Sunday, February 20, 2011

Power Brunch: "Corntatta" and Cumin Spiced Sweet Potatoes


Who gets up with a mild hangover on a Sunday and whips up an inspired power brunch? This girl!

At first I thought I wouldn't have enough energy to make the breakfast I really wanted: a thick frittata with vegetables and some hearty homefries. A few sips of coffee, and a few rays of sunshine later, I opened the fridge and decided to just go for it.

I had a few leftover orphan items from the previous week's cooking: 1 giant sweet potato, 2 ears of raw corn, and a few elderly jalapeños. The peppers provided a latin inspiration, so I sprinkled the sweet potato cubes with cayenne and cumin.

The "corntatta" came about because it was really more corn than egg - which I did on purpose. I had so much corn once it was cut from the cobs, and I really just wanted to stick it together somehow using the eggs. Plus, my husband doesn't care for eggs too much, so I only used two. Served with tomato sauce and Frank's Red Hot, he didn't taste the eggs at all - just the crisp, crunchy corn. Hence, "corntatta".

Both the "corntatta" and potatoes came out awesome - much better than expected. The sweet potatoes balanced the crunchy/spicy corn really nicely. Next time I might add some herb to the corn, like cilantro or oregano - but it really doesn't need it, and I was too lazy to rinse and chop herbs today.

Corntatta
Serves 2 - 25 minutes

1 T margarine
1 small onion, diced
1 jalapeño, ribs removed and diced
2 C fresh corn (2 cobs)
2 eggs
2 T milk (or water)
Salt & Pepper
1/4 basic tomato (Pomodoro) sauce
2 T shredded cheddar cheese

Hot Sauce for serving
Heat oven to 425F.
1. In an 8" cast iron skillet, heat margarine over medium heat. Saute onions for 3 minutes. Add corn and jalapeño, stirring for 5 minutes. Season lightly with salt & pepper.

2. Whisk eggs and milk together with a fork and add to the pan. Stir everything together quickly so the whites don't separate. Remove from heat.

3. With a teaspoon, drop dots of tomato sauce onto the top of the mixture, reserving the rest of the sauce for serving. Sprinkle with a few shreds of cheese.

4. Bake at 425F for about 15 minutes, possibly longer if you've used a smaller pan or increased the recipe, because the mixture is deeper and may take longer to cook through. If you shake the pan side to side and the eggs don't jiggle in the middle, and they look puffy and stable, it's probably done - but you can always make a cut in the center to check.

5. Serve drizzled with tomato sauce and/or hot sauce.


*Basic tomato sauce:
Use whatever leftover tomato sauce you have on hand from pasta or pizza, such as this one I make often:
Saute garlic in olive oil for a couple minutes and add a can of tomato sauce or canned diced tomatoes (drained), or both. Season with salt, and chopped basil if desired. If using diced tomatoes, puree the sauce after simmerimg about 10 minutes.


Cumin Spiced Sweet Potato Homefries
Sweet Potato, peeled and cut into 1" pieces
Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Cayenne 
Cumin (ground)
Salt (preferably Grey Sea Salt)
Pepper

Heat oven to 425F. Drizzle oil on a baking sheet and arrange the potatoes in a single layer. Drizzle with oil and sprinkle very lightly with cayenne, cumin, salt and pepper. Bake until browned and tender, about 15-25 minutes. Flip them a few times to brown evenly.

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