Sunday, June 7, 2015

May (in June) Supper Club - Late Spring and Early Summer Ingredients Brunch

The theme was late spring/early summer ingredients for a brunch, and based on the dishes we cooked, I think that means eggs, fresh veggies, and fruit.

To drink, I made cold-brewed Iced Tea and Fresh Lemonade.  We made Arnold Palmers (half tea and half lemonade) from the 2 beverages.  Katharina also brought Coffee.

For the main course I made a hybrid of french toast and bread pudding. I also baked some croissants from Trader Joe's and served some homemade jams (Jams not made by me, one was a cranberry orange marmalade from Katharina, the fig apricot, and plum jams all came from other friends.)

 
The next Supper Club (July?) will be hosted by Katharina.




Iced Tea Recipe
5 Earl Grey tea bags earl grey
5 Black tea bags
8 cups Water
  1. Add tea bags to water and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Remove tea bags.
  3. Strain tea into a pitcher and chill or serve.


Fresh Lemonade
6 Lemons or enough for 1 cup juice
7 cups Water
1 cup Sugar (I used 1/2 cup stevia/sugar blend form C & H)

  1. Juice the lemons to get 1 cup juice.  Reserve rinds and excess pulp.
  2.  Put juice in small saucepan and add sugar.  Heat on medium until sugar dissolves. Take off heat and cool.
  3. Bring 7 cups water to a boil, then add reserved rinds/pulp and let steep for 10 minutes.
  4. Strain Liquid into a container, press gently on rinds with a spoon to get extra flavor.
  5. Mix lemon juice and strained water in a pitcher and cool/chill until ready to serve.  Adjust sugar, lemon, or water to taste.

Baked Apple-Cinnamon French Toast

Makes: 12 servings
Active Time:
Total Time:

Ingredients

  • 3 cups nonfat milk
  • 2 cups pasteurized liquid egg whites, such as Egg Beaters
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1-pound loaf sliced whole-wheat bread
  • 1 cup chopped dried apples, (3 ounces) - her I used fresh apples.  I added 2 large Fuji apples, chopped.
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg (I fresh ground this)
  • 1 tablespoon confectioners' sugar (I forgot to add this)

Preparation

  1. Whisk milk, egg whites, honey, vanilla and salt in a large bowl.
  2. Trim crusts off 8 bread slices and set aside. Cut the crusts and the remaining bread into 1-inch pieces. Toss with dried apples, raisins, cinnamon and nutmeg in another large bowl.
  3. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Transfer the bread mixture to the pan. Lay the reserved crustless slices evenly on top, trimming to fit. Whisk the milk mixture one more time, then pour evenly over the bread. Press the bread down with the back of a wooden spoon, making sure it’s evenly moist. Cover with parchment paper, then foil, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  5. Bake the casserole, covered, for 40 minutes. Uncover and continue baking until puffed, set and lightly browned, about 20 minutes more. Let stand for 10 minutes; dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve.

Tips and Notes

  • Make Ahead Tip: Prepare through Step 3 and refrigerate for up to 1 day.

Kim made Shakshuka, an Israeli dish.  I started out by using this food52.com recipe, which looked interesting because of the cooked farro.




Shakshuka with Grains and Feta
Serves 2 (I doubled the sauce ingredients, but used 6 eggs)

1 tablespoon olive oil
1/2 small yellow onion, diced
Salt and pepper
16 ounces tomato or marinara sauce
1 medium tomato, chopped
Pinch of cayenne (optional)
4 eggs
1 big handful of greens, chopped (I used Trader Joe's mixed baby greens - chard, spinach and kale)
2 cups cooked grains (I used farro)
2 ounces feta, crumbled

1. Sauté onion in olive oil with salt and pepper in a medium-sized pan with a high lip for a few minutes, over medium heat, until soft and fragrant.

2. Mix in sauce and tomato (and cayenne if using) and cook to heat everything through. Lastly, add the chopped greens and fold in.

3. With a spoon, make four little pockets in the saucy mess into which you can crack the eggs. Crack them in, then sprinkle a little salt and pepper on each egg, and drag the whites through the sauce. Don’t break the yolk. You know this. Mama didn’t raise no fool.

4. Put a lid over the pan and let cook until the whites are just set, about 4 minutes. Pile some of your cooked grains at the bottom of a bowl, then top with big scoops of saucy mess and an egg. Add a little crumbled feta. Devour.

But, when I tasted the sauce, it was too bland for my taste.  The shakshuka I have had before had more kick.  I went to David Leibovitz's blog and used his recipe to doctor up the food52 one.
http://www.davidlebovitz.com/2013/02/shakshuka-recipe-eggs/
(I would recommend just using his recipe in the future)

To the sauce I added:
3 cloves garlic, peeled and put through a garlic press
1 chile pepper (or to taste), stemmed, sliced in half and deseeded, finely diced/minced
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 teaspoon paprika, smoked or sweet (I used smoked)
3/4 teaspoon ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon turmeric

I also followed David Leibovitz's instructions for individual servings, starting with a layer of farro on the bottom, tomato sauce, making a well in the center and cracking the egg into it and then adding more sauce to cover the egg a little.  I baked them at 375° for 20 minutes to get the eggs on the firm side.


Katharina made an Asparagus and Bacon quiche.



Sara made a Zucchini and Eggs dish (maybe there is an Italian name for this such as Zucchini e Uovo?).



Rebecca made a Berry and Yogurt Parfait.



There was no real recipe for these easy parfaits!  I used about 3 cups of 2% plain Greek yogurt.  I mixed 2-3 tablespoons of lemon curd into the yogurt to sweeten it a little bit.  I chopped up 1 cup or so of strawberries and mixed those with some blueberries and blackberries.  Layer the yogurt and the berries in 1/2 pint jars and then sprinkle the tops with granola.  You should get about 6 parfaits.