Sunday, April 7, 2013

Eggs in a Hash Brown Nest

There are few things in this world that I love more than breakfast. Especially breakfasts of the egg and potato variety. But when that morning comes and you have to get ready for work, who has time to make a full breakfast? Unless you're an early bird (and I am not) you probably either skip breakfast or throw some milk into a bowl with some instant oatmeal and stick it in the microwave when you get to work, which is what I've been doing for the last couple of months. Oatmeal is great breakfast, don't get me wrong, but sometimes I need a little variety in my life, and the sunshine-y golden yolks of eggs make me very happy when they're smiling back at me. I'm weird, I know. But hey, it's the simple things in life, right?

I got the idea for these from an episode of The Pioneer Woman on Food Network I saw around Easter time. She made these little Eggs in Hash Brown Nests to go with a ham she was making for Easter breakfast. I liked the idea but hers were very simple, so I took the concept and made it a little more to my liking. 

I made mine with a little sour cream, a little shredded cheese, a little sauteed spinach, a little onion and a lot of garlic powder. I also added a sprinkle of bacon salt because my mom got it for me as a joke, but I put it in/on anything, and since I didn't want to add actual bacon, this was a perfect solution, but completely optional. That's the great thing about this recipe. You can add or take out things as you would like. Not a fan of spinach? Leave it out. Have some leftover ham? Throw it in there! Don't have shredded cheese on hand? Omit it. You get the gist.

The recipe was overall quite inexpensive, pretty healthy (my version had about 118 calories per cup), and protein packed. I'm still settling into my place, so my kitchen isn't as well-stocked as it would be normally, but I only had to go out and by the hash-browns, another carton of eggs, and a very small container of fat-free sour cream. And now I have everything I need to make another batch for next week!

...and now I have breakfast for all next week! I'm a two egg kind of gal, so if you only eat one egg at a time normally, you'll have some to share! I'm going to grab them on my way out the door and heat them up in the microwave when I get to work. What a great way to start your day! 

Eggs in Hash Brown Nests
Adapted from The Pioneer Woman
Makes 10 muffins

Olive oil
14 oz (1/2 package) of Alexia Hashed Browns
1/2 medium onion, finely chopped
3 oz (1/2 package) of raw baby spinach
1/4 cup fat free sour cream
1/4 cup shredded cheese (I used a Mexican blend)
Garlic powder
Bacon salt (optional)
Non-stick cooking spray

Preheat oven to 425°. Heat a large skillet and drizzle with olive oil. Sauté chopped onion until transparent. Add hash browns. Cook, stirring occasionally, for 6-8 minutes. In a medium skillet, drizzle olive oil and heat. Add spinach and cook until wilted (3-5 minutes). In a large mixing bowl, combine cook hash browns and spinach. Add and combine sour cream, shredded cheese, and garlic powder, bacon salt, salt and pepper to taste. Liberally spray a muffin pan with non-stick cooking spray. Scoop 3-4 tablespoons of the potato mixture into each muffin cup. Gently press the potato mixture around to the edges of the cup, forming a cup. Bake the potato cups for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown and set. Once cooked, crack an egg into each cup, season with salt and pepper, and put back in the oven for another 12-15 minutes, depending on how firm you prefer your yolks (15 minutes made my yolks soft but not runny). When eggs are cooked, remove from oven and allow to cool 5-7 minutes and remove from muffin tin.

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