Tuesday, June 10, 2014

The return of lie-ins and lazy breakfasts

One of the things I missed most when I was working in the café was long, leisurely weekend breakfasts. There is little that I love as much as starting a weekend day with a multi-coursed breakfast. In my case, it usually includes nut-filled muesli with some chopped banana, berries and nut milk; something egg-y; toasted bread with almond butter and honey; and lots of green tea.

I've been going through a mourning period for the café lately. Someone else opened a new café there last month and I've found myself envying them the incomparable excitement of creating a space that is all about welcoming people and giving them good things to eat and drink.
But whenever I've found myself hankering for the café too much, I remind myself of all I have gained by leaving it behind and that includes my new-found appreciation of weekend breakfasts...

I've been experimenting with different breakfast dishes these past few weeks and this is a simple one I've made and enjoyed on several occasions now.

Ingredients (serves four people or two especially hungry ones)
250 grams fresh spinach leaves 
4 slices of smoked salmon
4 best-quality eggs*
1/4 teaspoon salt 

You will also need ramekins or a muffin tin

  • Preheat your oven to 180 degrees Celsius/350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  • Sprinkle the salt over the spinach and cook in your preferred way. I cook mine in a steamer over boiling water for seven minutes or until wilted.
  • Let the spinach cool a little and once you can handle it, use your hands to squeeze out all excess water.
  • Divide the spinach between your four ramekins or four sections of your muffin tray.
  • Lay the smoked salmon on top.

  • Break an egg into each of the four ramekins or sections of the muffin tray, on top of the spinach and salmon.
  • Cook in the oven for ten to twelve minutes or until set.
  • Use a knife to cut the egg away from the edges of the ramekin or muffin tin.
  • Lift the egg-y muffin out of the tin using a dessert spoon (you don't want to break that runny yolk just yet) and place on a slice of warm toast.
  • Dig deliciously in.
*Anyone following the OMS (Overcoming Multiple Sclerosis) diet will have been advised to avoid eggs as they contain up to 8g of saturated fat per egg - which is a lot when you're supposed to keep your saturated fat intake below 10g a day and never exceed 20g. However, I have realised that eggs are the foods I miss most when following this diet (much more than chocolate, to my eternal surprise) and so on the days when I have an egg, I make sure I don't eat anything else that contains a significant amount of saturated fat. Eggs offer so much nutritional goodness - especially if they come from free-range hens that are allowed to roam and eat as they please - that I feel justified in eating them once or twice a week. Anyway, my luxurious weekend mornings simply wouldn't be the same without them!

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