Individual Farro-Chickpea Egg Bake

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Besides gigantic bar crawls, things have been a bit crazy for me. My current work project, which I’ve been working on for the last 3 years, is coming to a close. i have two weeks left…well, one and a half weeks at this point. It’s time to clean out my desk, pack up, and take things back to the consulting company office. I’ve been getting a little sentimental looking through all my old documents, but I’m looking forward to moving on to something new. It would be a lot better if I knew for sure what exactly was next, but I’m hoping to find out more solid details soon. In the meantime, I will focus on the next week and a half.

I’m working on enjoying the ability to WFH since that may not be possible with the next gig. One of my favorite parts of being able to WFH is enjoying better breakfasts since I don’t lose time in commuting (or putting on “real” clothes).

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Recently, I combined some of that leftover Rosemary Garlic Farro with Chickpeas with one of my favorite breakfasts – the Individual Egg Bake. They actually went together quite well and made for a hearty and filling breakfast. And did I mention this is my favorite multi-tasking breakfast? Yup, I can get a lot accomplished in the almost 20 minutes it takes for this to bake.

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Individual Farro Egg Bake

Don’t let the word “bake” throw you off. This recipe is actually pretty fast, and it’s actually better for busy people than scrambled or fried eggs. Why? Because you don’t have to get tied to the stove while this cooks. Just mix and bake and multi-task away while the oven does the heavy-lifting. Sub in any other leftover farro, rice, or other grain pilaf…whatever you have on hand!

Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 16-19 minutes
Total Time: 21-24 minutes

Ingredients (multiply by each serving for multiples):

  • non-stick spray
  • 1 cage free or farm fresh egg
  • 1 tablespoon frozen, chopped spinach
  • 1 teaspoon milk
  • pinch of salt
  • a bit of fresh-ground pepper
  • 2 tablespoons leftover cooked farro (I used leftovers from this yummy recipe)

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly spray individual casserole dish(es) with non-stick spray.
  2. Combine egg, spinach, milk, salt, and pepper in a bowl and whisk together. Add farro and stir to combine.
  3. Evenly distribute egg mixture to individual casserole dish(es). Bake until edges are golden brown and egg is set in the middle, about 16-19 minutes (depending oven temperature, etc.). Note: I used a toothpick to check doneness, sort of like you would for cake.
  4. Remove from oven and let sit for a couple minutes till it’s safe to eat. Enjoy!

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Looks like I’ll be back to more grab and go breakfasts soon. I’ll probably end up either taking them to the office or just storing them there to begin with. My favorites – yogurt and granola, cereal and soy milk, and toast with almond butter.

What are your favorite grab and go breakfasts?

Tropical {Vitamin} C Blast Green Monster Smoothie

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I realize in this chilly weather that an ice-cold smoothie probably isn’t the first thing to come to mind, but since we’re still in cold & flu season, this one may…

I was feeling a little run down the other day and in need of a big blast of Vitamin C to ward off any approaching sickness. So, I blended up this little concoction to help the cause.

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I call it Tropical {Vitamin} C Blast Green Monster Smoothie.

I picked fruits {and some other goodies} that I had in my freezer and kitchen that I thought were good sources of vitamin C: pineapple, mango, orange juice, bananas, spinach, and…wait for it…parsley.

We’ve talked about the health benefits of spinach before, but did you know parsley is a good source of vitamin C? Yup, it’s not just a pretty face…er…garnish.

Here’s a snippet from whfoods.com:

“In addition to its volatile oils and flavonoids, parsley is an excellent source of two vital nutrients that are also important for the prevention of many diseases: vitamin C and vitamin A (notably through its concentration of the pro-vitamin A carotenoid, beta-carotene).”

