A Big Breakfast

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By the looks of it, it’ll be a rainy morning today. The weather has always been erratic. Manila weather is even worse. When it rains, especially early in the morning, you know you’re kind of screwed. Commuting and traffic become ten times worse. I’ve learned to brave (and welcome!) the blistering heat because at least I know getting from point A to B is easier, although still uncomfortable.

However, nothing can really be said about what happens when it rains here in Zamboanga. When you’ve faced the mother of all monsters, the tiny ugly imps are manageable. In a strange, reverse-meteoric way, I feel happier when I wake up to the sound of rain. *and on cue, it starts to rain*

Maybe it’s because I know breakfast is mandatory to warm me up. Maybe it’s also because the light in my photos is pretty nice. And when there’s a marriage of the two, I know it’s a good morning indeed.
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My default breakfast meal would have to be egg rings. The inside of a ramekin is lined with bacon then an egg fills the center. It’s then zapped in the microwave or baked for 15 minutes. I’m partial to the gentle cooking that happens when it’s being baked. Today I had the bacon and the eggs, but I wanted more. I had some potatoes, a few spices and a pack of bratwurst just sitting in the freezer. The wheels started to churn and I went into overdrive. It was go time!

I don’t really know if a fancy name fits because this is by no means fancy. But it’s still pretty good. I’m going to be subtle about the title then:
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Baked Eggs over Bratwurst and Potatoes (serves 2 – 3)

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 2 pieces bratwurst/hungarian sausage, sliced thinly, around 125 grams each
  • 4 strips of bacon, sliced into 1-inch pieces
  • half a bulb of garlic, minced
  • 1 red onion, sliced
  • 1 small potato, around 150 grams, peeled and diced small
  • 50 grams green peas
  • 4 – 5 eggs
  • cayenne pepper, to taste
  • Spanish paprika, to taste
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • Chili flakes, for garnish
  1. Preheat the oven to 180 C/ 350 F. In a pan, heat the oil. Add the garlic and the onion. Saute until fragrant.
  2. Add the potatoes and cook until it starts to brown at the sides.
  3. Toss in the bacon and saute until it starts to render. Add the sausage slices and mix together.
  4. Add the peas. Season with salt, pepper, cayenne, paprika.
  5. Remove the pan from heat and crack the eggs over the mixture. Season the yolks with a little bit of salt, pepper and paprika.
  6. Place the pan in the oven and allow to cook for about 15 minutes or until the yolks are set but still slightly runny. When done, remove from the oven, garnish with chili flakes and serve warm with rice. Enjoy!

Breakfast Sausage on a Muffin (like the one from…)

If you’ve been visiting my blog time and time again you’ve probably noticed I also change my banner picture at almost the same frequency. I’m indecisive and spontaneous that way.

Anyway, today I started my day a little bit different. By “a little bit different”, I mean I woke up at 5:30 am, to exercise. Well, it’s a stretch because 1. lately my body clock tells me to wake up at 9am and 2. I don’t like exercise. I really don’t. I go to to the gym once I an while, but I stopped for a bit and right now I don’t have the gumption to go back. But today my parents did persuade me to go with them to jog at the sports complex at dawn. I took a break from jogging/running with my dad for almost a year now, so my endurance was weak. But taking that first step and feeling the cold air brush my cheeks as my heart and lungs struggle to keep up was invigorating. Granted, I couldn’t last one lap without stopping, but I was nice. It didn’t help that the rubber split from my shoes so I couldn’t last long.

When we got home I made breakfast sausages. No, not these sausages but ground pork salted and spiced and served warm on toasted English muffins. This is essentially my take on a McDonalds’ classic breakfast fare: the Breakfast Muffin which I’m a big fan of. This didn’t taste like a hamburger patty so I must have done something right.

I didn’t go crazy with the additional toppings because we didn’t have any. We had no produce, cheese and eggs. Poor us. But we did have pimiento spread so I just went with that. I toasted the bread with the pimiento already spread on it so it becomes this sweet buttery gooey accompaniment.

Breakfast Sausages (makes 4 – 5 patties; adapted from yummy.ph)

  • 1/4 kilo ground pork
  • 1/4 – 1/2 tbsp iodized salt
  • 1 tsp freshly cracked pepper
  • 1/4 tsp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp dried sage
  • 1/2 tsp dried marjoram
  • 4 – 5 English muffins, halved
  • any additional filling of your choice: cheese, mayo, lettuce (in my case we had homemade cheese pimiento spread lying around so I just used that + we had no lettuce and cheese)
  1. From yummy.ph: “To make sure that your sausage mixture is properly flavored, fry a small portion in a saucepan. Add more of the different spices as needed.”
  2. Thoroughly mix the ground pork with the spices.
  3. Grab a handful of the meat mixture and form into a ball and flatten it to form the patty. Form the patty in such a way that its diameter is slightly more than the diameter of the muffin (In my case it did shrink so it’s a precautionary measure)
  4. Drizzle oil in a nonstick pan and put it over medium heat.
  5. When the oil is hot, fry the sausages 2 or 3 at a time. Do not overcrowd the pan.
  6. Cook one side until it has a nice golden brown color and flip the patties to cook the other side. Once done, remove from heat and repeat the same steps for the remaining sausages.
  7. Toast the muffins until slightly crispy but not burnt. Assemble the sausage on the muffin with your preferred fillings. Enjoy!

