Open-Face BLT with Eggs on the Sunny-Side

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Open-Face BLT with eggsThis fork-and-knife sandwich goes great with a brunch Bloody Mary, or with the more kid-friendly Strawberry-Limeade (page 000) or Watermelon Spritzer (page 000). I like your basic Oscar Meyer bacon, but you can also substitute turkey bacon, or a vegetarian option, if you prefer.

Serves: 4

Total Time: 15 minutes

INGREDIENTS

For the sandwiches:

  • 1 pound bacon
  • 2 6-inch baguettes, sliced lengthwise
  • 4 large butter lettuce leaves
  • 2 medium tomatoes, sliced
  • Salt to taste
  • Black pepper to taste
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, or use non-stick cooking spray
  • 4 eggs

For the tarragon mayo:

  • 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
  • 2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon (or 1 ½ teaspoons dried Italian seasoning)

WHAT TO DO

Cook the bacon according to package directions.

While the bacon is cooking, combine the mayonnaise and the tarragon in a small bowl, and blend well.

Set the broiler to high, and toast the four halves of baguette in the oven until they’re slightly brown. It should only take about a minute.

Spread the tarragon mayo on the toasted baguettes. Layer on the butter lettuce and tomato. Season the tomato with salt and pepper.

Spray a 10-inch nonstick pan with nonstick cooking spray, or melt 1 tablespoon of butter for each batch of eggs, and heat on medium-low. You can make two sunny side-up eggs at a time. Crack the eggs into the pan, keeping the heat low so the eggs don’t brown. Cook the eggs for 3 to 5 minutes, or until the both the yolks and the whites thicken and set. Layer one egg onto each sandwich, and serve warm.

Recipes © Antonia Lofaso as printed in The Busy Mom’s Cookbook by Antonia Lofaso (Avery/ Penguin Group, 2012). Images courtesy of Alex Martinez.

Caramel Almond Popcorn

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Caramel Almond PopcornMicrowave popcorn has convinced us that cooking fresh popcorn is hard or time-consuming. It’s not. You can do it on the stovetop, and it only takes a little oil and a few minutes. Just follow the package directions. Or you can always use microwave or premade, plain popcorn in this recipe.
Serves: 4

Total Time: 30 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • ½ cup unsalted butter
  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • ¼ cup light corn syrup
  • 1 tablespoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon baking soda
  • 8 cups popped popcorn
  • 2 cups raw whole almonds

WHAT TO DO

Combine the butter, sugar, corn syrup, and salt in a medium saucepot. On medium heat, bring the mixture to a boil, and let it boil for 2 to 3 minutes without stirring any more.

Once the caramel has thickened, remove it from the heat and stir in the vanilla and baking soda.

Spread the popcorn in a large baking dish. Pour the caramel over the popcorn, using a spoon to toss the popcorn and almonds around and make sure they’re all coated.

As the caramel cooks, stir a few more times to keep the caramel from sinking to the bottom of the dish.

Recipes © Antonia Lofaso as printed in The Busy Mom’s Cookbook by Antonia Lofaso (Avery/ Penguin Group, 2012). Images courtesy of Alex Martinez.

Shrimp Lo Mein with Bell Pepper, Edamame, and Scallions

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Shrimp Lo Mein with Bell Pepper Edamame Scallions

Lo Mein noodles are fun to eat, and they make a great dish for kids to practice using chopsticks.

Serves: 4

Total Time: 30 minutes

INGREDIENTS

  • 1 12-ounce package dried Lo Mein noodles
  • 1 teaspoon sesame oil
  • 2 tablespoons peanut oil, or vegetable oil
  • 2 cups peeled and deveined 16-20 shrimp, tail on or off, as preferred
  • Pinch salt
  • ½ headNapacabbage, shredded
  • ½ medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • 1 ½ cups out of the shell edamame, defrosted
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded, sliced thin
  • Dash salt
  • 1 ½ cups oyster sauce
  • 4 scallions, including whites, chopped

THE BUSY MOM’S TIP: Chow Mein noodles can be substituted for the Lo Mein noodles, but rice noodles and udon noodles won’t work for this recipe. They’re harder noodles and will absorb too much of the liquid.

WHAT TO DO

Cook the Lo Mein noodles according to the package directions. They’ll only take 1 or 2 minutes. Drain the noodles and rinse with cold water. Season with 1 teaspoon sesame oil, and set aside.

In a wok or 14-inch sauté pan, heat 2 tablespoons peanut oil on high.  Add the shrimp and season with a dash of salt.

Cook the shrimp for about 1 minute, until almost done. They should be partially pink, but still showing some of their grey color and should still be somewhat flexible. Transfer the shrimp to a bowl.

Add the cabbage, onion, edamame, and red bell pepper to the pan. Add a dash of salt and sauté on high. As the vegetables develop color, keep stirring them until they’re slightly browned.

Reduce the heat to low. Add the shrimp and oyster sauce, and let it all warm through.

After sauce is warm, add the noodles, and remove the pan from heat. Toss the noodles 3 or 4 times to coat.

Garnish with scallions.

Recipes © Antonia Lofaso as printed in The Busy Mom’s Cookbook by Antonia Lofaso (Avery/ Penguin Group, 2012). Images courtesy of Alex Martinez.

Antonia’s Winning Recipe: Mussels in White Wine with Fennel

Mussels in White Wine with Fennel -BravoTVRecipe: Mussels in White Wine with Fennel

Recreate the seafood dish that was the winning recipe for Antonia Lofaso on Bravo’s Top Chef. Try the recipe for yourself!

by: Antonia Lofaso

Ingredients

  • 2 sprigs basil
  • 2 pounds black Canadian mussels
  • 1 teaspoon chili flakes
  • 1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 fennel bulbs, shaved thin
  • 2 tablespoons garlic, chopped
  • 2 sprigs marjoram
  • Salt, to taste
  • Sugar, to taste
  • 2 sprigs thyme
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 cups white wine

Method:

  1. Heat olive oil and butter in a large sauté pan. Add garlic and chili flakes. Cook until aromatic.
  2. Then add in the fennel bulbs and cook until soft. Add the white wine, salt, and sugar, and cook until dissolved.
  3. Add the unopened and cleaned mussels followed by the herbs, and cover the pan.
  4. Cook over medium heat until all mussels have opened. About 3-4 minutes.

Watch the Video

The Official Website of Chef Antonia Lofaso