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Family, Food & Recipes

Sausage, Egg & Cheese Breakfast Sandwiches

December 5, 2017

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This post is sponsored by Tyson as part of the #JimmyDeanSausage campaign. All opinions are my own and I so appreciate you supporting the brands that make Espresso and Cream possible.Ā 

Breakfast has always been my favorite meal of the day as an adult. Perhaps because it’s accompanied by lots of coffee with half and half, or because these is a level of comfort and ease around our breakfast table that doesn’t exist other times of the day. I wish I could say I loved dinnertime as much as breakfast, but my early-rising kids are in a much better mood first thing in the morning than when 5 pm rolls around, and most dinners are spent bouncing a fussy baby and bribing a toddler to eat a bite of everything on her plate. A struggle that doesn’t usually exist at breakfast.

Joe works out at the gym and eats his breakfast on the road most weekday mornings, but Thursday mornings when Joe is home a little longer than usual, I make a little extra effort to make breakfast special. We’re not talking elaborate and time-consuming – just something savory and hot like eggs with toast and bacon or sausage (Joe and Ainsley’s favorite).

Like I mentioned above, Joe and Ainsley both love sausage so when an opportunity to work with Jimmy Dean Fully-Cooked Sausage came across my desk, I really had no choice but to accept! We’ve purchased Jimmy Dean Fully-Cooked Sausage from the refrigerated section many times on our weekly grocery trips to Walmart; I love that the patties only require quick heating through and are sealed in smaller sub-pouches in the box. For a family like ours, who only has hot breakfast together a few times per week, this cuts down on food waste – something I can fully get behind.

This week’s breakfast went above and beyond our usual scrambled eggs, sausage and toast, because who doesn’t love a good restaurant-style breakfast sandwich? Toasted Ciabatta buns filled with sunny-side-up eggs, sharp white cheddar cheese, sausage, and fresh mixed greens. Because I had to get some greens in there. It’s a compulsion. I just can’t be helped. In full disclosure: Ainsley didn’t eat the greens because, “I don’t like that salad!” But we’re working on it. šŸ˜‰

Sausage, Egg & Cheese Breakfast Sandwiches
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 4 Ciabatta rolls, halved lengthwise
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2 oz. sharp white cheddar cheese, shaved
  • 4 Jimmy Dean Fully-Cooked Sausage Patties
  • 1 cup mixed greens
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 375Ā°F. Line a large baking sheet with aluminum foil. Arrange rolls, cut side up, on baking sheet. Drizzle with the olive oil and sprinkle with salt and ground black pepper. Set aside.
  2. In a large skillet over medium high heat, melt butter. Crack eggs into the skillet one at a time. Sprinkle with the salt and black pepper. Cook about 3 minutes, until whites are set and yolks are still runny. Place one egg on bottom half of each of the four rolls. Top each with some of the cheese. Prepare sausage patties according to package directions. Place one sausage patty on top of egg and cheese. Bake 5 minutes to toast rolls slightly and melt cheese.
  3. Remove from oven and top with some of the mixed greens. Top with roll top and serve immediately.

Ā 

Family, Food & Recipes

Sweet and Spicy Bacon-Wrapped Dates

November 28, 2017

This post is sponsored by Tyson as part of the #TysonMadeWithLove campaign. As always, all opinions are my own. Thanks for supporting the brands that make Espresso and Cream possible!Ā 

We’re just starting to get into the swing of holiday parties and events over at the Hofmeyer house. The introvert in me has mixed feelings about lots of holiday engagements, something that is entirely lost on my extroverted husband. Anyway….

With two busy kiddos, general schedule craziness and holiday commitments on top of it all I’m always happy to have a handful of easy, go-to recipes I can whip together without a lot of extra stress or effort. Extra bonus points if the ingredients for those recipes can be kept in the fridge throughout the holiday season so I don’t have to run to the grocery store when I need to bring a side dish or appetizer.

These Sweet and Spicy Bacon Wrapped Dates are downright addictive. The perfect blend of sweetness from the dates and brown sugar, savory from the Natural Hickory Smoked Wright Brand Bacon and goat cheese and spicy from the hit of cayenne and black pepper. If you live in the Midwest where people’s spice tolerance is pretty low or you’re serving them to kids, I would suggest dropping the cayenne all together.

