By Susan Benton
Breakfast. My favorite meal of the day, my husbands least. I love the creativity that evolves when cooking with eggs, and that they are packed with protein. In an agreement I made with myself, I prepared or cooked my son and daughter breakfast every single morning from birth until graduation from high school, including weekends, with the exception of an overnight stay away at a friend house, or when visiting their grandparents. As my two grew, they learned to help with breakfast on the weekends, and fell victim to my breakfast for dinner scheme at least twice a month. It made for a fun “breakfast board game night” with some favorites being cheesy egg scramble , baked gouda grits with andouille sausage and shrimp, bacon of course (usually Benton’s) , grilled cheese toad in the hole, fill your own omelets and Croque Madame’s (my pick). Brunch on Sunday was a big deal in my home growing up, so I made it a big deal too. I loved waking up to a home filled with the smell of coffee brewing and bacon sizzling in a hot cast iron pan. Eggs more often than not have been a common denominator in most of our meals.
- Butter, for ramekins or cast iron individual servers
- Coarse salt
- 1 head fresh broccoli, steamed
- 6 large eggs ½ cup half-and-half
- Ground pepper ¾ cup shredded cheddar (3 ounces)
- Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Butter four 8-ounce ramekins; set aside.
- Bring a medium pot of salted water to a boil. Add broccoli and cook till tender (still firm not mush) Drain well; transfer to a cutting board, and blot dry with paper towels. Chop coarsely. In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, half-and-half, ½ teaspoon salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Stir in broccoli and cheese.
- Place ramekins on a rimmed baking sheet. Ladle broccoli mixture into ramekins, dividing evenly.
- Bake until golden brown, 35 to 40 minutes.
- Serve with crusty bread and a mixed-green salad, if desired.
Susan Benton is the go to resource for foodies visiting Pensacola to Panama City Beach. She is a food and travel journalist with published articles and photography in many local, regional and national publications. Her website is 30AEATS.com where she writes about the secrets of Gulf Coast food.