EAR-ROUND APPRECIATION is something my mom deserves simply because she is an amazing person. She amazes me with her resilience, kindness, optimism and her incredible ability to nag non-stop. I'm also amazed by how silly she can be—she sends text messages to my dad asking, "Do you want a snake?" because she thinks that's how you spell 'snack'. Yep, she can diffuse any situation with her silliness.
She also bears an uncanny similarity to Mother Theresa in every almost every way: she is way too nice and has superhuman powers when it comes to multi-tasking (working 9 hour days, cooking, cleaning, laundry, taking her kids to doctor appointments/school/visit friends, taking my grandparents places, grocery shopping)... umm, is she a saint?
My sister and I had the idea of making casual breakfast foods in dressed-up ways. I couldn't think of anything too visually spectacular, but with the idea of daisy eggs in toast, I'd say breakfast foods vaulted from forlorn to pretty darn fantastic in my book.
On the menu for Momma, there was...
- Using a flower-shaped cookie cutter, cut out the center of a slice of bread.
- Toast the bread, then fit cookie cutter coated with cooking spray in the center of the bread.
- Crack an egg into cutter. Cover your pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, then let cool and remove cookie cutter. (You can use a toothpick to loosen the egg if you have problems with sticking.)
ROASTED FENNEL AND CITRUS SALAD (my sister's recipe)
- 2 bulbs of fennel, cut into 1/2 inch strips and roasted
- 2 oranges, cut into wedges without pith
- 1/2 red onion, diced
- 4 cups mix of spring greens and spinach
- 6 leaves mint
- 1/2 cup walnuts, *optional
- 1/4 cup juice from orange
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/8 cup balsamic vinegar
- Trim the fennel bulb. Cut into slices about 1/2 inch thick.
- Roast fennel at 350° for 20-30 min. until translucent and caramelized.
- Remove the skin of the oranges with a sharp knife, taking care to remove all the white pith from the fruit. Cut out the orange sections and squeeze the orange juice for the vinaigrette.
- Slice the onion and mint into ribbons, and scatter walnuts on top of combined ingredients.
- Whisk olive oil and vinegar into orange juice.
- Drizzle vinaigrette on salad and serve.
- 8 lemons
- 3 large eggs
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- Cut 1/5 of the tip of a lemon off and make sure it sits level. Do the same with the top of each lemon, and save the tops for caps.
- Scoop out the pulp of the lemon with a melon baller or spoon, and squeeze the juice for later. Repeat with all lemons. Put shells on a sheet lined with parchment paper and place on baking sheet.
- Separate egg yolks and whites. Combine egg yolks, sugar, flour and 1/4 cup lemon juice in a heat-proof bowl. Whisk the mixture on a medium speed for about 3 minutes until it becomes a light yellow. Using a double boiler, beat for 5-7 minutes until thick. Take the bowl off the double boiler and beat on a medium speed until cool (8-10 minutes).
- Combine egg whites and 1/4 cup sugar in a new bowl. Using a double boiler, stir until the sugar is dissolved. Remove the bowl and beat on low speed until very frothy. Gradually use a faster speed until the meringue holds soft peaks. Do this for about 2-3 minutes and do not overbeat.
- Whisk 1/3 of the meringue from Step 4 into the mixture from Step 3. Pour this mixture into the lemon shells. Heat oven to 350°, and put sheet into oven. Remove from the oven after 10-15 minutes when meringue has puffed up and is slightly golden. Put caps on each lemon and serve immediately!
Happy Mother's Day!
XO // MARGARET