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Tropical {Vitamin C} Blast Green Monster Smoothie

This smoothie takes me to the tropics flavor-wise, but it’s good for you, too. The smoothie contains a few ingredients that are good sources of vitamin C to help fight off colds and the flu: pineapple, mango, bananas orange juice, spinach, and parsley. Yes – parsley! Just a wee bit. I will warn you – parsley has a strong flavor. If you don’t really like it, you may be better off leaving it out. If you want to add some, err on the side of less-is-more. And if you’re a regular juicer, then, you’ll probably think lots of parsley is delicious. ;)

Total Time: 10 minutes
Serves: 1

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 – 2 cups loosely packed spinach (or sub 1/4 cup frozen spinach)
  • 1 small sprig parsley (about 3 leaves) – see note above for suggestions, optional
  • 1 banana (a frozen banana will give you a thicker consistency, but non-frozen works, too)
  • 5 small pieces of frozen mango, about 1/4-1/3 cup
  • handful of frozen pineapple pieces, about 1/4-1/3 cup
  • 1/4 cup orange juice
  • soy milk (or milk of choice, but dairy may curdle with the acidic fruits), as needed to reach desired texture
  • sweetener of choice, to taste, optional (but you probably won’t need it – the pineapple and bananas are very sweet naturally)

Directions:

  1. In order: place spinach, parsley (if using), banana, mango, pineapple, and orange juice in the blender.
  2. Cover and blend until ingredients are processed and smooth, about 1-2 minutes (if you need, stop and add milk and blend again until smoothie starts blending and/or reaches desired texture). Taste test and if desired, blend in sweetener of choice to taste.
  3. Enjoy!

***

Pinspiration:

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A pin with a nice variation by Larisa

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How’s everyone doing with Eat in Month? Things are going pretty well on my end, especially since hubby is really into the challenge this year. With my work hours being pretty insane right now, he’s really been helping out with cooking and cleaning. Bless him!

I’ve updated the Eat in Month Challenge post (click) with links to blogs for those who left comments on the challenge page saying they were participating. I added names (sans links) for those who are playing but do not have blogs/web sites. I noticed a couple other people playing who left comments on other posts here on TCL, so once I find them, I’ll get you added.

If you haven’t commented yet, but you’re playing and you want to see your name in the EIM Challenge participant list, just leave me a comment, and I’ll add it! :)

Ooh, and fun news on the food front…I saw a neat feature in Real Simple where they did 5 take-out style meals you can easily re-create at home, and I’m working on some of my own so help you EIM-ers curb your take-out cravings.

What are your favorite things to order for take-out?

Individual Italian Spinach Parmesan Egg Bake Recipe

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I don’t know about you, but I’m not quite ready to head back to work yet. I could use another morning sleeping in if nothing else. But if you’re like me, and you want something easy and delicious to help ease you back into the daily grind, then look no further.

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How about an Individual Italian Spinach Parmesan Egg Bake?

You can make this individual egg bake while you’re getting ready. I know baking things seems complicated, but hear me out. If you made a fried egg, or stovetop oats, you’d have to sit there stirring the darn thing. With this, you spend about 5 minutes or less stirring and the oven does all the heavy lifting without requiring your attention. Winning!

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Here’s what you need: an egg, a little milk, some frozen spinach, some parmesan (or click here for a version of this recipe using cheddar)…

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…and some Italian spices: basil, red pepper flakes, garlic powder, plus salt and black pepper.

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All you need is a little stirring…

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…some grating…

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…more stirring

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…veg serving (with a wee bit of stirring here, too)…

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…pour, bake, and…

(don’t worry – there’s a short cut allowing you to skip the excessive stirring)

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Voila!

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Breakfast is served!

Individual Italian Spinach Parmesan Egg Bake Recipe

This egg bake recipe looks more complicated than it actually is. I love making this breakfast on even my most busy days. It requires a mere 5 minutes of your attention and then your oven does all the work without needing you. You get the best of both worlds – a tasty breakfast and more time to get ready for work…or whatever lies ahead of you that day. PS: I’ve also made this for a super simple lunch or dinner (paired with whole grain toast). Uh-huh!

Easily customize this recipe by substituting your favorite cheese, vegetable, or spices.

Note: In the photos, I added my egg, milk, spices and stirred, then cheese and stirred, then spinach and stirred – but you can just mix it all up at one time if you’re in a rush, and this recipe is written for a busy morning. ;)

*Vegetarian*

Serves 1 (but easily multiplies to feed more people)

Prep time: 5 minutes
Cook time: 16-19 minutes (enough time to do your make-up or pack lunch!)
Ingredients:

  • non-stick spray
  • 1 cage free or farm fresh egg
  • 1 tablespoon frozen, chopped spinach
  • 1 tablespoon grated parmesan
  • 1 teaspoon milk
  • 1/4 teaspoon Italian seasoning or dried basil
  • pinch of salt
  • a bit of fresh-ground pepper
  • dash of garlic powder (about 1/8 teaspoon)
  • dash of red pepper flakes (depending on how spicy you like it)

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly spray individual casserole dish(es) with non-stick spray.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk together.
  3. Pour egg mixture into individual casserole dish (evenly distribute if you multiplied the recipe). Bake until edges are golden brown and egg is set in the middle, about 16-19 minutes (depending oven temperature, etc.). Note: I used a toothpick to check doneness, sort of like you would for cake.
  4. Serve with a tasty carb like zucchini muffins or whole grain toast. Enjoy!

