Thursday, August 16, 2012

Dill Eggs in Puff Pastry

When we lived in Dallas, we used to frequent a breakfast place called Le Peep (it may still be there) and we had a favorite dish called Country Cool. It was scrambled eggs, cream cheese, ham and dill. We have tried to recreate that and make it a little fancier by wrapping it in puff pastry. The eggs are great by themselves if you don’t have or don't want the pastry.

Dill Eggs

5 eggs lightly whipped, reserving 1 Tbsp. for egg wash.
1/2 tsp. dill
4 oz cream cheese
1 tsp. unsalted butter
1/4 c. finely diced shallots
1/2 c. diced ham
1 puff pastry sheet (found in frozen food section)

Egg wash
1 Tbsp. egg
1 Tbsp. Water
You can sprinkle on toasted sesame seeds, if you want.

Night Before: (This is optional, but the scrambled eggs are easier to work on the pastry sheet later if they have been chilled.) Lightly whip dill into eggs. Cut cream cheese into medium chunks. In large saucepan, saute shallots in butter. Stir in ham. Add dill eggs and stir until softly scrambled. Remove from heat and immediately stir in cream cheese until almost melted and blended. Set aside, or cover and refrigerate overnight.
 Final Preparation: Roll out pastry sheet on wax paper or cutting board to 14 inches by 18 inches. Spoon egg mixture onto center of pastry sheet leaving 2 inches of pastry bare at top and bottom and 4 inches bare along both sides.

Fold the 2-inch top and bottom over the filling. Then go down both the 4 inch sides cutting the bare pastry at 1/2 inch intervals from the edge up to the filling. This creates a series of 1/2-inch strips down both sides.

Beginning at one end fold one strip over filling from left, then one from right, alternating sides until all pastry covers the filling.  

Brush with egg wash. Place on cookie sheet lined with parchment paper or silicone mat. Bake 20 to 30 minutes at 400~ until golden brown.

Allow cooling 4 minutes before slicing.
Serves 4-6

We serve with fruit and homemade hash browns.  Sorry, forgot to take a picture of the plate when we were serving. Somehow when I am in the middle of breakfast, I get a little distracted.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

Flora & Fauna 2012

I thought you might enjoy some of the Nature display we get to enjoy on an ongoing basis!  These are photos you have missed if you are not following us on Facebook. To follow us on Facebook, just click this link to our Facebook page and "like" us. That way you can see our photo updates week to week.

During Spring Cleaning we uncovered lots of fine specimens.  We had never seen this Spotted Salamander before, and I gather from research, it is somewhat elusive.  Lucky us!

        The Phoebes made their annual appearance in our makeshift nesting boxes. Here is a photo of the babies right before they fledged.

Walking Sticks are very common on our porch but we have never seen one like this.  The red and turquoise stripes made this one a real stand out from the regular solid green or brown variety.  He was much larger as well.

This year our wrens gave us a treat by laying their eggs in a nest snuggled down in a potted plant on the front porch by the porch swing. They are used to us and put on quite a show.  It was fun getting to watch the eggs appearing (one a day for five days) and then watching them hatch.   The chicks were hard to photograph as they would dart back in the recesses of the nest when we grew too close.

We have a Moon Flower plant we started from seeds we brought with us from Dallas.  It is finally getting mature enough to put on more than one blossom per night.  This picture was taken on the night we had six flowers open all at once...beautiful and fragrant!

My favorite photos of the year have to be these three of a cicada emerging from its shell.  We just happen to be out picking figs and this was happening right in front of us.  It didn't take much time and Mike wished afterwards that we had shot video instead.

I know some of you are never going to get on Facebook so maybe we can have an annual show-and-tell here for you.  Enjoy!

The rest of you  like  us on FB!