CYO Cooking and Nutrition April 2012
Yes. Chef Stella is encouraging you to eat pizza for breakfast. This food can be turned into a dynamic breakfast that is quick to prepare and fun to eat on busy mornings. These pizzas are nourishing from the crust up! Whole-grain English muffins will quickly metabolize into energy, eggs will wake up your brain and keep you alert through morning classes, the fats in the cheese will keep you feeling full til lunch time, and the raw veggies sprinkled on top contain everything from enzymes to phytonutrients guaranteed to make every cell in your body ready to begin a successful new day. Celebrate spring with a new way to think about an old favorite.
· 4 tablespoons low-sodium tomato sauce
· 2 English muffins, halved and toasted
· 4 eggs
· 2 Tablespoons butter
· ½ teaspoon dried sage
· 1 teaspoon red pepper flakes
· ½ teaspoon black pepper
· ½ cup mozzarella cheese
· 4 Tablespoons parmesan cheese
· 8 mushrooms, rough chopped
· 4- 6 cherry tomatoes, halved and resting in olive oil
· 1 Tablespoon minced parsley
· ½ - 1 Tablespoon minced shallots
· ½ Tablespoon minced chives
1. Heat oven to 375. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper. Split the English muffins in half and arrange them face side up.
2. Heat a stove eye to medium. Add half of the butter to a pan to sauté the mushrooms. Begin cooking the mushrooms when the butter has melted. Keep the heat low so the mushroom liquids and butter do not evaporate. Remove the mushrooms with a fork.
3. Reduce the stove eye to low. Prepare your scrambled eggs by combining the egg, sage, red pepper flakes, and black pepper in a small bowl. Whisk until frothy. Add the rest of the butter to the pan with the mushroom juices. Once it has melted, slowly pour the eggs into the pan. Keep stirring them until their texture has a creamy, springy quality.
4. The assembly of these pizzas is open to creativity. The basic way is to begin by slathering each muffin half with a layer of tomato sauce. Then pile some eggs on and top with the shredded mozzarella cheese. Pop some halved cherry tomatoes and sautéed mushrooms on top and you are ready to send your pizza to the oven. Set the baking sheet in the center of the oven and bake for ten minutes.
5. While the cheese is still hot, sprinkle the minced parsley, shallots, and chives on top of the melted cheese. Give everything a light dusting of parmesan and voila! A pizza prize for your health and pleasure.
This recipe is intended to be the easiest way to make sure you and your family are eating a wholesome, balanced meal in the mornings. It revolves around the carbohydrates in the muffins and the protein and fats in the eggs and cheese. Breakfast can be seen as two words: “break” and “fast”. The body goes into a fast during the night and rebuilds its strength from the day before. It is your responsibility to wake up and break the fast by feeding your body lots of nutrients to prepare it for the demands of your busy day! That being said, our kitchen cupboards often look different from a recipe sheet. Here are some substitutions and suggestions for taking advantage of this recipe and maintaining the balance between the carbohydrate, protein, and fat nutrients:
· Use toast, pita bread, or tortillas instead of English muffins. Always try to find whole-grain versions for maximum nutrition.
· No tomato sauce? Pesto would be delicious. Make it even simpler: smash a clove of garlic, rub it on the bread, drizzle some olive oil on top and proceed as normal.
· Don’t season the eggs if you don’t have time or particular herbs. Please play with creating your own seasoning from your supplies!
· Use any flavor of cheese you have in the house. You could even use a very thin layer of sour cream and reduce your cooking time to only 3 – 4 minutes.
· Top with any veggies! The more colors and varieties of vegetables, the better.
Nutrition Superstar: Tomatoes
Lycopene is a carotene that gives tomatoes their red color. Remember that eating a rainbow of fruits and vegetables is the easiest way to ensure you are receiving a wide array of vitamins, minerals, and phytonutrients. Carotenes color food and they are also antioxidant byproducts of photosynthesis which produces the lovely cancer-fighting compounds we have been learning about: the phytonutrients. This red carotene has been proven to be extremely protective against degenerations and breast, colon, lung, and skin cancers. Eating a lycopene source with oil (such as the olive oil marinade we use in this recipe) improves the cell’s ability to store lycopene.
Farmer’s Markets: They’re Back! Happy Spring!
Valencia Farmers Market: 1299 Valencia Street, San Francisco. Mon- Fri 8 am - 7:30 pm. Sat-Sun 9 am - 6:30 pm.
Coastside Farmer’s Market: Rockaway Beach, Pacifica. Wednesdays, 2:30 to 6:30 pm.