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Did I mention this breakfast goes great with homemade Oat-licious Zucchini Muffins? (I like to freeze my leftovers and re-bake them for a fresh-out-of-the-oven taste without all the work)

If this doesn’t make a post-vacation work week better, I don’t know what will. ;)

Reader question: How long do you spend making and eating breakfast during the work week?

Figgy Green Monster Smoothie (Tastes Like Cake Batter!)

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With my Green Monster madness going on recently, I’ve been coming up with some pretty interesting concoctions. Seriously, I have about 3 recipes queued up over here. Anywho, none had more interesting, or shall I say a surprising, taste than my latest – Figgy Green Monster Smoothie.

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It’s a fig smoothie that tastes like cake batter.

The smoothie had zero elements that I would normally use to make a cake batter flavor and yet it tasted like cake batter! Ok, maybe it’s just me. You guys know I like to make my cake batters on the healthier side. But I honestly took the first sip after blending this smoothie up and thought…hmm…cake batter?

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I came up with the idea to make a fig smoothie because my friend who has a fig tree brought in a bunch to give me. Score! Unfortunately, even without teaching Zumba, my schedule has been hectic, so I haven’t exactly had a bunch of free time to experiment with a cool recipe.

So…What could I do quickly with figs? Why not put it in a smoothie, right? And as it turns out, figs in a smoothie are a good thing.

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Figgy Green Monster Smoothie (Tastes Like Cake Batter!)
 
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
 
Have figs and don’t know what to do with them? The easiest thing you can do (besides eating them plain) is blend them into a delicious and healthy smoothie. Since I’m on a Green Monster kick, I decided to add spinach to mine to make it green. This Green Monster smoothie had an unexpected cake-batter-like flavor.
*Vegan if you use vegan milk*
Author:
Recipe type: Breakfast
Cuisine: American
Serves: 1
Ingredients
  • 1½ – 2 cups loosely packed spinach (or sub ¼ cup frozen spinach or fresh/frozen kale)
  • sweetener of choice, to taste, optional (you can add with the other ingredients or blend and taste first and add in at the end)
  • 1 banana (a frozen banana will give you a thicker consistency, but non-frozen works, too)
  • 4 figs, stems removed, halved
  • 1 cup milk of choice (dairy, non-dairy, vanilla non-dairy, etc.) – I used vanilla soy
  • 2 cubes ice
Instructions
  1. Place spinach, banana, figs, milk, and ice in the blender.
  2. Cover and blend until banana/figs/ice is processed and smooth, about 1-2 minutes.
  3. Enjoy!
Notes
Easily multiplies for additional servings.

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Here’s a GM smoothie recipe that was actually designed to taste like Cake Batter…Nom!: Cake Batter Green Monster – Peas and Thank You

You may enjoy some of these other Green Monster smoothies:

*Click here to read my Green Monster 101 post* (it explains what a GM is plus some ingredient and blending tips)

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Enjoy! :)

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Reader question: Figs were an ingredient that I never really expected to put into a smoothie. What’s the most unexpected thing you’ve put into a smoothie? Did you like it?

Vegetable Garden Babies and Green Eggs & Havarti

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My, my, my…the garden is really growing up fast!

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I’m really excited to be eating fresh vegetables straight from my own backyard! I only wish I had a bigger garden! lol. Maybe one day. For now, I will admire the baby vegetables slowly starting to form.

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Let’s see…we have future cherry tomatoes.

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And the green bean plants are starting to flower, which means I’ll have tri-color green beans, soon!

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And my banana pepper plant has a couple little mini peppers slowly forming.

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On the other side of the yard, my squash plants are getting bigger and bigger every day!

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And are those future squash blossoms I spy?

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I also have a huge assortment of herbs growing in various pots near the house. On Friday morning, I plucked a fresh sprig of dill, which I used as the inspiration for my veg-i-ful breakfast.