As you already know, we’re pretty loyal Walmart grocery shoppers in this house. I’ve just been waiting for that email letting me know Walmart Grocery Pick-Up is available at my store. Until then, we are still doing our grocery shopping the “old fashioned” way. With a baby in a carrier and a toddler asking for all the candy as we speed through the aisles hoping to avoid anyone melting down. (Click here to find out if Walmart Grocery Pick Up is available in your area.)

If you’re looking for a mouthwatering appetizer to take to your holiday parties, look no further than the recipe below!

Sweet and Spicy Bacon-Wrapped Dates
Author: 
Serves: 16
 
Ingredients
  • 16 pitted dates
  • 2 oz. goat cheese
  • 8 slices Wright Brand Bacon - Natural Hickory Smoked, cut in half widthwise
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • Cayenne pepper and cracked black pepper
Instructions
  1. Heat oven to 375Ā°F.
  2. Cut a slit into the tops of each date. Stuff each date with some of the goat cheese. Wrap one of the pieces of bacon around each date and secure with a toothpick. Roll bacon wrapped dates in brown sugar. Sprinkle with cayenne pepper and cracked black pepper to taste.
  3. Bake 15 minutes, turn over to one side, bake 15 minutes more. Turn once more and bake 15 minutes more. Remove from oven cool at least 10 minutes before serving.

Ā 

Family, Food & Recipes

Holiday Snack Mix & Travel with Kids

November 15, 2017

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img_6588This post is sponsored by SC Johnson. All opinions are my own. Thank you for supporting the brands that make the content on Espresso and Cream possible. #ZiplockHolidayUAI

Back before I had kids, my visions of weekend baking projects were pretty idyllic and, I now realize, unrealistic. I imagined my child happily cutting out cookie dough and decorating cookies, mess-free. Of course now that I have two kids of my own I know better than to tackle elaborate or time-intensive baking projects. Because Ainsley is bound to lose patience and I’m bound to be picking up a giant mess long after the project has lost it’s novelty. So these days, we keep our holiday baking projects on the simple side and everyone in the family is a lot happier because of it.

We have a few holiday road trips coming up in the next few weeks, including some air travel to visit family in Florida, so I’ve been planning and strategizing on how I’m going to keep not one but TWO kids happy in the car and in the air. My solution: busy bags filled with all sorts of goodies, activities and fun new and inexpensive toys. Because we all know that an entertained child is a happy child.

I headed to our local Walmart last week before music class to pick up a bunch of goodies for our trip, along with the supplies to make this Holiday Snack Mix recipe. Ainsley and I made the snack mix together, then portioned it into ZiplocĀ® Brand Storage Snack bags for our travels. We also tied some of the bags with ribbon for gifting to friends and family.

I filled the ZiplocĀ® Brand Storage Gallon bags with coloring books, crayons, stickers, inexpensive figurines (Ainsley’s favorite!), our homemade snack mix, a few new movies, and more. Hopefully these bags provide hours of entertainment and delight while we are doing our holiday travels!

Partnering with SC Johnson on this post was a total no-brainer for me, because as a mom of littles, I use ZiplocĀ® Brand bags for pretty much everything.Ā I always have at least a few ZiplocĀ® Brand Storage Gallon bags in the car as makeshift trash cans on road trips to keep the car clean and organized and to keep figurines and toys grouped together and keep a bunch in my purse for air travel to contain trash and dirty diapers. Mom hacks all around!

Check out the full (easy!) recipe below. And if you’re a frequent Walmart shopper like me, there are also some great coupons available here.

Holiday Snack Mix
Author: 
Prep time: 
Total time: 
 
Ingredients
  • 10 oz. white almond bark
  • ½ cup creamy peanut butter
  • ¼ cup butter
  • ¼ teaspoon peppermint extract
  • 6 cups square-shaped rice cereal
  • 2 cups pretzel sticks
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1 cup red and white candy-coated chocolate pieces
  • Red and green sprinkles
Instructions
  1. In a large microwave-safe bowl, microwave the almond bark, peanut butter and butter on HIGH 30 seconds. Stir; continue to microwave in 15 second intervals, stirring between intervals, until almond bark, peanut butter and butter are melted. Continue to stir until mixture is well combined. Stir in the peppermint extract.
  2. Combine cereal and pretzel sticks in a large mixing bowl. Pour almond bark mixture over cereal and stir until well combined and cereal is evenly coated. Transfer mixture to a ZiplocĀ® Brand Gallon Bag and add in powdered sugar. Seal back and gently shake to coat cereal with the powdered sugar.
  3. Transfer mixture to a flat surface covered with parchment, waxed paper or aluminum foil. Spread in an even layer and add in the candy-coated chocolate pieces. Sprinkle with the red and green sprinkles. Let cool completely.
  4. Divide the mixture into ZiplocĀ® Brand Snack Bags. Tie with ribbon, as desired.

This post is not sponsored or affiliated with Walmart.

Food & Recipes

Greek Chickpea Salad with Pita

October 17, 2017

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We don’t eat many vegetarian meals as a family, but once or twice per week I like to serve up something that is vegetarian both as a cost saving measure and for the health benefits.Ā The only requirements I have for vegetarian meals is that they are filling and contain a good amount of vegetarian protein from beans, lentils, etc.

This recipe is ultra easy to throw together. All you have to do is chop a few tomatoes and cucumbers, then toss everything together and serve! Seriously, I think it took a total of 5 minutes to make this dinner, which is the ultimate win in my book. As an added bonus, this makes great leftovers the next day for lunch.

Greek Chickpea Salad with Pita
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 1 can (15 oz.) chickpeas (garbanzo beans), rinsed and drained
  • 1 cup chopped tomatoes
  • ½ of a medium English cucumber, chopped
  • 6 oz. crumbled feta cheese
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Juice from ½ of a lemon
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ⅛ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • ⅓ cup pitted and halved Kalamata olives
  • 4 whole wheat pita bread rounds (I like Joseph's brand)
  • Mixed greens (optional)
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, stir together the chickpeas, tomatoes, cucumber and feta. Drizzle with the olive oil and lemon juice and sprinkle with the salt, pepper and oregano. Stir gently to evenly combine. Spoon mixture into bowls. Top each bowl with some of the olives. Serve with whole wheat pita bread rounds and mixed greens, if desired.
  2. *This recipe can be made in advance and stored in the refrigerator until ready to serve.

Ā 

Food & Recipes

BLT Chopped Salad + Homemade Bread

October 12, 2017

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Ā 

Hi everyone! So sorry for the delay in posting my next recipe on the Week of Recipes. I got a little sidetracked by turning 30, but I’m excited to be posting this recipe today and wrapping up the week of recipes tomorrow with the fifth and final recipe!

When time is really crunched but I’m looking for a healthy meal for our family I typically reach for a big salad and toss a bunch of different fun ingredients in for variety. This BLT salad is on pretty heavy rotation at our house in some form or another.

Also: I used to think I wasn’t a bread baker. Until I discovered Pinch of Yum’s Miracle No Knead Bread and it changed everything. It’s so incredibly easy, cheap and fun to make. Yes, fun! I mean, when you bake bread that looks and tastes as good as a bakery, you start to really get excited about the whole thing.

BLT Chopped Salad
Author: 
 
Ingredients
  • 2 hearts of Romaine lettuce
  • 12 oz. bacon, crisp cooked and chopped
  • 2 medium ripe tomatoes (1 used grape tomatoes because we had some from the garden)
  • 2 oz. feta cheese, crumbled
  • Dressing of choice (Joe and I like to mix Balsamic Vinaigrette and Poppyseed 50/50)
Instructions
  1. Chop Romaine lettuce into bite-size pieces. In a large bow, toss together the lettuce, bacon, tomatoes and feta. Drizzle lightly with salad dressing of choice and toss to coat. Spoon mixture into bowls. Serve with homemade bread.
  2. *Vegetarian Option: Add bacon at the end. Serve the veg option with chickpeas or black beans instead of the bacon.

Ā