Monday, May 12, 2014

Breakfast Rice Bowls


If you scroll through my Instagram feed, among the photos of cats and feet and plants and selfies, you will find pictures of eggs. Fried eggs, on top of stuff. Because Fried Eggs on Top of Stuff is possibly my favorite meal ever. Wondering what to eat for breakfast? Find those leftovers, mix 'em all together, and put a fried egg on it. Ta-daaa! Time to eat.


The "stuff" part of the equation varies depending on what I already have on hand -- toast, ramen, black beans, waffles if I'm feeling ambitious. But the best, hands down, is rice. I've been eating eggs and rice for as long as I can remember, and is quite possibly the reason for my love of runny egg yolk. Nothing sops up that liquid gold like steaming hot rice. Nothing reminds me of breakfast at home, made lovingly by Dad, like eggs and rice.
Lately I've been making brown rice on Saturday mornings -- the super easy frozen Trader Joe's kind, where you just pop the bag in the microwave for three minutes and it's done -- and keeping it on hand for weekend breakfasts or when I'm on my own for weeknight dinner. This morning, I tossed the rice with leftover steak, mushrooms and green beans from last night's dinner, and topped with -- you guessed it -- a fried egg. I took a quick iPhone pic of my breakfast rice bowl (what I've started calling these things in my head lately) and started shoveling it in my mouth, which now that I think about it, is a very accurate description of how I typically eat eggs and rice.
And you guys. It was so good -- enough for me to start thinking, half way through, "I should blog about this. I should take a picture with my camera. How come I never take pictures of these things?" But then I was done eating, because even food bloggers hit a point of no return when so engrossed in a delicious meal that no photo op is going to pull her away.
But it was good enough for me to pull out the laptop, even though it's 70 degrees out right now and I had plans to hit the garden center and pull weeds and rearrange my day lilies in the front yard, to write about it. I realize that most of you already know that eggs and rice is a delicious thing, but I thought, maybe some of you don't? Maybe you've seen other recipes and photos but decided to just stick with eggs and toast? I am here to tell you to make this already, and eat it, and to give you some suggestions for what to add (STEAK! STEAK! STEAK!).
Breakfast Rice Bowls*
I feel kind of silly writing a recipe for this, since really all it involves is scooping some rice in a bowl, mixing in whatever leftovers you find in your fridge, zapping it in the microwave and topping with a fried egg (or two). That's it! But in case you're unsure of what to add in your bowl, below are some suggestions. As I mentioned above, the steak + mushrooms + green beans combo I had was really, really good. Which reminds me -- I have to tell you about cooking mushrooms (or any veggie, or any food, for that matter) in a cast iron skillet. Stay tuned!

What you need:
leftover rice 
1-2 eggs, fried to your liking

Possible additions:
Leftover meats - STEAK! Ham, turkey, rotisserie chicken. Sausage. Whatever you used for taco night (ground beef! shredded chicken! carnitas!). Shrimp, salmon. Or hey, I bet you could mix in that sushi you couldn't finish the night before and that'd be good, too.
Beans - black beans, white beans, chickpeas, edamame.
AVOCADO - It is a happy morning indeed when I have rice, avocado and eggs all on hand. 
Veggies - The asparagus you grilled with the steak would be perfect. Or any vegetable that you served with dinner the night before. Also - corn, tomatoes, mushrooms, broccoli, green beans, green onions. If I don't have any cooked veggies in the fridge, sometimes I'll quickly saute something in olive oil and set aside. It helps to cut up the veggies in small, bite-size pieces.
Hot sauce - I like Sriracha, Valentina or Frank's.
*Can also be eaten for lunch or dinner. :)

Friday, May 2, 2014

Weekend in Austin #keepleslieweird



We drove through winding dirt roads, 10 of us singing along to the Spice Girls and Ace of Base and TLC, stopping at wineries to enjoy the views of Texas wine country. We bought a couple of bottles at one stop, and Di told the infamous story of Leslie's trip to the emergency room after busting her chin open while doing the Worm.



One night ended right back where it began -- at Magnolia Cafe, a 24/7 diner where we had tacos and enchiladas for brunch, and pancakes and eggs for a late-late-night snack.



A dragon, a galaxy, a cat, a country bumpkin, a sloth, two '80s chicks, a flower girl, a cat and a bee celebrated Eeyore's birthday at Pease Park. The dragon was serenaded by a man passing by with a guitar. A human pyramid was formed by the May Pole. The sloth got pulled into a giant drum circle.



There was beef brisket and spicy collards, Shiner Ruby Redbirds, white cheddar cheesy puffs, sea scallops and quail and risotto, mimosas, cookies, giant turkey legs, wine.



We danced. Then two very determined pedicab drivers pedaled six drunk ladies up one big hill on South Congress Avenue. We passed by a man riding a white horse on the sidewalk, and when we reached the top, sang "Happy Birthday Marriage" to a certain curly blonde bride-to-be.


These are the scenes that take place when you get 14 women together, with friendships that span up to 30 years, and put them in a house in Austin, Texas, with an entire weekend to do whatever they want. We celebrated my friend Leslie, who is getting married in August to a man named Jens. Les is the kind of girl who grows kale in her front yard, raises chickens in her backyard, and when asked who her celebrity crush is, responds: Heidi Swanson. She also speaks fluent Spanish, learned how to make authentic paella while living in Spain, and will take your boyfriend to the ER when he breaks his collarbone while walking out of a White Sox game, despite his insistence that he's fine.
All this to say, it's good to have a Leslie in your life. Jens is a lucky man.


Where we stayed:
Rented a house in South Congress through airbnb.

Where we ate:

Where we drank:

Other activities: