“If you can’t explain it to a six year old, you don’t understand it yourself.”
~ Albert Einstein
I am a big fan of using simple ingredients thrown together to make easy meals. Meals that ANYONE can cook. (Even people with no cooking experience, and people who have rarely ventured into a kitchen or whose repertoire consists of toast, take-away and two-minute noodles. Yep, I’m talking to you, Ben!)
I make variations of this particular meal often. It tastes delicious fresh from the oven, but it’s also great cold and it makes a good lunchbox filler.
Here’s what you’ll need. Adjust your quantities up or down, depending on how many mouths you’re feeding or how many meals you’d like to get out of this dish!
Grab a high-sided baking dish. It doesn’t matter what shape it is. (Or you could use smaller individual dishes. But that’s a lot more washing up.) Line it with some baking paper so that there is less mess to clean up later.
Broccoli. Bacon. Red capsicum (bell pepper). Fresh or canned corn. Feta or grated tasty cheese. Salt and pepper. Fresh parsley or green onion (Shallots).
Really, you can add so many kinds of fresh vegetables to this recipe. If they are hard vegetables like carrots – grate them to reduce cooking time. You can also use thin slices of pumpkin, sweet potato, potato.
Eggs. For my baking dish (30cm x 25 cm) I used 8 large eggs. You could use more! Some milk, soy milk, almond or rice milk to mix with it. I used about a cup. What you are essentially making is a simple custard.
When you have lined your baking tray preheat your oven to 180 degrees – 350 degrees fahrenheit. (If your oven is fan forced drop the temperature by 10 degrees.) Then go ahead and prepare the filling for your slice while the oven is heating.
Chop your bacon into rough small pieces. Make sure you have removed the rind first or it will be really chewy. For my big baking dish I used 3 very big fat rashers, which gave me about a cup of bacon pieces. Use as much or as little bacon as you want. You can also substitute ham or cold roasted meats for the bacon. Vegetarians may enjoy using a seasoned tofu or tempeh.
Cut broccoli into small florets. Throw these directly into your paper-lined pan. When the base of the pan is well covered with broccoli you have enough. Cauliflower also works well, or do a combo!
Remove the corn kernels from a fresh cob or two, or use a small (or large if you are a corn fan!) can of corn.
De-seed and chop up your capsicum (bell pepper).
Then chop up a good handful of parsley (only the leaves, not the stalks) or a couple of green onions (shallots).
Throw all of that into your baking tray and then use a large spoon or clean hands to mix it all together so that the ingredients are evenly distributed.
Sprinkle a pinch of salt and a good grind of pepper over the top.
Now crack your eggs into a large bowl and add the milk of your choice. Whisk it gently together with a fork so that the yolks become broken and everything is blended.
Add a half cup of crumbled feta or grated cheese to the top of the vegetable and bacon mixture. Try to spread it evenly. Go on – use a bit more cheese if cheese is your thing. 🙂
Pour the egg mixture into the baking tray. Use the fork you whisked the eggs with to gently poke the vegetables a bit to make sure that the egg mixture goes all the way to the bottom of the baking tray.
You’ll still have a few bits poking up that didn’t get covered. That’s okay. It will still cook and taste fine.
If you over-calculated and have too much egg mixture make another quick small individual serve in a bowl or ramekin or even some muffin cases! Just chuck a few bits of vegetable and cheese and maybe a little extra bacon or ham in there. Note: If you use small dishes grease them well with a little butter or oil or the egg and cheese will stick!
If you don’t have enough egg mixture, whisk another egg or two with a splash more milk and pour over. Use your best guess but don’t get stressed about it. It takes practice to work out quantities well.
Place baking dish into the oven and cook for forty minutes, or until golden and puffy on top and cooked through. You might want to check on the slice after thirty minutes baking time, just to see how it is going.
Serve on its own, with a spoonful of your favourite relish or chutney, or with some green leaves or a salad.
Any leftovers will keep in the fridge for up to four days.
PS – Ben, if you are reading this now, some time post my surgery in early September, you are an awesome husband and you have totally got this. It’s easy, babe. Promise!