Sausage and Caramelized Onions on Ciabatta

A few nights ago my dad came home cranky because he was hungry and he got crankier when we learned that nobody cooked dinner. I think I was still full so I didn’t bother to cook food. And my aunt was lazy to cook so she just reheated whatever leftover crap was in the fridge. So to preempt an impending nuclear meltdown, I decided to whip up his favorite butter sandwich. But then I thought, “It’s boring and vapid”. Yeah, I call food vapid.

There were still some sausages in the refrigerator, and a few pieces of ciabatta left. So taking a cue from a recipe that I read in a local magazine, I decided to slice an onion, caramelize it with sugar, slice and fry the sausages, toast the ciabatta and put it all together to make a pretty good sandwich.

At the end of the night, my dad was still cranky not because he didn’t like the sandwich. He actually it, but when he left what was left of his sandwich on the table because he needed to go to the toilet, my mom finished his sandwich off because she said it was really really good. And when he came back, well, you get the idea. So I just had to make another one. The spicy savory sausages went perfectly well with the sweetness of the onions.

If you’re wondering, the only hungarian sausage I really like is the Mister Sausage variety, which is sold only at LB grocery. I like it because it’s smoky, spicy and savory. The Italian sausage is the Swiss Deli kind.

Sausage and Caramelized Onions on Ciabatta (serves 2)

2 medium sized ciabatta
1 tablespoon cooking oil
2 large white onions, sliced
1 – 2 tablespoons white sugar
1/2 tablespoons vinegar (I used apple cider vinegar)
1 Hungarian sausage, sliced 1/2 inch thick
1 Italian sausage, sliced 1/2 inch thick
2 tablespoons mayonnaise, divided

 

Slice the ciabatta in half. Toast it in an oven toaster for 2 – 4 minutes.

Heat oil in a pan. Add the onions and allow to sweat for about a minute. Add in the sugar. Stir and allow the onions to go limp and take on a light caramel color. Add the vinegar. When done, remove the onions from the pan.

Using the same pan, fry the sausages until it becomes golden brown and the fat renders. Remove from the pan when done.

To assemble: Spread 1 tbsp mayonnaise on one half of the ciabatta. Add the sausage slices evenly on the bread.  Add the caramelized onions on top of the sausages. Top it with the other half of the ciabatta. Repeat the process for the other ciabatta. Serve warm and enjoy. 🙂


Deli sandwiches for breakfast

Today I was a morning person.

Well, I was supposed to get a few more minutes of sleep, but my mom woke me up because apparently last night I promised to make her breakfast. I did? Oh well.

I wanted to make these breakfast sandwiches for a while now. Ever since I had this lightbulb moment of taking my egg rings to a whole new level, I’ve been thinking about these warm, rustic, amazingly simple bread fares time and time again. I was supposed to make them with homemade mayo, since after two failed attempts I think I can muster up the confidence to make a whole new batch. But well, we ran out of eggs so I’ll just defer that to another day.

Still, it tasted really good. The freshness of the lettuce + the warm toasted bread + savory cuts of meat + the tangy mayonnaise + eggs sunny side up =  good mornings made great.

Breakfast sandwiches (serves 2)

1 ciabatta
2 English muffins
2 – 3 breakfast sausages (I used The Swiss Deli variety, the slightly small hotdog variety)
1-2 pieces sliced processed meat (The Swiss Deli circular kind. haha)
lettuce leaves
2 teaspoons mayonnaise, divided
2 eggs
A dash of Spanish paprika, basil, salt and pepper
 

Make the eggs: Break the eggs into two separate ramekins. Sprinkle the paprika, basil, salt and pepper on top of the yolk. Microwave on high for 2 minutes, or until egg whites are cooked and not runny anymore.

While the eggs are cooking, slice the sausages in half. Heat oil in a pan. Fry the sausages until slightly browned. Once cooked, remove it from the pan and put it on a plate with a paper towel to absorb the excess oil. Fry the sliced meat until slightly brown as well.

Slice the ciabatta in half. Let it toast in a toaster oven for 2 – 3 minutes. Once done, remove it and place the two English muffins in the toaster for 2 – 3 minutes as well.

Assemble: Spread a teaspoon of mayo on one piece of the sliced ciabatta. Liberally add lettuce leaves. Place the sliced sausages. Top it with the other ciabatta slice. Spread a teaspoon of mayo on one muffin. Add the lettuce leaves, then the sliced meat and top with the other muffin. Serve warm and Enjoy!