Cooking Aboard …Eggstra Delicious Breakfast

When preparing for John’s fishing trips that are just the guys, “Cooking Aboard” actually means “Prepping At Home.” 

This weekend they are going for three full days which means I need to pack something for their breakfasts. 

One of my Go-To breakfast/ brunch dishes is this hearty Egg Casserole.  I often make it for my P.E.O. women’s group or when entertaining for brunch. 

This dish can be made, baked and frozen so it’s an entire Do-Ahead.  Aboard Clicker, all the guys have to do is defrost and microwave it. 

Ingredients for the hearty Egg casserole

Ingredients for the hearty Egg casserole

Hearty Egg Casserole

8-10 stalks Asparagus, blanched

1 lb. Chorizo (or Italian Sausage) cooked crispy

4 cups French Bread, in small cubes

2 cups Gruyère, shredded

¼ cup Onion, minced

1 4 oz. can chopped Mild Green Chiles, drained

¼ cup Chives, chopped

5 T. Fresh Thyme, chopped

10 Eggs

1 ½ cups Whole Milk

Blanch the asparagus and cool in an ice bath.  Drain, chop in ¼ inch pieces and set aside.

Lots of fresh thyme and chives brighten up this dish

Lots of fresh thyme and chives brighten up this dish

Cook chorizo or Italian sausage until crispy.  Drain and set aside.

Grease a 9 x 13 baking dish.  Spread in two cups of the bread cubes.  Top with cheese, onion, chiles, chives, thyme, half of the asparagus, and half of the chorizo.

In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs and milk.  Pour evenly over the casserole and press down with a wooden spoon.

Top with the remaining asparagus and chorizo and press down again.

Cover and refrigerate until ready to bake.

Bake uncovered in a 325 degree oven for 45 minutes.  Let stand 10-15 minutes before serving.  Once baked, it can be frozen.

Let it cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting. Let it cool completely before freezing.

Let it cool for at least 10 minutes before cutting. Let it cool completely before freezing.

Tip:  Egg dishes like this are so versatile – feel free to egg-speriment…If you want to make it vegetarian, replace the sausage with sautéed mushrooms.  I make it mild for my women’s group, but spice it up by replacing the green chiles with fresh jalapeno and the Gruyère with Pepper Jack. 

"Julia's Tacos" for National Taco Day, October 4

October 4th is National Taco Day which coincides with the opening day of lobster season, which October 1st. 

John and the guys will be lobstering this weekend near Catalina - a perfect time to prepare “Julia’s Tacos,” one of everyone’s favorite dinners aboard. 

If you’ve read Salad Joy, you know that I’m all about the Do-Ahead.  For all-guy lobster trips, dinner absolutely must be a do-ahead, so all they have to do is assemble.  

Skirt steak is the star of this meal. Start with the best from   Gelson's .

Skirt steak is the star of this meal. Start with the best from Gelson's.

The day before they leave I season two to three pounds of skirt steak with salt, pepper and garlic powder and grill it medium rare.

Grill on high heat to get a good char. Let it rest before cubing to lock in the juices and flavor.  

Grill on high heat to get a good char on the meat.

Grill on high heat to get a good char on the meat.

To lock in flavor, let the grilled meat rest several minutes before cubing it 

To lock in flavor, let the grilled meat rest several minutes before cubing it 

Cut the grilled skirt steak into small cubes and double bag it in re-sealable plastic bags for an easy Do-Ahead.

Cut the grilled skirt steak into small cubes and double bag it in re-sealable plastic bags for an easy Do-Ahead.

I also finely chop up a couple of onions and put them in re-sealable plastic bags.  I like using the soft corn tortillas instead of the pre-made shells. 

The rest of the fixins are easy to pack up for the boat. These simple ingredients are easy to assemble for a delicious Do-Ahead dinner.

The rest of the fixins are easy to pack up for the boat. These simple ingredients are easy to assemble for a delicious Do-Ahead dinner.

When it’s time for dinner between pulling pots, John will microwave the tortillas wrapped in damp paper towels, re-heat the skirt steak and serve with the chopped onions, grated cheddar, salsa and some cilantro. 

Everyone makes their own tacos.  As there is usually left over steak and tortillas, they scramble the steak in with their eggs for killer breakfast burritos.  When they return, I hope I will have a reason to create a recipe for lobster tacos!

Blue Fin Joy -- Part Two

There is something deeply satisfying about preparing and eating something just pulled out of the ocean…by my husband!  

We enjoyed the fresh blue fin and yellowtail for dinner with family and friends three nights in a row!  Both fish made the best sashimi. 

sashimi.jpg

For the yellowtail we drizzled a little soy sauce and sprinkled on some chopped chives.  John chopped up some of the tuna for spicy tuna rolls.  Finely mince some tuna, add some hot chili oil and a little mayonnaise and mix well. 

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Add what you like on the roll – avocado, cucumber, blanched asparagus, chives or green onions. 

spicy tuna 2.jpg

John and I really like making sushi, as it’s one of the few times we are working together in the kitchen.  We all end up just standing around the island eating it as soon as we make it!   

Blue Fin Joy – Part One

John had in his words an “epic” fishing day recently, easily landing this 50 pound Blue Fin Tuna.

john marshall blue fin.jpg

This is fish is sushi-grade – rich and buttery.  John calls it the “filet mignon of tuna.”  He also caught a couple of yellowtail. 

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John and his brother Bill devoured the tuna tartare I put together as a snack. 

The tartare is super easy.  Chop some of the tuna and an avocado in very small cubes. 

Add finely chopped green onions, a few squeezes of fresh lime juice, a little soy sauce, sesame oil and a couple of dashes of Sriracha. 

Sprinkle on some toasted sesame seeds. 

tuna tartare.jpg

The beauty of this dish is that it can be tailored to your tastes and what you have on hand.  No Srircha?  Substitute hot chili oil and don’t add sesame oil. 

Like it spicier?  Mince in a little fresh jalapeno. 

I like to serve it with plain water crackers to allow the flavor of the tuna to be the star.