The Best Breakfast
The best breakfast is real food. Not coffee. Not something from a box or bought from a (donut) shop. It's food that you eat at a table. Not in your car or walking to the train. It's loaded with protein to keep you satiated, stabilize your blood sugar, boot up your metabolism and communicate with your brain that you are well-fed, not starving by skipping this meal. Which also means it's not loaded with flour, sugar or dairy.
As a health coach, it frustrates me when I hear that people skip breakfast because their coffee fills them up or they're just not hungry or worse because they have no time. Mornings are busy in every household, so waking up 15 minutes early to make breakfast could make the difference between having a productive, energetic day verses a sluggish, foggy one.
Protein is a macronutrient that is essential for our good health. It fuels our metabolism; stabilizes blood sugar and hormone levels; supports bone, blood and tissue health; and has amino acids that attach to and filter out toxins. These days, eggs are lauded the perfect protein, containing all nine essential amino acids our bodies can't naturally produce.
I found this mushroom tortilla in this month's Food & Wine. The mag's editor-and-chief Dana Cowin made this recipe with chef José Andrés as part of her "don't do what I do" cooking-mistake series. Her book is funny and relatable and totally worth getting. I recently got to see Dana live with the amazing chef Suzanne Goin, most notably from Lucques and A.O.C. in Los Angeles. Mark is a huge fan of Chef Goin's, so I was a little fan-buzzed myself. I've been wanting to share some of Chef Goin's random tips, so here goes...
Dressing ratio is 2:1. 2 parts vinegar, 1 part oil.
Use 1 tablespoon dressing per person per salad.
Cook protein - 2/3 of the way on higher heat. Flip and cook 1/3 on lower heat.
Don’t crowd the pan.
Rice oil is good for sautéing fish and frying.
Tasty short ribs can be made with red wine, port and balsamic.
To cook flat bacon, place slices between two cookie sheets with parchment between layers and then bake in the oven.
Get anchovies in salt.
Goin and Cowin made time to help raise money and awareness for COOKGIRL at an event at Elawa Farm right after the James Beard Award ceremony in Chicago earlier this year. I was lucky enough to go.
But back to breakfast...this tortilla uses eight eggs, so technically it can feed four. Who am I to make modifications to a Food & Wine Kitchen Perfected recipe? But I couldn't help myself, and reduced the 6 tablespoons of olive oil down to 4 tablespoons of avocado oil, which gives everyone one tablespoon of this healthy fat that feeds and sustains the brain and the belly. If you make this during the week, you can pre-chop the night before. Or even make the whole thing the night before and just reheat for a quick sit down breakfast. While the veggies are sautéing and the eggs are setting, make the most of this time and make lunch for the kids or yourself. My boys loved this tortilla and even requested that I add some shredded hash browns to the eggs next time - didn't even miss the cheese!
4 T avocado oil
1/2 small red or white onion, thinly sliced or chopped
3/4 pound Baby Bella mushrooms, chopped small
1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley, plus more for garnish
8 large eggs
In a 10-inch nonstick skillet, heat the oil over medium heat.
Add the onion and a generous pinch of salt and pepper. Cook over moderate heat, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 5 minutes.
Add the mushrooms and season with salt and pepper. Cook over moderately high heat, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are tender and golden, about 7 minutes.
Stir in the 1/4 cup of parsley.
In a large bowl, beat the eggs with a generous pinch of salt and pepper.
Pour the eggs into the skillet and cook over moderate heat, gently stirring and lifting the tortilla, until the edge is set and the center is still loose, about 7 minutes.
Put a large, flat plate on top of the skillet and carefully flip the tortilla onto the plate. Loved this tip!! Worked like a charm.
Slide the tortilla back into the skillet and cook until the center cooked through, 1 to 2 minutes longer. I like to press the tortilla gently to make sure it's completely cooked. Plus I like my eggs a little brown.
Slide onto a serving plate, brush with olive oil and garnish with parsley if you want to get Food & Wine about it.
HEARTFUL RECIPE - One of our real food recipes that focuses on veggies, protein, healthy fats and/or healthy carbs and doesn't include gluten, dairy, soy, refined sugar, corn or peanuts.