avocado

Southern Style Eggs Benedict

It's Sunday morning, and nothing beats a home cooked brunch with the family. This Southern style Eggs Benedict brings a creamy, decadent, and savory twist to the traditional. Bake a loaf of corn bread, top it with a poached egg, some peppers, onions, and avocados, and then homemade Hollandaise Sauce- it's heavenly and it's an accomplishment. 

SouthernEggsBenedict.jpg

Southern Eggs Benedict

..a Southern canvas

Some challenges to Eggs Benedict: poaching the eggs and making the Hollandaise Sauce. I'll reveal some tips that will make you swoon for some more. Trust me when you get this right, you'll waltz right into a twirl and two-step. 

Servings: 6

Ingredients:
For the Hollandaise Sauce:

  • 6 egg yolks (keep the whites for an omelette for the next morning!) 
  • 3/4 cup (1.5 sticks) butter, melted 
  • 1 tsp cayenne pepper
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice

1 loaf corn bread, cut into 6 slices (My favorite: Trader Joes Cornbread mix
12 eggs, poached
4 tbsp vinegar
1 tbsp olive oil
1.5 large red onion, sliced
1 green bell pepper, sliced
2 avocados, sliced
salt and pepper

Method:

I used the Trader Joe's Cornbread Mix and prepared it according to the package instructions. 

In the meantime, bring a wide pot of water and the vinegar to a boil.

While the water is boiling, heat a separate skillet with the olive oil. Place the onions and sauté till softened. Add the sliced green bell pepper and cook for another 5 minutes. Season with salt and crushed black pepper. 

The blender hollandaise sauce is SO easy- no double boiler and no chance of eggs curdling. In the container of a blender, combine the six egg yolks, lemon juice, cayenne pepper, and salt and pepper. Cover and blend for about 10 seconds. Set the blender on high speed, and slowly add the melted and hot butter to the egg yolk mixture in a thin stream. The blender should remain on the whole time, and you should be careful to pour in the butter very slowly. It will thicken almost immediately. Keep blending for about 30 seconds, and then keep aside, warm. 

Now it's time to begin poaching the eggs. Crack the fresh eggs individually in a small bowl- it makes the process easier. With a large spoon, stir the boiling water in a large, circular motion. When there is a tornado (aka whirpool in the water), slowly tip the bowl into the water to release the egg, one by one. The swirling allows the egg to wrap around itself as it cooks, keeping it together. Cook the eggs for about 2 1/2 to 3 minutes. Once cooked, transfer out using a slotted spoon on a paper-towel lined plate. You can trim the wispy edges using the edge of a spoon or small knife. 

Place a slice of the corn bread on the plate. Place two eggs per serving on top of the bread. Top with a generous spoonful of the onions and pepper mixture. Add a few slices of avocado, and then top with a heaping of the Hollandaise sauce. Sprinkle with some salt and pepper, if desired. 

Note: Ensure the eggs are hot and the Hollandaise sauce is warm before serving. If the eggs have cooled too much, before you're ready to serve, you can plunge the already poached eggs back into the hot water for a few seconds. Make sure to drain the excess water on a paper towel just before serving. In addition, keep the Hollandaise sauce warm by placing the blender container in a pan of hot water. You can store the leftover sauce in an airtight container in the fridge for next time! 

Enjoy! 

Avocado Ice Pops

Blend only five ingredients, and you've got yourself a healthy and refreshing treat!

Click to View Video

Yield: 4 Ice Pops

Ingredients: 
1/2 ripe avocado
1 tablespoon pure honey
1/2 cup coconut milk
1 1/2 tablespoon lime juice
a pinch of salt

Garnish:
1/2 cup chocolate chips (or melting chips)
1/8 cup shredded coconut

Directions:

  1. Blend avocado, honey, milk, lime juice, and salt until creamy and smooth.
  2. Pour into popsicle stick molds and insert popsicle sticks. (I used my Zoku Duo Quick Pop Maker
  3. Melt chocolate over a double boiler until smooth. Dip frozen ice pops and coat with chocolate. Top with shredded coconut.

Note* If you do not have popsicle stick molds, you can pour avocado mixture into an ice cube tray. Cover tray with wax paper, Press N' Seal, or plastic wrap. Insert popsicle sticks in each ice cube slot. The wrap should hold the stick in place. Freeze until firm. 

 

Beet and Feta Salad

This recipe was inspired from a meal at Wonderland on Royal Caribbean's Quantum of the Seas cruise ship. This salad is super easy to prepare and is full of flavor. Candied walnuts complement the salad and a mustard balsamic vinaigrette adds freshness. 

Ingredients:

3 medium beets, scrubbed and trimmed
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
3 tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 package of spinach salad greens (or use any greens of your choice)
1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese
1/2 avocado, cubed

1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
3 tablespoons dijon mustard
salt and crushed black pepper to taste

Directions:

  1. Place beets in a saucepan, and fill with enough water to cover them. Bring to a boil and cook for 20 minutes, until tender. Drain and then cool. Cut into cubes and set aside. 
  2. In a small skillet, place walnuts and cook on medium-low heat. Heat until walnuts are slightly toasted and then add the brown sugar. Warm until the sugar beings to melt. Remove from heat and coat walnuts with sugar.
  3. In a small bowl, whisk together the balsamic vinegar and mustard. Add salt and pepper to taste. 
  4. In a large bowl, mix spinach greens, cubed beets and cubed avocado. Sprinkle the candied walnuts, feta cheese, and drizzle the dressing on top. Serve and enjoy!

Guacamole Dip

Click to View Video

Description:
A rich avocado dip with veggies and spices is a great snack or an appetizer for a party. Dip tortilla or nacho chips in the guacamole and savor the wonderful Mexican taste!

Preparation Time:
10 minutes

Ingredients:

2 avocadoes
1 onion chopped
1 tomato chopped
1 green chilly cut into small pieces
3 cloves garlic minced
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon red chilly powder
½ teaspoon crushed black pepper powder
1 lime/lemon
small bunch of cilantro

Directions:

Spoon out the inside of the 2 avocados and add to a mixing bowl. Mash the avocado until the big chunks are mashed. Do not mash too much otherwise guacamole will become too mushy.

Chop and dice the onion and tomato and add to the avocado.
Mix the avocado, onion, and tomato.

Now add the green chilly which is cut into small pieces and the three cloves garlic minced.
To that, add the salt, red chilly powder, and black pepper. These spices can be altered to suit your taste.
After the spices have been added, put about ½- 3/4 the juice of the lime or lemon.

Now mix everything together. Put in the refrigerator until serving time.
Serve with tortilla/nacho chips. Enjoy!