Healthy Mediterranean Cooking at Home

Category Archives: Breakfast

Great breakfast muffins but if you want to turn them into a dessert, add a cream cheese frosting.

Ingredients

2 cups All Purpose Flour
2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup wheat bran
1 1/2 cups dark brown sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
4 large eggs
2 cups grated carrots
1 cup chopped walnuts

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350°F. Line a muffin tin with liners and set aside.
Whisk the flour, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, bran, and salt in one bowl. In a second bowl whisk together the oil, sugar, eggs, and carrots. Stir the flour mixture into the sugar mixture. Add walnuts.

Using a muffin scoop fill the muffin tin cups to the top of the rim of each center of a muffin that comes out of the cup. Bake for about 25-30 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Cool in the pan for 20 minutes, then move the muffins to a rack to finish cooling.

Cream Cheese Glaze
4 oz cream cheese, softened 1/4 cup (half a stick) of unsalted butter, softened
1 cup powdered sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon milk

While the muffins cool, make the glaze. Combine all ingredients in a mixer with a whisk attachment;
whisk until creamy and smooth.
Once the muffins are cool, glaze each muffin with Cream Cheese Glaze.


Tuna Patties

Ingredients

2- 4 ounce cans of Italian tuna in olive oil
1/4 cup bread crumbs
2 shallots, chopped
1 tablespoon parsley, chopped
3 tablespoons chives, chopped
1/4 cup parmesan, grated
1/4 cup all-purpose flour + 2 tablespoons
1 tablespoon Greek yogurt
1 egg
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Salad

Salad greens
Sliced red onion
Sliced tomato
Kalamata Olives
Hardboiled Eggs
Pita bread
Italian salad dressing

Tzatziki Sauce

1 cucumber, peeled
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
1 cup fresh dill, stems removed
2 cups Greek yogurt
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
6 cloves garlic, pressed through a garlic press or finely minced

Directions

For the tuna patties
Place the tuna and its oil in a bowl, and add all the ingredients except the 2 tablespoons of flour and the olive oil. Mix well.
Place the 2 tablespoons of flour on a small plate. Form medium-sized patties, place them in the flour, and cover them lightly with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until ready to cook.


Heat a frying pan on medium heat and add the olive oil. Cook the patties for about 7 minutes on each side until lightly brown.

For the salad plate

Line individual plates with shredded lettuce, sliced tomato, red onion, olives, and sliced hard boil egg. Drizzle the plates lightly with your favorite Italian dressing. Place the 2 patties on each plate. Add a scoop of Tzatziki sauce a pita bread.

For the tzatziki sauce

add a handful of feta cheese to the sauce for more flavor/

Grate cucumber into a colander resting over a bowl. Sprinkle salt on grated cucumber. Let this sit for about 15 minutes.
Chop the dill and then add it to a bowl with the Greek yogurt, olive oil, and pressed garlic. Mix well.
Squeeze the water out of the cucumber in a kitchen towel or paper towel and then add to the tzatziki. Salt, to taste. Refrigerate for several hours.


 

Ingredients

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
4 ounces of guanciale, pancetta or thick-cut bacon), diced
1 whole clove of garlic, smashed lightly
1 pound of spaghetti
4 large eggs
1 cup of grated Pecorino Romano cheese
1 tablespoon of black peppercorns, crushed
Additional grated cheese for serving

Directions

Beat the eggs and cheese together in a mixing bowl.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add in the pasta and cook according to package directions until firm (al dente). Reserve about 1/2 cup of the pasta water to thin the sauce. Drain the pasta well.

At the same time, heat the olive oil in the large skillet over medium heat. Add in the diced meat and the whole clove of garlic and cook, stirring occasionally, until the pancetta is browned and the fat is rendered. Remove the garlic clove. Add the crushed black pepper.

Immediately add the hot, drained pasta to the pancetta/garlic sauce. Toss to coat the pasta with the reserved pasta cooking water.

Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the egg mixture tossing quickly so the eggs thicken but do not scramble. (It is very important to do this off the heat.) Serve the pasta with lots of extra cheese

 


Shrimp Salad In Cantaloupe Rings

2 servings

Ingredients

8 oz cooked shrimp, diced into small pieces
¼ cup finely chopped onion
¼ cup finely chopped green bell pepper
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
1 hard-boiled egg, chopped
2 teaspoons chopped fresh dill
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
Salt and pepper to taste
2 center-cut slices of cantaloupe kept in circles, about 1-inch thick, peeled and seeded

Directions

Combine the salad ingredients in a mixing bowl. Chill in the refrigerator for several hours.
Place a cantaloupe circle on each of the two plates. Divide the shrimp salad in half and pole into the cantaloupe rings and serve with the Zucchini Salad and muffins.


Zucchini Salad

2 servings

Ingredients

Salad
1 medium zucchini, sliced into very thin circles
1 small shallot, finely chopped
1/4 cup toasted walnuts
1/4 cup dried cranberries
2 tablespoons chopped fresh mint
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Lemon Vinaigrette
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
1 small garlic clove, grated
1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
1/4 teaspoon sea salt, more to taste
Freshly ground black pepper
1/2 teaspoon honey
1/4 to 1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil

Directions

Whisk together the dressing ingredients and set them aside.

