At Pheasant Field, it doesn't matter if we are serving two or twenty-two guests; we want each one to Experience Genuine Hospitality. And each morning our intention is to prepare our guests an exceptional breakfast – one that makes them linger a little longer at the table feeling completely satisfied.
See? