched for the basics. And that’s when I found Michael Ruhlman’s website http://www.ruhlman.com and this amazing tip:

2 parts liquid : 1 part egg : 1/2 part butter : 2 parts flour

Cram this formula up. Learn it until you can repeat it as easily as taking your own name. Trust me, it really works. I had all of these ingredients plus the other essentials (honey, maple syrup and FRUITS). Yes, this was totally happening! 

It just makes it all so simple. Once you understand the mathematics of it, then you can use your desired liquid (milk, buttermilk, yogurt) and adjust desired flour (1 part wholemeal to 1 part all purpose, or 1 part cornmeal to 1 part wholemeal). Add. Adjust. Cook. Let’s all say, THANK YOU Michael :)

Welcome to pancake perfection and exoticism in your very own kitchen!

http://www.socialitelife.com

So using this tip, I proceeded to conjure up some home-made pancakes to be served cafe style. Read on for the easiest pancake recipe EVER, with 5 ingredients and 3 basic steps, and trust me when I say, it works like a charm.

Exhibit A:

I made these!
I made these!

Ingredients

  1. All purpose flour (maida): 2
  2. Eggs: 1
  3. Milk: 2 cups
  4. Unsalted butter: 1/2 cup
  5. Powdered cinnamon: 1/2 tsp

Method

For the batter,

  1. Mix the dry ingredients (flour, cinnamon) in a bowl and keep aside.
  2. In another bowl, mix your wet ingredients (egg, milk, butter).
  3. Now add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and voila, your pancake batter is ready, quick and easy. (Also, this batter can be stored in the fridge overnight, so you can actually make it a day in advance and quickly churn out pancakes in the morning)

For cooking the pancakes,

  1. Cover your serving plate with aluminium foil to store the pancakes in, in order to keep them warm while you make the entire batch.
  2. Take a non-stick pan, dab a kitchen towel in a bit of oil and wipe the pan’s surface with the same.
  3. Once the pan is nicely heated, take a ladle full of the batter, pour into pan, and using the base of the ladle spread out the batter to flatten it. If you want thicker pancakes (like I do), add on another ladle-full, and then spread out the mix in the pan. Otherwise for crispy, thin pancakes one ladle of batter should be enough.
  4. In about 2-3 minutes, the pancake should be ready to flip over to the other side. Cook both sides to your ideal consistency. If you like well cooked pancakes, keep on for 3-4 minutes each side, while browning both sides. If you don’t want browned pancakes, ensure you cook each side for less than 3 minutes.

Serve the pancakes laden with maple syrup and honey, and topped off with your favourite fruits. The possibilities are endless, think strawberries, blueberries, kiwis, bananas, passionfruit, caramelised apples….

I couldn’t make up my mind, so I had a bit of every thing. And some honey.

Exhibit B

Honey and berries to top it all off

And if course, the pancake experience is never complete without the all important maple syrup. Oh, you beauty you!

nom nom nom
nom nom nom

Ruhlman’s tip totally changed my pancake-cooking mindset! Now am completely looking forward to experimenting with it and creating some more pancake-y memories at home.

Hope it helps you too :)

Sunday Scrambled Eggs

 

No Butter Super Yummy Breakfast
No Butter Super Yummy Breakfast

Yeah, I know it’s Monday, but I miss Sunday. In fact, I miss the entire weekend. Where did it go??

The weekday mornings go by in a crazy rush. Get up, get ready, quickly chug cereal and milk down, or make a peanut butter sandwich, and run to catch the train. (Note to self: I have GOT to become an early riser!). But weekend mornings, those are all mine to lazily wake up on, and plan my big weekend breakfast. And now that the husband is here (YAY), the weekends are even more awesome does somersault in head. Now since this was the husband’s first weekend in Melbourne, and I wanted to enjoy some super awesome breakfast options in Melbourne with him; pancakes at The Pancake Parlour, all day breakfast options at Gattica, fresh croissants at Dana’s patisseries, the Big Brekky at La Roche……

Possibilities galore. But alas, we both love to snore.

So by the time we were up and at ‘em to face the world, it was a little too late for ‘early’ breakfast. And we were still too bleary-eyed to get out and at ‘em. So I decided to whip up café style breakfast at home, and impress the husband with my cooking repertoire.

I call this breakfast meal my no-butter and no-oil special, and all you need to make this lavish and scrumptious breakfast are a grand total of 5 ingredients.

  1. Your favourite sliced toast
  2. Eggs
  3. Chorizo or whichever salami you personally prefer; even cocktail sausages will do
  4. Sundried tomatoes
  5. Baked beans in a can
  6. No oil, no butter. Don’t you dare reach out for it (Smacking your hands away!)

Read on for my recipe for Sunday Scrambled Eggs and Baked Beans on Toast

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