With 2015 we are starting several new strands throughout our PG world, and one of the new areas we are building on is our Culinary Gentleman series with our Suited Chef strand. The Suited Chef is on hand to cover all manner of eventualities from dining alone to whipping a romantic meal, or cooking up a storm for when the rugby is on. We mix recipes with stories and look to cover everything from the basics to more complex fair. We believe, like Chef Gusteau in Disney’s Ratatouille, that anyone can cook and we will work on that principle here.
It is said that you should breakfast like a king and that you should never eat alone. I realise that we are mixing our sayings, but breakfast is a great meal that should be shared. So, if it is a lazy weekend with you other half, or the morning after the night before, here are three simple and yet tasty breakfasts to share.
All the ingredients can be purchased easily at any small supermarket, but the better the ingredients the better it will taste.
Healthy & Wise – Avocado on Toast – Bacon is optional
This is a light but tasty breakfast that can be whipped up in 5 minutes (except with the bacon which will take 10 minutes or so). Zesty fresh Avocado with salty tangy bacon, great way to get up & go.
You will need
1 Ripe Avocado
Lemon Juice (fresh or from a bottle)
Pinch of Paprika
Salt & Pepper
Good Brown or Wholemeal Bread
Optional Extras –
Let’s get going – if you have bacon, put it under the grill or in a very lightly oiled pan or griddle. Turn the bacon regularly, you want it crispy but not turned to charcoal!
De-stone your avocado – to do this take a sharp knife and cut lengthwise through the skin around the pip in the centre, twist the two sides apart and then remove the stone. As you are not worried about how the avocado looks, scoop out the innards into a bowl.
Add to the bowl a splash of lemon juice, a pinch of paprika and, if you want, add the Suited Chef flourish; 2 teaspoons of creme fraiche. Add salt and pepper to taste. Mix all together with a fork to give it a rough texture.
Toast the bread, wholemeal is great though pumpernickel is another Suited Chef flourish. Whilst doing this the bacon should be coming along nicely.
Place the cooked bacon onto some paper towels to drain, and then when the toast is done, butter very lightly or, if you are feeling fancy, drizzle a little Extra Virgin Olive Oil over the bread.
Spread the Avocado Mixture over the toast, one Avocado should give you about 2 slices of toast covered generously. Then add the bacon either on the side to nibble at or crunch through.
A little French Delight – Croissant with Ham and Cheese
Speed is of the essence? Need something to go? Want something that tastes and makes your mouth water as the smells waft towards you?
4 large slices of Ham
200g of Cheese – either a Gruyere or Strong Cheddar
Mustard (preferably Dijon)
Turn your oven on low – about 100c or thereabouts it needs to be warm.
Cut your croissants in half, spread a smear of mustard on one side of the croissant, lay a slice of ham on top of the mustard and then slice some of the cheese on top of the ham. If you have a little more time then grate the cheese, it will melt quicker.
Put the top half of the croissant on top of your pile and press gently. Place the croissants on a baking tray into the oven, if you have some I would layer the tray with greaseproof paper, it will help with the cleaning up afterwards.
You can substitute ham for tomatoes or indeed mushrooms, both need to be thinly sliced.
Whilst the croissants warm up and the cheese melts, make your coffee and get the plates out. Check to see if your little breakfast treats are doing well. Take them out after about 3-5 mins, just as the cheese is starting to melt.
They will be warm to the touch and easy to eat, so serve immediately and enjoy.
A Little Spanish Flavour to the Morning – Eggs with Chorizo, Peppers and Manchego
Do you have some time this morning? Great, you can whip up this Spanish influenced treat to dazzle the taste buds.
1 Chorizo Sausage Ring or
1 Red Pepper
100g of Manchego Cheese
Splash of Milk
Salt & Pepper
This recipe takes a little prep work and then a speedy coming together at the end.
Firstly, you will need to slice your red pepper, chop off the stalk and de-seed it, also remove any of the white pith that may be attached to the lovely red flesh. You then need to slice thin strips of the pepper about the length and width of your little finger.
Take a medium sized non-stick frying pan, heat it up to a medium temperature and place a little oil in the pan, then start to saute the peppers, you will want them to go soft.
Next, grate your Manchego cheese and put it to one side. Then take about half of the chorizo ring and peel the paper off it, which is a fiddly job but worth it. Then thinly slice it about the size of a small coin in width.
Your peppers should be starting to soften now, take them out of the pan and rest them on a paper towel. Turn the heat up on the pan and add the chorizo. You will not need any oil and the chorizo will soon make it’s own. Turn them regularly.
Whilst you are cooking the chorizo, break your eggs into a bowl and add a splash of milk and add salt and pepper to taste. Whisk this mixture till it is fluffy and has a nice froth on the top.
The chorizo should be coming along nicely and starting to colour, turn the heat down a fraction, and, if there is too much oil, scoop some out (The Suited Chef likes to keep this tasty oil to flavour other dishes).
Now place the peppers in with the chorizo and warm through, then turn up the heat and pour the egg mixture on top of the peppers and chorizo.
Now you have 2 options – you can either let it settle and make a frittata or you can keep stirring and make a scrambled egg.
For the scrambled egg, keep stirring the mixture gently, as it starts to firm up add about half the Cheese and then keep stirring till you are happy with the texture. I like mine slightly runny, but Mrs Chef likes hers well done.
For the Frittata, immediately add about half the grated cheese and give it a quick stir then let the mixture settle and cook. I would lift the edges whilst it settles. When it starts to harden you can do three things – if you are brave, you can flip it. If you have a grill you can place it under the grill with the remainder of the cheese or you can pop it in the oven (on a low heat). If you are placing your frying pan in the oven or under the grill, make sure the handle can take the heat and remember it will be hot when you take it out!
About half the mixture each will be a hearty breakfast, serve with either a toasted english muffin or brioche roll depending on your taste. Top with the remainder of the cheese and Suited Chef flourish of a sprinkle of paprika.
We hope you enjoyed these recipes and breakfasts, though no breakfast is complete without a great cup of coffee and a glass of fresh juice.