In a medium serving bowl, combine the salad ingredients. Add half the dressing and mix well. Use the remaining dressing for another recipe.

Mini Corn Muffins

Ingredients

1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup cornmeal
1 tablespoon sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg
1/2 cup milk
2 tablespoons canola oil

Directions

Combine the cornmeal, baking powder, sugar, flour, and salt in a bowl. Whisk in the egg substitute, milk, and oil together.
Fill your mini muffin cups with batter up to three-fourths full.
Set your oven to 400 degrees F. Place the muffin cups inside the oven then let them cook for ten to twelve minutes or just until the toothpick inserted at the middle of the muffin does not have anything sticking to it when pulled out. Then allow them to cool down for five more minutes then place them on the wire rack.

 

 


Christmas Morning Coffee Cake

Almond Cream Cheese Coffee Cake

Dough

1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup butter, room temperature
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 packages (1/4 ounce) or 4 ½ teaspoons instant yeast
1/2 cup warm water (110° to 115°)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
4 cups all-purpose flour

Filling

1 package (8 ounces) cream cheese, softened
8 ounces almond paste

Glaze

2 cups confectioners’ sugar
2 to 4 tablespoons milk
1/2 teaspoon almond extract

To Make the Dough:

Combine the flour, yeast, and salt in a medium bowl and set aside.

Cream the butter and sugar in the electric mixer bowl fitted with the paddle attachment until light and fluffy. Add the water and eggs and beat until well combined.

Mix in the flour until the dough comes to a ball or comes away from the sides of the mixer bowl.

Switch to the dough hook and knead the dough for about 5 minutes or until you’ve made a soft, smooth dough.

Remove the dough to a floured surface. Grease the bowl and return the dough to the bowl. Allow the dough to rise, covered, for 45 minutes to 1 hour, or until it’s puffy (though not necessarily doubled in bulk).

To Make the Filling:

While the dough is rising, prepare the filling by beating the cream cheese and the almond paste together until smooth. Chill until ready to use.

Assembly:

Cover a large baking pan with parchment paper. I use a pizza pan.

Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface and roll into a large rectangle, about 20 x 14 inches.

Spread the filling on the dough, leaving a half-inch border all around the dough.

Roll the dough up from the long side (jelly roll style). Seal the edge tightly. Form the roll into a circle and pinch the ends together to form a ring.

Place the cake on the prepared pan. Using kitchen scissors, cut two-thirds through the dough from the outer rim of the circle at 1 inch intervals.

Allow the ring to rise, covered with plastic wrap or a kitchen towel for 1 hour until almost doubled in size.

Baking:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Place an oven rack in the center of the oven.

Bake the ring for 35 to 40 minutes until the crust is golden brown.

Remove the pan from the oven and cool on a wire rack. Wrap well and freeze until the day before Christmas. Defrost the cake at room temperature overnight.

For Christmas Morning

To make the glaze:

Combine the powdered sugar, almond extract, and enough milk to make a frosting that can be poured over the cake. Sprinkle with sliced almonds, if desired. Allow the glaze to set before serving.


Greek Spinach Frittata

Ingredients

12 large eggs
¼ cup olive oil
16 oz frozen spinach defrosted, raw or canned, and drained
1 onion finely dices
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 garlic clove minced
2 plum tomatoes, cut into thin slices
½ cup crumbled feta cheese

Directions

Heat the broiler.
In a large mixing bowl beat the eggs. Add the spinach, onion, garlic, and oregano. Mix well.
Heat the oil in an omelet pan. Pour in the egg mixture and cook until set, lifting the edges and letting the eggs run under the omelet. Top the egg mixture with sliced tomatoes, and fetta cheese. Place the pan under the broiler and cook for 2-3 minutes until the top is no longer runnun\g and beginning to brown.
Serve with pita bread and Tzatziki Sauce.


Homemade Banana Pancakes

Perk up your Sunday morning breakfast with these homemade pancakes. I like to mix the ingredients together the evening before and refrigerating the dough overnight. Saves time in the morning when everyone is waiting for pancakes.

Ingredients

2 cups self-rising flour
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1⁄2 cups buttermilk
1⁄4 cup firmly packed dark brown sugar
1⁄4 cup unsalted butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 large eggs
1 large ripe banana. chopped
3 tablespoons canola oil
Topping
Maple Syrup or honey
Mixed berries

Directions

In a large bowl, whisk together the dry ingredients: flour, sugar, and cinnamon. Stir in the chopped banana.
In a large measuring cup combine the melted butter, oil, eggs, vanilla, and buttermilk.

Make a well in the center of the flour mixture. Add the wet mixture to the dry ingredients, stirring until just combined.

Heat a large buttered cast-iron griddle or skillet. Working in batches, drop batter by 1⁄3 cupfuls 1 inch apart over hot oil. Cook until edges are dry and bubbles form in the center of pancakes, about 3 minutes; turn, and cook until browned, about 2 minutes more. Use remaining oil as needed. Serve with bananas and syrup.


Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
3/4 cup milk
1/2 cup vegetable oil
1/3 cup orange marmalade
1 cup chopped dates
1 cup chopped pecans or walnuts, toasted
½ cup brown sugar

Directions
Preheat the oven to 425º Fahrenheit. Oil a 6-jumbo muffin pam.
Combine the dry ingredients in a mixing bowl. Combien the wet ingredients in a large measuring cup including the marmalade. Stir the date and nuts into the flour mixture. Add the wet mixture just until combined.
Spoon the batter evenly into the six cups. Sprinkle with each top with brown sugar.

 

Bake at for 5 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 375º Fahrenheit and cook for an additional 15-20 minutes. The muffins are done when a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean.

 


Cool in the pan for ten minutes, then remove the muffins to a wire rack to cool.

 


Creamy Spinach Quiches

Serves 6-8

Ingredients

1 tablespoon butter
1 medium onion, diced
10 oz package frozen spinach defrosted and squeezed or the equivalent of fresh spinach
Coarse salt and ground pepper
8 ounces cheddar cheese, grated (about 2 cups)
1 Basic Pie Dough, fitted into a 9-inch pie plate
4 large eggs
1 cup heavy cream

Directions

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
In a skillet, melt the butter over medium. Add the onion, and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 2 minutes. Add the spinach to the skillet; season with salt and pepper, and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Set aside to cool.

In a mixing bowl, whisk together eggs, cream, 1/2 teaspoon salt, and 1 /2 teaspoon pepper.

Sprinkle the bottom of the pie dough with half the cheese. Spread the spinach mixture evenly over the cheese. Pour the egg mixture over the spinach. Sprinkle it with the remaining cheese. Place the pie dish on a baking sheet and transfer it to the oven.

Bake the quiche until set, 45 to 50 minutes. Let quiches stand 15 minutes before serving.

Cucumber Radish Salad

Ingredients

1 large cucumber peeled and cut into cubes
6 large radishes, trimmed and quartered
2 scallions, sliced thin
¼ cup dried cherries, chopped
¼ cup toasted walnuts
¼ cup chopped fresh mint

Combine ⅓ cup of your favorite Red wine vinaigrette mixed with 1 teaspoon honey. Mix into the cucumber salad. Ket marinates for about 30 minutes before serving.



This is not your gourmet recipe for Eggs Benedict. It is my simplified version with an easy-to-make sauce. Store-Bought muffins are perfectly fine but occasionally I like to make the homemade version because they are sturdier for recipes like this than the stores.

Eggs Benedict

2 servings

Ingredients

4 slices of baked ham cut to fit the bottom of the muffins and warmed
4 large eggs
2 teaspoons white vinegar
1 teaspoon salt
2 English muffins, toasted {store bought or homemade}

Cheese Sauce
1/2 cup cubed Velveeta cheese
¼ cup milk

Directions
Fill a large skillet halfway with water and bring to a boil on medium heat. Add the vinegar and salt. Turn the heat down until simmering.
Break each egg into a small bowl and gently add to the simmering water. Cover the pan and turn off the heat. Let the eggs poach for 3 minutes.

For the sauce
Place the cheese and milk in a microwave bowl and heat in the microwave for 2’3 minutes until smooth.
Remove the eggs, one at a time with a slotted spoon, and hold the spoon over a clean kitchen towel to drain for a few seconds. Place the egg on top of the ham for each of the 4 muffin halves.
Place two muffin halves on each serving plate. Top each egg with 2 tablespoons of sauce and serve immediately.

Homemade Baked English Muffins

Ingredients

2 1/4 cups bread flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon salt
2 teaspoons baking powder
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons instant yeast
1 cup + 2 tablespoons lukewarm milk
2 tablespoons melted butter
2 teaspoons vinegar, white or cider

Directions

Stir together all the ingredients in the large bowl of an electric mixer. Beat for 1 minute at the high speed of an electric mixer; the dough will become somewhat smooth.
Scrape the dough into the center of the bowl, cover, and allow it to rise for about 60 minutes until it’s quite puffy.
Cover two large baking sheets; or line with parchment. Grease twelve 3 ¾” English muffin rings, and place them on the baking sheets.
Turn the dough onto a lightly greased or floured work surface. Cut it into 12 equal pieces; each will weigh a scant 2 ounces..
Shape the dough into balls. Place each ball into a ring, pressing it down to flatten somewhat, and top with a greased baking sheet (or a sheet of parchment, then the baking sheet). The baking sheet should be resting atop the rings.
Let the muffins rise for about 60 to 90 minutes until they’ve puffed up noticeably. While the dough is rising, preheat the oven to 400°F.
Bake the risen muffins for 10 minutes. Flip the pans over, and bake for 5 minutes more. Remove the top pan, and bake for an additional 5 to 10 minutes, until they’re a light golden brown, and the interior of one registers about 200°F on an instant-read thermometer.
Remove the muffins from the oven, and transfer them to a rack to cool. Remove their rings as soon as you’re able. When completely cool, store muffins in a plastic bag.
Yield: 12 muffins.
Adapted from King Arthur recipes

 



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