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2/24/2006  

Sunday Brunch // 19 February / Yummy Eggs & Banana Bread

Our little dinner crew mixed it up and had brunch last Sunday. We had such a great time that we didn't even leave till almost 2pm - and then we decided to go watch the sunset over drinks and apps, so out went plans for my Sunday dinner.
Serena cooked up a storm and I'm thrilled to pass it on to you. I'm always happy to find a new egg dish...LOVED the artichoke & spinach dish, and the mini frittatas are genius. I can't wait to make them myself with another combo - maybe Gruyere & spinach?
But let me tell you, the Chocolate Banana Bread with walnuts is to die for.
This was the yummiest meal - I didn't feel over-fed afterwards which can happen with a late brunch. Best of all, it was a beautiful day in LA and the company was fabulous!!

Banana Bread with Chocolate Chips and Walnuts from Epicurious
makes one 9-inch loaf

1 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/4 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate chips
3/4 cup walnuts, toasted, chopped
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 cup sugar
2 large eggs
1 cup mashed ripe bananas
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour 9x5x2 1/2-inch metal loaf pan. Whisk first 4 ingredients in medium bowl to blend. Combine chocolate chips and walnuts in small bowl; add 1 tablespoon flour mixture and toss to coat.

Beat butter in large bowl until fluffy. Gradually add sugar, beating until well blended. Beat in eggs 1 at a time. Beat in mashed bananas, lemon juice and vanilla extract. Beat in flour mixture. Spoon 1/3 of batter into prepared pan. Sprinkle with half of nut mixture. Spoon 1/3 of batter over. Sprinkle with remaining nut mixture. Cover with remaining batter. Run knife through batter in zigzag pattern.

Bake bread until tester inserted into center comes out clean, about 1 hour 5 minutes. Turn out onto rack and cool.

Oven Baked Eggs with Artichoke & Spinach (family recipe)
feeds 6 nicely

2 6oz jars of marinated artichoke hearts
½ pound of sliced mushrooms
10 oz. frozen spinach (thawed)
5 eggs
1.5 cups of sharp cheddar cheese
1 cop of red onions
3 tablespoons of olive oil

Directions:
Preheat oven @ 350
Prepare large baking dish (a lasagna dish would work great) with cooking spray
Thaw spinach
Drain Artichokes and chop in small pieces
Sauté onions and mushrooms
Beat eggs
Combine all ingredients (including cheese too) and pour into baking dish
Add salt and pepper for taste
Bake @ 350 for 50 minutes

Ham and Cheese Mini Frittatas from Rachel Ray

Note: you must use 2 mini-muffin tins with 2-inch cups to make these easy party bites. These tins can be found on the baking aisle in larger markets or at many discount stores. Most hold 12 mini-muffins per tin, some hold 24. This recipe will make 24 pieces.

1/4 pound deli sliced Swiss cheese, finely chopped
6 slices Canadian bacon, finely chopped
3 tablespoons snipped or chopped chives
A few grinds black pepper
8 eggs, or 1 pint egg beaters
2 tablespoons melted butter

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Mix together the chopped cheese, Canadian bacon, and chives and season with a few grinds of pepper. In a bowl, beat the eggs. Brush the muffin tins with melted butter. Using a teaspoon, fill the 24 mini-muffin cups halfway with the cheese mixture. Using a ladle, fill the cups to just below the edge with the beaten eggs. Bake until golden, about 12 minutes. Remove and let cool to handle, then arrange the egg bites on a plate and serve.

Till next week's dinner....