Eat Good Flowers

good food and the simple pleasures that make life worth living

0 notes

Why not?

A friend of mine asked me for ideas on how to make a savory oatmeal without it turning into a “goopy disaster.” Well, why the hell not, I said to myself. So I decided to try it the next morning with whatever I had on hand (I always have oatmeal in the pantry…for cookies. I don’t know why else I would always have it ready to go).

Truth be told I actually love oatmeal, but usually I’m not the slightest bit hungry in the morning so I just have my espresso… and then another and another and I begin my day at the office (by office I of course mean working from home at my kitchen counter in my PJs). The idea of a savory oatmeal was inspiring, but it didn’t sound too appealing on its own so I decided to whip up some eggs to go with it.

Oatmeal is a grain that develops starch as it cooks, much like risotto (but much faster). And that’s it. It’s up to you where you want to go from there. You should simply consider oatmeal as the starch portion of your breakfast and work from there. Topping it with a sunny-side up egg, a little olive oil, and some fresh scallions would be delicious. Stir in some good sausages for a heartier meal. Experiment a little and I’m sure you can come up with something delicious. I had eggs, thyme, and goat cheese in my fridge, so I decided to use those. It came out great.

A note on oatmeal: while I must say I use oatmeal more for cookies than for breakfast, when I do make it in the morning I make it in the microwave. I know, I know, I seem far too stuck up to ever cook something in the microwave, but I have cooked oatmeal many times and it always cooks best and most evenly when it is cooked in the microwave. I use old fashioned rolled oats with almost twice the amount of water as oatmeal, by volume, and cook it for two minutes and 45 seconds. It will come out perfect every time. Just make sure you let it cool for a minute before eating because it needs that time to soak up the rest of the water.

A note on eggs: I highly recommend buying organic eggs, especially if you are cooking them to eat straight (as opposed to baking with them). My absolute favorite are the Country Hen brand of eggs. I know they are more expensive, but if you’re going to buy anything organic it should be your eggs because they have by far the greatest difference between conventional and organic. Organic eggs are much more flavorful and are usually fresher, so for $2 more you can have a significantly better meal, times 6 (assuming 2 eggs plus a side makes a meal).

Oatmeal with Thyme, Goat Cheese, and Sunny Eggs

(Serves 1)

1/2 cup oatmeal

1 cup water

1/4 tsp kosher salt

1/2 tsp chopped thyme (or just picked and pressed in the palm of your hand, if you’re in a hurry), plus extra for garnish

1 tbsp butter

2 eggs

Goat cheese (optional)

Preheat the broiler (if electric) to high and move a baking rack to the top shelf. If your broiler is gas, it does not need to be turned on in advance.

Combine the oatmeal, water, salt, and thyme in a small bowl and cook on high in the microwave for 2 minutes and 45 seconds. In the meantime heat the butter in a small, oven-proof saute pan on the stove. Carefully crack the eggs into a small bowl to keep the yolks in tact. Once the butter just starts to bubble add the eggs and transfer the saute pan to the oven on the top rack. Cook 4 minutes.

When the oatmeal finishes cooking, remove it from the microwave, stir to make sure all the ingredients are evenly combined, and taste for seasonings. If it tastes very bland add a little more salt. 

When the eggs are finished remove them from the oven and immediately transfer them to your plate so they don’t overcook. Add the oatmeal and crumble goat cheese over the eggs and oatmeal. Sprinkle on a little fleur de sel, or kosher salt, on the eggs and serve. 

0 notes

My camera worked much better in the daylight when I made a leftover burger with an arugula salad. A quick, simple, delicious lunch… too bad Jeffrey wasn’t home

My camera worked much better in the daylight when I made a leftover burger with an arugula salad. A quick, simple, delicious lunch… too bad Jeffrey wasn’t home

1 note

Mistake Burgers

Almost every night I cook for my roommate, Fish (or Jeffrey Garten, as I have taken to calling him), and last night I sent him to the store on his way back from class to pick up the ingredients for beef stew, his favorite dish yet. Well apparently his phone call with his mother was infinitely more important than the 1lb of whole chuck (beef) that I needed for the stew, because he was not paying attention and returned with a pound of ground chuck. Well, back out he went to get the second round of beef and we decided to have burgers the next night. (the beef stew was delicious).

There are a lot of ways to make a burger: some buy pre-made patties and just grill them up, some mix ground beef with an ensemble of dried seasonings, and some people insist on grinding their own meat. While grinding my own meat for burgers sounds like a boatload of fun, I like to keep things a little simpler than that so I just buy really good (grass-fed, no hormones added) beef, between 80 and 85% lean, depending on what I can find.  I mix it with a little dijon mustard, minced fresh thyme, worcestershire, minced garlic, a splash of olive oil, and plenty of salt and pepper. I find that this combination brings out the best of the meat flavor and elevates the meal to something more than just another burger. Top it with a good cheddar cheese, caramelized onions, and a little arugula in a toasted bun and it just doesn’t get any better. Well, the roasted fingerling potatoes with white truffle oil served on the side don’t hurt.

The key to cooking burgers is the same as any other meat. Let them rest out of the refrigerator, pre-seasoned, to come to room temperature. Then cook them on high heat (stove or grill) until they are browned, and flip ONCE. If you cook them on the stove you will probably need to finish them in the oven, unless you like them rare, but that depends on how hot your stove is. Also, if cooking them inside, start with a very small amount of oil in the pan, and use paper towels to clean up most of the oil and fat in the pan before putting them in the oven (unless you enjoy opening the door to a cloud of smoke and dealing with screaming fire alarms while your burgers get cold, in which case leave the fat). Cooking them in a panini press works great too, just don’t press down on them while cooking.

While it will be delicious cooked to any preference (mine tonight were a little overcooked cause I let them sit in the pan a little too long, so sue me), they are best served medium rare. Next time you make burgers try adding these seasonings, and anything else that you might like, and let me know what you think. If you find something that makes it even better, post a note so I can try (by which I mean I can offer a new variation to “Jeffrey” to see what he thinks).

P.S. I’m sorry about the picture quality. My phone camera was taking fuzzy pictures today.