If you’ve eaten breakfast at a B&B or a hotel in England, chances are you’ve encountered a baked tomato slice or a fried tomato half on the plate along with your bangers and eggs. While a common sight on that side of the pond, we don’t usually put tomatoes on our breakfast menus. But if you are thinking about ways to get more veggies into your diet, here are a few ideas to get you started:
Do you own a juicer? If so, crank it up and start experimenting. Fresh juice made from carrots and celery, with a bit of parsley tossed in, is delicious, invigorating, and ﬁlling. Add a small beet, greens, cucumber, tomatoes, and other fresh herbs, too. And for a little sweetness, add a small apple or a few berries. (If you’re shopping for a juicer, go the extra mile and buy a sturdy model that can produce at least two cups of juice before you need to clean out the pulp.)
It only takes a few minutes to sauté some chopped veggies and put them in a wrap. Create a blend of onion, bell pepper, mushrooms, and zucchini (toss in some cooked beans if you wish) and cook in a lightly greased skillet over medium-high heat for a few minutes until soft. Season to taste with salt and pepper and add a sprinkling of dried or fresh herbs before rolling into a wrap or stuﬃng into a piece of pita bread.
The next time you toast some bread, mash half an avocado and spread it on top. It’s a healthy green substitute for butter and jam. (Wrap the other half in plastic wrap and refrigerate to keep it from browning.)
No one bats an eye about seeing home fries for breakfast. When you’re roasting or baking potatoes, save any leftovers, dice, and sauté in olive oil until crispy as a breakfast treat. Use leftover mashed potatoes or sweet potatoes, too. Form a scoop of them into a “nest” on a pie pan, drop in one whole egg or one beaten egg, and bake in the oven at 350° F for about 15 minutes, until the egg is set to your liking.
Spinach cooks in minutes, making it a great quick-breakfast food. Heat a little bit of olive oil (about 1 teaspoon) in a medium-size frying pan and add about 2 cups of chopped fresh spinach. Cook over medium heat, turning occasionally, for about three minutes, until the spinach wilts and most of the moisture in the pan has evaporated. Beat an egg or an egg white and pour it over the spinach. Cook, stirring, for several minutes, until the egg is set. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Zucchini pancakes make a great weeknight meal, but they also taste terriﬁc reheated for breakfast. Shred 3 medium zucchini into a colander, sprinkle with 1 teaspoon of salt, and let sit for about 10 minutes. Squeeze dry with your hands, and then squeeze again in a kitchen towel to remove as much moisture as possible. Combine the zucchini in a bowl with 3 eggs, ½ cup ﬂour, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 tablespoon olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste. Mix well, drop by spoonfuls onto a hot, lightly oiled skillet, and cook over medium heat for about 5-8 minutes per side, until nicely browned. Serve with applesauce or plain yogurt. (I haven’t tried it, but I suspect this recipe would also work with grated sweet potatoes.)