Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Scramble For Dinner

For the last few months, JM and I have been in and out of town so much, that I haven't really had the time or inclination to shop and stock the fridge.  Which means two things: We ended up drinking a lot of tap water, and I found myself trying to scrape together dinners from whatever happened to be left in the fridge. I'm always up for a good culinary challenge, but there's only so much you can do with a couple shallots, frozen spinach and a chunk of goat cheese (for example). Happily, the most disparate elements can almost always be united with the help of one magical, delicious ingredient: the egg. I know I write a lot of posts about eggs, but that's because I write posts about my life, and I eat a lot of eggs in real life. And this is one eggy topic I haven't covered yet — the basic scramble. More forgiving than an omelet, faster than a fritatta, the scramble is the humble cousin of more complicated egg dishes. This is the sort of thing that anyone can cook — even people who can't cook — and have dinner on the table in ten minutes.  And the best part is, you can throw in the kitchen sink from whatever is left in your fridge, and come up with surprisingly lovely combinations. Obviously, this isn't the sort of dinner you make when you have company coming over (unless it's me coming over — I'll be psyched), but when it's just you and your roommate/husband/girlfriend/dog/Glee rerun, there's nothing better. As a bonus, this meal is free... or only costs about $2 per serving (depending on how you look at it).

Here are some random ingredients that taste great in a scramble:
Vegetables: Tomatoes, Onions, Shallots, Zucchini, Garlic, Bell Peppers, Spinach, Mushrooms, Leeks.
Meat: Sausage, Ham, Smoked Salmon, or Bacon.
Herbs: Parsley, Basil, Chives, Dill, Sage, Thyme, Oregano

Cheese: Feta, Cheddar, Queso Blanco, Swiss, Goat cheese, Blue Cheese.

1. Chop up your vegetable and meat ingredients, and saute them in olive oil in a skillet, over medium heat, until cooked through.
2. In the meantime, break eggs into a bowl (I usually factor 2-4 per person, depending on how hungry my eaters are). Add chopped herbs, salt, and pepper to taste.  Stir briskly to combine with a whisk (or a fork). Pour eggs directly into the skillet with the other ingredients.
3. Allow the eggs to set for a few seconds, then use a wooden spoon to pull the cooked eggs off the bottom of the pan, and allow the raw eggs to take their place. (Ergo, "scramble").
4. When eggs are cooked through, sprinkle on grated cheese, (and more herbs, if desired) and divide onto plates,  serving with toast and/or a green salad... if you happen to have them around.

Photo Credit: Bon Appetit


Mister Sharaf said...

mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm :)

Unknown said...

Moonlight Breakfast! A favorite in our house. Everyone loves it, and, as you know, it's great when you're exhausted and the pantry is empty.

squidravioli said...

I truly love eggs!

Sue said...

Fabulous! I love eggs for dinner ( or any other time ). I made homemade Egg McMuffins last night. Sooooo tasty!!! :)