Friday, March 26, 2010

Busy Mom's Arsenal: Country Breakfast

Breakfast for dinner.  Growing up in my house, it was a special treat.  Country breakfast was one of those treats.  Eggs, potatoes and onions.  That's it.  Easy peasy.  What I didn't know until later in life was that country breakfast was a budget stretching meal.  You see, we didn't have much money when I was growing up, so we had to be frugal about our meals.  Country breakfast was cheap.  So my mom, the crafty woman that she is, turned it into a special treat.  Now, when I'm stressed or too tired to think about what to make for dinner, I usually make this dish.  Trust me.  You NEED Country Breakfast in your arsenal for dinner on busy nights. 

But who wants to crack a bunch of eggs at the end of a long day?  I sure don't.  So here's my secret to making this dish even easier and with less points/calories:  Egg Beaters.  Never tried them? You should, my friend.  You'll find them next to the eggs in the refrigerated section of your grocery store.  Here's the one disclaimer:  don't expect the normal richness of an egg.  They are lower in fat, being made of mostly egg whites, so they end up lacking some of the richness that the yolk brings to a traditional egg dish.  But that's quite alright if you are going to put other ingredients in them.  However, if you are craving a fried egg, Egg Beaters will not suffice.  Any other time, though, they are great.  I've made country breakfast with regular eggs and Egg Beaters.  I must say that I prefer the Egg Beaters version, becuase you get more volume for less points.  Try 'em. 

One word about the potatoes.  I usually make country breakfast when there are leftover baked potatoes in the fridge.  I just pop a few extra potatoes in to cook the night before, in the hopes that we'll do country breakfast the next night.  However, if you don't have any cooked potatoes, never fear.  Just nuke them.  Prick them a couple times with a fork and nuke them for 3-5 minutes at a time, until they are tender.  Doesn't take long at all. 

So, let me show you a blueprint of the basic dish.  I made this for two, but you can add more or less.  You can also add whatever you want to it.  It only gets better.  Trust me.   

Serves:  2
Serving size:  1/2 of the dish
Points per serving:  4

  • 1 medium onion, diced fine
  • 2 small baked potatoes (approx 4 oz each), chopped, skin on
  • 2 oz lean ham deli meat, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon Cajun seasoning (or seasonded salt, or just plain old salt and pepper)
  • 1 cup Egg Beaters
  1. Heat a non-stick skillet and spray with cooking spray. 
  2. Add onion and baked potatoes to the pan and allow everything to heat through, the onions to turn translucent, and the potatoes to get a bit of brown on them.
  3. Season the potatoes with whatever seasoning you've chosen.
  4. Add chopped ham and allow it to warm through and get a bit crisp on the edges.
  5. Add the Egg Beaters and stir the mixture.  You may want to lower the heat for this step.  Keep stirring until the Egg Beaters have come to the point of doneness you prefer.  
  6. Serve with ketchup or Siracha sauce (like me) and some toast. 
  7. Enjoy.
Optional Add-ins:
  • 1 bell pepper, diced fine
  • 2-3 cups of chopped spinach, fresh or frozen
  • Cheese of any sort, melted on top (be sure and add points)
  • Any leftover cooked veggies you have in the fridge
  • Breakfast sausage (once again, add points)
  • My favorite: feta cheese (it adds a saltiness and general interest to the eggs.  Very yummy!)
  • Salsa to make a mexican type dish
Country Breakfast

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