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You guys know my usual egg and bagel breakfast? Well…something’s been missing for awhile now, and thanks to Project Veg-Up, I’ve figured it out. I needed to add in some fruit and vegetable servings! Now just look at how much more well-rounded and nutritious this meal is. It took only a handful of minutes longer to put this together, but this is a far more power-packed plate of goodness. Don’t you just want to dig in?

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The eggs look like green eggs and ham. hehe. I’ve seen people doing that with pesto, but this baby is just comprised of spinach as far as greens go. Ooh, and that dill.

Green Eggs and Havarti (with Spinach & Dill)

This take on the classic egg scramble ups the ante with some fresh and flavorful dill and easy-to-access frozen, chopped spinach. For my vegan friends, I bet this would be equally amazing as a tofu scramble!

Serves 2

Ingredients:

  • 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 1/4 cup onion (or do 1/8 if you don’t like a lot of onion)
  • 1/4 cup spinach (frozen, chopped)
  • 2 eggs, preferably local or humanely raised
  • 1 sprig fresh dill, chopped (about 1-2 teaspoons)
  • 1-2 tablespoons chopped havarti

Directions:

  1. Heat a small non-stick pan over medium-low heat. Add extra virgin olive oil and onion. Cook onion till it starts to turn translucent, about 4-5 minutes. Add spinach and cook till defrosted, about 2-3 minutes.
  2. Crack eggs into pan and stir to scramble (or you can crack eggs into a bowl and whisk with a fork, but my method is for the lazy chef – less mess! Winking smile ). Once eggs are mixed together, stir occasionally and cook to preferred texture (everyone has their own doneness preference).
  3. When eggs are nearly done, stir in dill and havarti. Season with salt and pepper. Cook until havarti is just melted.
  4. Serve with whole grain toast or a bagel and fresh fruit.

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I actually didn’t count the veg as 1 serving for Project Veg-Up, but it was still worth throwing them in for flavor alone.

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And the fruit made for a great breakfast-dessert – so refreshing!

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And just wait till you see the amazing lunch I threw together. I used stuff I had around the house and greens from the farmer’s market and my garden. It was a very tasty surprise! 

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This morning’s lesson: So, even though I usually try to shoot to include fruits and veggies with every meal, I was reminded with today’s breakfast just how easy and delicious that can be!

What about you? Do you try to include fruits and vegetables in every meal or do you try to get your servings in at certain times of the day?

Individual Spinach Cheddar Egg Bake Recipe

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Hey friends! I have a fun new recipe for you guys!

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Individual egg bakes!

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Because everything is more fun to eat in smaller sizes, right?

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Individual Spinach Cheddar Egg Bake Recipe (Mini Casserole)

These easy egg bakes are the perfect busy morning breakfast. Who needs to spend all morning stirring scrambled eggs or flipping the pan-fried version? These egg bakes take less than 5 minutes to mix up and you can finish getting ready while they bake away. Switch out your favorite vegetables, cheeses, and herbs to tailor the flavor to your liking. Multiply the recipe to feed as many mouths as you need.

Ingredients (multiply by each serving for multiples):

  • non-stick spray
  • 1 cage free or farm fresh egg
  • 1 tablespoon frozen, chopped spinach
  • 1 tablespoon grated cheddar cheese (use less for stronger cheeses like parmesan)
  • 1 teaspoon milk
  • pinch of salt
  • a bit of fresh-ground pepper
  • dash of garlic powder
  • dash of dill, option, but fantastic!

Directions:

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees F and lightly spray individual casserole dish(es) with non-stick spray.
  2. Combine all ingredients in a bowl and whisk together.
  3. Evenly distribute egg mixture to individual casserole dish(es). Bake until edges are golden brown and egg is set in the middle, about 16-19 minutes (depending oven temperature, etc.). Note: I used a toothpick to check doneness, sort of like you would for cake.
  4. Enjoy!

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Other veggies I recommend to mix in: chopped broccoli, kale, cauliflower. Yum! Additional flavor combos: broccoli/cheddar, spinach/feta, tomato/parmesan, sun-dried tomato + spinach/parmesan, kale/mozzarella, kale/smoked gouda…the possibilities are endless!

What veggie/cheese combo egg bake would you most like to eat?

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