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Let's Dish With Linda Lou

Sharing My Recipes, My Life, And The Food Tale Of Two Cities

Scrambled Eggs With Chives And Goat Cheese Breakfast Casserole

2015-01-23 11.28.15

This is one of my “go-to” breakfast recipes. I’ts everything you want for breakfast all in one dish. The topping, well… I love Pico de Gallo so yes it’s in there along with potatoes, sausage, cheese, and scrambled eggs. First, let’s take some help from the grocery store to make this wonderful breakfast as quickly as possible.

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To start, in a large non-stick saute pan, on med heat,  I sauteed some diced onion, with red and yellow bell peppers in a little unsalted butter. Then, adding in a bit more butter I added in some store bought shredded hash browns. I stirred all these ingredients together so that the melted butter would coat the peppers,onions, and hash browns. Now let the hash browns do their thing and don’t touch them for a couple of minutes so they brown really well before turning them. Once you’ve turned them, let them brown for another couple of minutes on the other side. After the hash browns with peppers and onions are done. Place them into a casserole dish as the bottom layer to this breakfast feast. Next the sausage.

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In my freezer, I just happen to have some breakfast sausage links. I sliced them up and browned them off in the same large skillet that I browned of the hash browns in. Now you could of course use the bulk breakfast pork sausage, or even the spicy variety. It’s just that, this is what I had on hand that day. I sauteed the sliced sausage pieces off until they got nice and caramelized on the outside, and laid them on top of the hash brown in the casserole dish. Using the same pan, I started on my scrambled eggs that have been mixed with heavy cream , and mixed with chives and goat cheese. I took some paper towel and just wiped out any left over fat that may have been released from cooking the sausage slices. Honestly, there wasn’t much at all. Low and slow, I scrambled the eggs, and when they were done, I turned the heat off and added in chopped fresh chives.

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I spread the scrambled eggs with the chives on top of the sausage. To the eggs, I crumbled some fresh goat cheese. The heat coming off of all these ingredients in the casserole dish melts the goat cheese beautifully. Now if you know anything about me, I will put Pico de Gallo on everything I possibly can. This is no exception. So all over the top I lay on the Pico.

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So what you have is those delicious and familiar breakfast item on the bottom with a cold citrus and spicy fresh salsa on the top. I ask you, what could be better?

Yields: 4 servings
Prep time: 15 minutes (for the veggies and Pico de Gallo)
Total Cooking Time: 40-45 minutes
Ingredients for Pico de Gallo: (search Pico de Gallo two ways on my search bar)
1 package of shredded store bought hash browns
4 tablespoons of unsalted butter ( 1 tablespoon for sauteing the pepper and onions, reserve the rest for potatoes)
1 red bell pepper diced
1 yellow bell pepper diced
1 onion diced
1 package of breakfast sausage of your choice (mild or spicy)
1-4 ounce package of goat cheese
3 tablespoons of chopped fresh chives
1/4 cup of heavy cream
10 large eggs beaten
1-1/2 tablespoons of Kosher salt ( 1/2 a tablespoon for the hash browns)
2 teaspoons of black pepper ( 1 teaspoon of black pepper for the hash browns)

Directions: First saute the onion, and peppers in the butter. Next add in the rest of the butter, let it melt and then add in the potatoes. Stir until everything is coated, and on med heat, let them brown on both sides. This may take around 10 minutes. After the potatoes are done, lay them in the bottom of a casserole dish. Next the sausage, then lay them over the potatoes. Then scrambling the eggs that are mixed with heavy cream for richness, chives for a mild onion flavor, and that glorious goat cheese for their finish. Place the eggs with chives over the sausage. Top the eggs with crumbled goat cheese. Finally the Pico de Gallo for that burst of flavor and color.

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Beef Barley Soup

2015-01-22 13.28.31 2015-01-22 16.33.25

Having worked at a few diners in my day, the words that are often spoken are “Soups On!”  I’ve made the soups, and served them too. My beef and barley, #soup was definitely a favorite on those cold Florida days. Let me start by showing you how I cook the barley.

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I start with low sodium chicken broth in a large pot. and some good barley. Next I add the barley to the chicken broth and bring them up to a boil, lower the heat to a simmer, and cook the barley until all the liquid has been absorbed.. This may take around 20-25 minutes to happen, so while the barley is cooking, I start the soup at the same time. The barley will have soaked in the flavor of the chicken broth which will make them really plump and delicious. Once the barley has finished cooking, I place a lid on it, move the pot off the heat, and let it sit until I’m ready to add it into the soup.

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Moving forward, in a large heavy bottom pot, I heat up some olive oil. To the oil I add in diced onion and let it saute until the onion is translucent. Next some minced garlic, dried oregano, crushed red pepper flakes, Kosher salt, and black pepper. I stir that around for just a minute before adding in the ground beef. Here I’m using a very lean type, ground sirloin. I want to use the very best ingredients for this soup so the finished product will be delicious. I let the ground sirloin cook on med high heat, with the onions, garlic and spices until it’s nice and brown in color. When the meat has finished browning I add in all my veggies. I have diced celery, diced carrots, and a can of fire roasted diced tomatoes. Remember to cut all the veggies around the same size so they cook evenly.  I stir all these ingredients together and let cook for a minute before adding in my liquid.

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I’m adding in some low sodium beef stock instead of beef broth. The stock has a deeper and richer flavor, and I thought it would be delicious in this soup. You want to make sure that that you add enough liquid. What I do is, to add enough beef stock where the liquid comes up to about 2 inches from the top of the pot. If you think you don’t have enough liquid, then you can always add in some water. Still on med high heat, I bring everything up to a bubble before reducing the soup to a simmer and letting it cook for around 30 minutes. After the 30 minutes I add in all that delicious barley that I’ve already prepared.

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I let that continue to simmer for another 15 minutes, so the barley can marry with all the other flavors in the soup. Turn the heat off and cover the pot and it’s ready to eat. Wait!, what about some home made croutons for the top. I just happen to have a nice baguette left over from yesterday that would work just perfect. All I did was to slice the baguette up and drizzle the slices with olive oil, salt and pepper and toasted them off in the oven until golden brown. “Soups On!

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Yields: 6 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 40-45 minutes
Ingredients:
1-1/2 cups of barley
1 quart of low sodium chicken broth
2 pounds of ground sirloin
1 -1/2 quarts of beef stock
1 diced onion
1 cup of diced carrots
1 cup of diced celery
3 cloves of minced garlic
1 tablespoon of dried oregano
1-1/2 tablespoons of Kosher salt
1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon of black pepper
1-15 ounce can of fire roasted tomatoes

Directions:
First you want to have all you veggies prepped, and the can of tomatoes opened and ready before starting the soup. Start by cooking the barley in the chicken broth at the same time you start the soup. After about 20 minutes of simmering on low keep your eye on the barley to make sure all the liquid has been absorbed so that you can remove it from the heat. Place a lid on it to keep it warm while the soup is cooking. After the soup has been simmering for at least 30 minutes then add the cooked barley, and continue simmering for another 15 minutes. At this point the soup is done. Place a lid on the pot to keep it hot and make yourself some delicious home made croutons for the top. I like to even throw on some shredded cheese. You know everything is just better with cheese!

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