Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Southwest Flavored Egg Bake

Are you in the mood for brunch? It seems like spring does that to us somehow. Maybe it’s the success of Easter celebrations. Who knows? But this baked egg dish is a great one for brunch, or for breakfast, or any meal, really.

This dish is quite simple, involving an easy mixture of eggs and cheese. I gave mine a boost with pickled jalapeno chiles (the original recipe called for canned green chiles, which would also be quite good.) I also added cilantro and what’s pretty much my favorite spice, smoked paprika.

You could change up the flavors however you’d like. I would leave in the cottage cheese and some other cheese in the same proportion as they are here, because the texture is just right. You could substitute a mixture of chili powder and cumin for the smoked paprika. You could also go to a different geographical location by swapping the cheddar for Gruyere or Parmesan, then substituting fresh herbs for the spices. You could even minimalize and make it very plain.

This delicious egg bake goes together quickly, and, while it needs a little over half an hour to bake, you could get some other tasty things together during that time if you do decide to take on brunch. Just serve it with a muffin, scone or toast if you want a quieter breakfast, or go with salad and fried potatoes on the side for lunch or supper. I was a little surprised by how easy, delicious and endlessly adaptable this dish is. I might just adopt a habit of making brunch!

Southwest Flavored Egg Bake
Adapted from Rachel Ray Every Day magazine

Feel free to substitute flavors to your heart’s desire.

5 large eggs
2 tablespoons melted butter
¼ cup flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 cup cottage cheese
½ cup shredded cheddar cheese
2 tablespoons minced pickled jalapeno chiles
½ cup chopped cilantro

1. Preheat oven to 350 F. Spray an 8-inch square baking dish with nonstick cooking spray or grease it with butter.

2. In a medium-size bowl, whisk the eggs until well-beaten. Whisk in the butter. Whisk in the flour, baking powder, salt, and smoked paprika. Stir in the cottage cheese, cheddar cheese, jalapenos and the cilantro. Pour into the prepared baking dish.

3. Bake at 350 F for about 35 minutes or until the eggs are set.

Makes 4 main dish servings (or 8-12 smaller bites). Leftovers warm nicely in the microwave.

One year ago: Hazelnut Latte Muffins

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