Skip to main content

The McFerrin: Eggs, Potatoes, and More



The McFerrins ready to hit the road.
A while back my fellow farmers market enthusiast and blogger, Askans, wondered on Twitter why there weren't more recipes affiliated with farmers markets information. I'm paraphrasing him a bit, but essentially his idea was that if we want people to shop at farmers markets, they need to know what to do with the items they purchase. 

Over the years, I've posted a number of different recipes that use seasonal ingredients. They often came from my own garden or the farm where I helped out in Tokyo. The recipes were either my own creative concoction or taught to me by neighbors, friends, or farmers. I've enjoyed making them all and look forward to them as the seasons come in turn.

The following recipe is the first in a series aimed at helping people find a use for all those wonderful things they see at the markets. Made for us and subsequently taught to me by a Canadian family of five on the last bit of their year-long, round-the-world trip, I call it the McFerrin. It can be made year-round and with just about anything you have in the refrigerator or market bag. At home, pre-bike-tour-life, they made it in the oven and gave it a nice topping of shredded cheese near the end. I don't have an oven, so I just make it on the stove top.

The McFerrin

Ingredients
4-5 eggs
3 Tbsp. milk*
2 Tbsp. olive oil
2 small potatoes or sweet potatoes, sliced somewhat thinly
1 sliced carrot, head of broccoli, or whatever veg you have on hand
130 grams salmon or other fish (no bones!), tofu, sausage, ham, etc.**
Handful of chopped spinach or other greens
Salt and pepper and other herbs and spices to taste

Mix eggs, milk, salt, pepper, and other spices together in a bowl and set aside.

Heat 1 Tbsp. olive oil in a frying pan and lightly saute meat, fish, or tofu. The aim is to cook it a bit so you're not eating raw or half-warm/half-cooked protein in what is an otherwise delightfully hot dish. Remove from pan and set aside.

Let the layering begin.
Layer bottom of pan with potatoes. Cook until they soften a bit Layer in other items and pour the egg-milk mixture over the top. I tend to let things settle down some and then fiddle with the egg edges a bit. I lift it up to help the egg mixture move about and cook, and to make sure things aren't sticking to the bottom.

Ready for the egg!
Once I'm satisfied that the egg is setting nicely and the middle is cooking, I put the lid on the top and let it ride on low heat for about 10 minutes or so. This can vary and should be monitored. Believe you me, it is possible to burn the bottom.

With the egg to hold it all together.
It is also possible at this point to cut it into fourths and flip the pieces. This isn't easy and, depending on the thickness of your layers, may not be necessary. However, while making a recent version of this, I got a bit carried away with my amounts and had to flip it.

Cooking away!

When the egg is set and the middle cooked, serve it up!

Caveats
Depending on the size of your pan, you may need to increase the amounts. The McFerrins made two pans of this when they were visiting us, and one was double the size of the pan pictured here.

If the middle doesn't set or the ingredients seem cold, never fear. Plop it back in the pan and heat it more. If it doesn't look picture perfect, don't fret. I always say that a messy meal is a tasty meal.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Finding Heirloom Seeds in Japan

Drying pods of heirloom Hutterite Soup Beans. Since moving to Japan eight years ago, one of my greatest challenges as a farmer-gardener has been to find heirloom or open-pollinated seeds. The majority of seeds available are not GMO (genetically modified organisms) as Japan, at this point, doesn't accept this material. Most seeds, though, are nearly all F1 varieties. Heirloom and F1 Varieties In plant breeding, F1 is the name given to the first generation of a cross between two true breeding parents. For example, if I decide to cross an Amish Paste Tomato with another heirloom variety tomato such as Emmy, in hopes of getting a gold paste tomato, the resulting generation of fruit is F1. In order to get that tomato of my culinary dreams, I'll need to choose members of that first generation that are headed in a direction I like - early ripening, medium-sized fruit, good taste - and save their seeds. I'll plant them and repeat the process again and again over time unti

Satoimo: One of Japan's Favorite Slimy Things

Satoimo in all their hairy glory. This post first appeared in slightly different form on Garden to Table as part of the 2012  Blogathon . The website has since moved on to the ether, but the post is still a good one. After all, people here are still eating satoimo on a daily basis, and many others are just seeing these little potato-like objects for the first time. Enjoy! Satoimo is one of Japan's odder vegetables. Under it's rough, slightly furry skin is white flesh that is a little bit slimy even raw, and with a gentle nutty flavor.* Baked, grilled, steamed with dashi, or deep-fried satoimo stands well on its own or paired up with other vegetables and meats in a wide variety of soups and stews . (The leaves are also edible.) Satoimo stores well, and like any root crop worth the effort, stocks are just running low on this household favorite as the farmers in my area of Tokyo get ready to put a new crop in the ground in May. I cannot say I was a fan of this l

Goma Ai Shingiku - Sesame and Chrysanthemum Greens

Last week I had the pleasure of helping some friends work in their parents garden not too far away. Tucked behind the house, the garden sits on a former house lot. When it came up for sale about five years ago, my friend's father jumped at the chance. Open land in Tokyo can be hard to find and expensive, but for a retired professional looking for a little spot to till in the city it was an opportunity to good to pass up. Now, it is a garden to envy. As we came through the gate rose, lily, and peony blooms greeted us with great shouts of color while rows of vegetables stood tidily at attention on the sunny center stage. Small fruit trees along with one of the biggest sansho trees I've seen yet stood quietly here and there. Near waist-high sweet corn, bushy young potato plants, cherry tomatoes, eggplants, and beans were preparing their summer fruits, while a handful of still quite luscious looking winter vegetables like komatsuna, mizuna, and kabu held one last ro