How To Boil Water: Breakfast Basics

At the ripe old age of 22 (I’m obviously all grown up), I’ve come to realize that cooking in the footsteps of my parents is cathartic and somewhat artistic for me. I love the process of picking out a meal, finding the ingredients, and combining them to create something delicious that can bring people together. I'm fully embracing my old lady tendacies. I've begun the new adventure that is graduate school in a city far away from my family. I have no parents to make my dinner and no cafeteria to slop a sub-par dinner on my tray. I'm definitely not complaining about the absence of greasy meat and soggy vegetables, but cooking is now so much more than just sliding a student ID on the worst Monday nights. Lucky for me, my years of watching and assisting in the kitchen have stocked my cooking arsenal with enough basics and creativity to get by. Still, there are those of us that can't boil water, much less whip up a balanced dinner every night. And no, ramen doesn't qualify as balanced. (Look for a column about how to change that shortly, because even ramen deserves its chance to shine.)

Follow along and soon you'll know your way around the kitchen, how to make a mean chicken dinner, and how to serve up a dessert so tasty you'll want to eat it for breakfast. And if you do choose last night's dessert over that gross granola, we'll be right there beside you. Who says chocolate chip cookies aren't made for the morning?

breakfast

Let’s begin with the “most important meal of the day,” which is conveniently my favorite. I am a sucker for breakfast and brunch. I have been known to dream of the idea of a brunch wedding. Who wouldn’t kill for a pancake (or four) and a mimosa (bottomless, of course) at a wedding? Sadly, most mornings forget the mimosas and pancakes.

But why not? With just a few essential ingredients and skills, breakfast can be a delicious, quick, and easy meal.

There are 3 things that can easily make the perfect breakfast: eggs, grains, and fruit. We’ll start with eggs, which are quick, easy, and cheap. AKA perfect.

Scrambled (classic)
Perfect for those budding chefs who aren't confident with the difference between a spatula and a soufflé, this pairs with just about anything you want for the rest of your breakfast.

You’ll need:
2 Eggs (for one person, I find that 2-3 is enough)
Salt & pepper
¼ cup shredded
Cheddar cheese
1 tsp. milk
Non-stick pan

1: Crack eggs in to a small mixing bowl and mix in salt and pepper (to taste, really just a sprinkle of both is enough for me) and 1 teaspoon (tsp) of milk.
2: Pour into a non-stick pan and let eggs begin to cook at medium heat. After about 1 minute they should start to cook and stick together more. At this point, use a spatula (wood, plastic or rubber is best for the pan) to scrape the eggs off the bottom and sides of the pan.
3: Add the cheese! Put in as much or as little as you want. Cheese is known to cure most wounds, so the more the merrier. Sprinkle over the top of the eggs as they start to harden.
4: Once the eggs reach your desired consistency you’re done with enough time to browse ANNA Magazine.

Scrambled (getting crazy)

Follow the steps as above, but mix it up a little! Adding a few ingredients to your eggs can completely change your breakfast.

You’ll need:
2 eggs
1 Tbsp. milk
Salt & pepper
Herb & garlic goat cheese (It won't break your bank: you can find this at any Publix or Aldi)
1 tomato
Baby spinach

Crumble up the goat cheese, dice about ½ of the tomato, and tear up the spinach before adding to eggs. You’re good to go with enough time to look for your keys, bag, and sanity before running out the door.

Omelet (whoa nelly)
An omelet sounds difficult and look fancy, but in reality is pretty simple to make. As with most things in life, this is the ideal combination. 

You’ll need:
The same ingredients as either of the above recipes. You can include any extras (cheeses, veggies, seasonings, etc.) that you prefer.
1: Mix together eggs and extras in a mixing bowl as you did in both above recipes.
2: After spraying a small round pan with non-stick spray, pour mixture into the pan and let cover the entire surface area.
3: Allow to “harden” for a few moments and then ,using a soft spatula, carefully edge under one side of the circle and flip one side over the other. It won’t be perfect, but you’ll get better with practice.
4: Leave your omelet cooking on this side for a few minutes (on low-medium heat), and then flip it to the other side once most of the liquid has hardened.
5: Once your omelet is as browned as you like, you are essentially on the same level of Emeril. Flip on a plate and pat yourself on the back.

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Lauren could eat breakfast for every meal of the day. She would do anything for a chocolate chip cookie, and occasionally, she likes to play hide & seek with her pup. She is a proud (though teased) member of the house of Hufflepuff, a lover of travel, greatly enjoys movies about sports, and is addicted to murder mystery novels. You can find Lauren on Instagram @lauren_elizabeth793.