Friday, July 13, 2012

Ron’s Gourmet Brunch Eggs

It’s always a treat when Ron serves brunch! When we enjoyed house guests this week, he made a late and lazy breakfast while I set the table. I’m fortunate to have many different table themes, limited only by my budget and storage space. A secret? Most of my special finds came from second-hand stores and garage sales, but I treasure each and every one. If youre thinking of expanding your tableware, your best buy is a complete set of plain white china. White plates, platters and bowls can easily be dressed up or down, providing greater versatility than most place settings. A heavily patterned set provides the least versatility, while a set of something bright and gay that you can mix and match with accessory pieces and brightly colored linens will pay for itself in good times and plenty of use. 
My biggest buying error? A large set of cobalt glass dishes and accessories. Food doesn’t look appetizing on deep blue plates, and every child knows that milk appears revolting in dark blue glasses. If you’re interested in food photography, food doesn’t look good against turquoise plates either; unfortunately, I also have a set of those. I do use my turquoise plates, but don’t consider them a particularly smart buy. 
Whatever you buy, ensure it works well with what you already have in your china and linen collection, making the best use of your money. If you love color as much as I do, brunch certainly is the time to splash it out! Even when we eat alone, Ron and I always try to set a pretty table, and always - without fail - light at least one candle by which to enjoy and give quiet thanks for our meal. 
Ron’s Gourmet Brunch Eggs:
1 tbsp. canola oil
2 large mushrooms, coarsely chopped
½ large orange or yellow bell pepper, in 1-in. chunks
½ large red bell pepper, in 1-in. chunks
1 medium tomato, sliced into ¾-in. chunks (12 pieces)
8 large eggs, well beaten with salt and pepper to taste plus 3 tbsp. cold water
¼ c. coarsely chopped green onions (“spring” onions)
1 c. aged cheddar cheese, in ¼-to-½ in. cubes
Add oil to large skillet on medium-high heat. Fry mushrooms and bell peppers 1 min. Reduce heat to medium. Immediately add tomatoes and eggs, sprinkling with green onions and lifting several times with broad spatula to allow liquid to run underneath and top to cook. Add chunks of cheese shortly after eggs begin to cook. Eggs will take approximately 2 min. to cook. Ron says that under no circumstances should you overcook them. The eggs should be moist, but firm. Despite their name, these eggs are lifted, rather than scrambled. Serves 4.
Note: Ron serves this dish with freshly cooked sausages (turned frequently and cooked at medium temperature until golden brown, about 5 min.). He uses a spatter guard over the sausages, to minimize the mess of any sizzling, popping fat.

Ron assembles his ingredients before he starts to cook,
because this dish takes less than 5 min., in total

While Ron cooks, my focus is on table-scaping

Just for fun, I added a couple of roosters to the table from
my collection of table-scaping treasures!

Meanwhile, at home on the range, Ron fries the sausages

This spatter-guard helps reduce the mess. Because it's silicone,
it withstands high heat and pops right into the dishwasher

Ron's Gourmet Scrambled Eggs and sausages provide a 
stick-to-the-ribs brunch for departing house guests 

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