Friday, March 23, 2012

Whole Foods Friday: Breakfast, Lunch, and ... uh ... Dessert

Breakfast

I had no idea what I was going to do with it, but when I saw Skillet Bacon Spread on a shelf at Whole Foods, I knew I had to try it.

So far, I've tried it in a couple dishes, but I really, really like it on sandwiches. It adds a punch of bacon flavor along with some sweetness.

The idea for this sandwich started with grilled cheese with tomato, but then I decided that scrambled egg would put it over the top,

This isn't a light breakfast, by any means. That's okay. Lunch is a little lighter.

Pumped-up Grilled Cheese

2 slices bread
1 tablespoon Skillet Bacon Spread
1 egg, scrambled
1 slice tomato
1 slice mild cheddar cheese
Butter, as needed

Spread the bacon spread on one slice of bread. Top with the scrambled egg, then the tomato. Top with the cheese. Add the second slice of bread on top. Butter the outsides of the bread. Heat a skillet and place the sandwich in the skillet. Cook until one side is nicely toasted, then flip it and cook it on the second side.

Serve hot.

Lunch

I have to admit that the weather influences my shopping. Since it was a bright, warm, sunny day, I couldn't help thinking about springtime foods. Sure, there's nothing growing here yet, and we could still see some snow. but I wanted a spring-like salad.

The heirloom tomatoes were calling to me, and a chose a bright orange one. The scallions (aka spring onions) looked fresh. Then I found some baby cucumbers.

I decided to make a pasta salad  I started with some tri-color orzo, but in the end there were more vegetables in the salad than pasta.

Springtime Pasta Salad

1/2 cup tri-color orzo
Juice of 1 lemon, divided
1 scallion, thinly sliced
1 baby cucumber, thinly sliced
6 marinated baby artichoke hearts, quartered
1 tomato, diced
1 fire-roasted red pepper, diced
4 basil leaves, sliced in thin ribbons
1/2 cup pearl-sized fresh mozzarella balls
Salt and pepper, to taste
2 tablespoons olive oil

Cook the pasta until al dente, then drain and rinse it, and put it a medium bowl. While it is still slightly warm, drizzle the juice of 1/2 a lemon over the pasta.

Add the remaining ingredients, and toss to combine. Taste for seasoning add more salt, pepper, or lemon juice, as desired.

Refrigerate until serving time. Serve chilled or at room temperature.

Dessert

Dinner's up to you, but I like a little sweet something to finish off the meal. You can use whatever ratio of creme fraiche to berries as you like. If you don't manage to use all the syrup, it would be nice over ice cream or drizzled over cake.

Strawberries with Creme Fraiche

1 cup cherry juice
1/4 cup orange liqueur
1/4 cup sugar
Creme fraiche
Strawberries

Put the cherry juice, liqueur, and sugar in a saucepan. Cook, stirring as needed, until the syrup has reduced to 1/4 its original volume and has thickened.

Let the syrup come to room temperature, then refrigerate.

Serve the cream under or on top of the berries - your choice - then drizzle with the syrup.

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