December 1, 2009

Egg Sandwiches and Roasted Carrots

I'm Jenna, I'll introduce myself properly soon. I'm not yet as blog-savvy as Becca, but here is my first post:

So after the leftovers bonanza that cleaned out our fridge pre-thanksgiving break, I was left with very little to work with for tonight's dinner and very little motivation to actually drag my butt to the grocery store. So at work I got to thinking about what to make (something I do most days). I knew I had some homemade pesto in the freezer, but also wanted to include some form of protein because we don't get much. I landed on egg sandwiches which I would model on one I had at Toscanini's the one time I went there for brunch (with Becca), a fried egg sandwich with spinach pesto, caramelized onions, and feta. After spending a few hours searching for a place to buy some good (hopefully sourdough, yum) sandwich bread on my very short commute home, I gave up and opted on using the pita in my fridge. The rest just came to me as I was cooking, and probably a little as I remembered the Tosci's sandwich. The carrots were also the only vegetable in my fridge, and my roommate really likes cooked carrots, and I like to hook her up with things she likes to eat where I can.

Also, sorry for the lame picture, I asked Becca to let me contribute after we finished eating, so all I have to show is the leftover carrots. I promise to take better pictures in the future, because nobody likes a cookbook without pictures.

4 eggs
2 pitas
1 large shallot, thinly sliced
balsamic vinegar
pesto ("recipe" below)
cooking spray
cheese (I used the little bit of monterey jack I had)

Cut pitas in half and place on baking sheet. Spray with cooking spray and sprinkle with S+P. It's important to cut it before toasting, because trying to slice toasted pita just results in a lot of unnecessary crumbling. Toast in oven at 400 degrees for 5-10 minutes, just keep an eye on it as you cook everything else.
Spray a skillet or saute pan with some cooking spray and then melt some butter in the pan too (I like cooking with butter and oil together, after I saw Julie and Julia I realized how deeply devoid of butter my life and cooking were). Add the shallot slices and saute for about 2 minutes, I then added some balsamic to help along the caramelization, I added a generous splash, which I thought was too much but it turned out fine. Continue to saute for 2-3 minutes or until they look soft and caramel and yummy.
In the meantime I had taken the pita out of the oven and sprinkled one half of each sandwich with some shredded jack, there was not much left in the bag so the retained heat of the bread and the shallots which I put directly on top of the cheese was enough to melt it, plus I forgot to put the cheese on before toasting the bread. I defrosted the pesto and spread it on the other half of each sandwich.
(My roommate and) I have a strong preference for scrambled eggs, so I haven't spent much time perfecting my other egg preparation method techniques. Beat the 4 eggs with a splash of milk and some S+P, then scramble in a pan sprayed and heated with both cooking spray and butter. I like my eggs light and fluffy so I let them sit in the pan for a minute before stirring then I start bringing in the edges as the cook and then keep it moving till everything looks cooked. Then I take it out of the pan as quickly as possible to prevent well done eggs. I put half of the eggs on top of the shallots in each sandwich, sprinkled them with some more S+P (I like it in and on my eggs) and closed the sandwiches with the pesto'ed top.

A little drippy (potentially from the milk in the eggs or the loose pesto) but pretty delicious. And my always very kind and complimentary roommate, Ruby, says they were very good.

Roasted Carrots

half a bag of baby carrots, halved lengthwise
3 scallions, halved lengthwise then chopped
olive oil
juice of one lemon
chopped parsley

Place halved carrots and chopped scallions in a pan and drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with S+P and a little bit of sugar. Roast at 400 degrees for about 20 minutes.
When the carrots look nicely roasted squeeze lemon juice and sprinkle chopped parsley over them and toss.

Next time I think I would go with the roasty scallion flavor (as the scallions cook and "brown" a lot faster than the carrots) OR the fresh lemon parsley flavor, but they were still yummy.
Ruby says: I really liked the carrots.

garlic cloves
toasted walnuts
parmesan cheese
extra virgin olive oil

As you will probably learn (and despise me for), I'm like a grandma from the old country when it comes to measurements, I don't record them or pay attention to them, ever. I have no excuse, my grandmothers are both American, but I will try to work on including measurements.

Pulse to rough chop basil leaves in a food processor (mine is mini), add garlic and chop fine, add nuts and drizzle in olive oil if you can. I can't because the holes on my processor lid are too small, so I just pour it in in increments until the sauce comes together. I add the cheese last because I saw someone do it that way once but it doesn't matter. Honestly, I'm sure you could just throw everything in at once and blend it up.

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