Garden, Plant, Cook!

Monday, June 05, 2017

Root Vegetables With Cheese and Cool Link to Interesting Vegetables to Grow

Dear Folks,

Yesterday for our Sunday breakfast I cooked up Chantenay carrots (THE best carrot in the garden), Purple "Molokai" sweet potatoes and regular potatoes all from the garden, covered with some cheese and topped with a fried egg!

Since I had the Molokai sweet potato, I did not include my own purple Irish potatoes as I had when I made a great potato salad for our Memorial Day BBQ.  (I called it my Red, White & Blue Potato Salad -- I make mine with a citrus/avocado oil dressing, not mayo, and herbs from the garden.)

Back to the potatoes for breakfast.

Oh boy was this good.  Our Sunday breakfast is our weekly big breakfast treat, eggs and bacon and I mix up the methods; sometimes I make up a small pot of savory oatmeal and top with an egg, other times it is just simple egg over toast, and when Deane makes breakfast he scrambles everything together.

In the pan I would be using for the eggs, I simmered the diced potatoes for about 8 minutes in salted water until knife tender - I did not want them to be mushy.  Drained, then I topped with shredded cheese (Monterey Jack in this case) then fried up the eggs.  I cook the bacon (no nitrate type) in the microwave to reduce the fat.

We like eggs many ways, but I used to have the worst time getting fried eggs that were perfectly cooked, until I read and saw a demo on the old America's Test Kitchen on how to cook the perfect fried eggs.  The total time involved is anywhere from 2.5 minutes plus to more depending on how many eggs you are cooking.  This was a genius tip.  The video is difficult to find, so here are the steps.

Crack your eggs into a bowl - best to use eggs at room temperature.  TIP:  Crack eggs on a flat surface not the edge of a bowl, you will be less likely to end up with shells.  Season the eggs while in the bowl.

Heat a pan on medium high.  It needs to be screaming hot - takes about 4-5 minutes, seriously.  Add 1 teaspoon / tablespoon oil and swirl around until it shimmers.  Have eggs and cover ready.  Once the oil shimmers add 1 teaspoon / tablespoon of butter.  Swirl quickly, add eggs and cover and set the timer for 1 minute.

Here are the ratios:  I only do 2 eggs, and use a teaspoon of the fats.  If you have a large pan and more eggs go with the tablespoon.

Once the timer goes off I count while looking through my clear cover for the white to look "more set" - then -- and this is the important part - remove, still covered to a cool burner and reset the timer for 1 minute.

Again check through the cover when the timer goes off and maybe give it more time.  With my two eggs in a small pan, my eggs are usually done in total of 2.5 minutes.  About 1:20 for each of the two steps.

Immediately serve your perfect fried eggs.   The first time you do this it will take you a bit to learn your pan / eggs / timing / stove (electric/gas) but once you have it figured, and enjoy fried eggs you will love the technique.

The reasons this works is:  1) screaming hot pan - most people don't really let the pan heat up enough; 2) JUST enough cooking time, and 3)  Removing the still very hot covered pan to continue slowly finishing the cooking on a cold burner.

Two things I forgot with our breakfast meal.  I meant to drop some chopped onion into the pan with the potatoes for the last minute, and I forgot to sprinkle the eggs with chopped celery leaf from the garden.  Flavor flourishes that add just a bit more to the meal.

MORE cool vegetables to consider for your garden.

I have a reader in Spain and she and I share what is growing from time to time and she mentioned Yakon and Crosne two cool vegetables, I checked out when she first mentioned them last year.  At the moment I don't have a place for them, but decided to refresh my memory and found this really cool site on "24 forgotten" vegetables.  You NEED to check this out and decide if you should be growing any of these.  I do grow the purple/blue potatoes.  I need to spend some time (probably today) and carefully go through the list

While the link title is "For Vegans & Vegetarians" omnivores will love these too.

When you get to some of the neat sounding veggies like Crosne, they reminded me of Jerusalem Artichokes which have the same crinkly texture and I had seen a very cool video on how to clean these types of veggies without needing to peel them (and lose a lot of edible flesh).   Of course I can't find the video, but the gist is you rinse the roots, shake coarse salt all over them, wrap in a cotten towel and roll back and forth, scrubbing the roots with the salt.  The resulting roots are partially salted too, although you can rinse again if you like.

Ending this post with a picture of my lovely Conehead Thyme.  This lovely and aromatic herb has a combination flavor of thyme, oregano and savory.  Delicious on your food, and gorgeous in the garden.

You can find my gardening calendars and books for purchase on the sidebar here on the blog.

-- Catherine, The Herb Lady

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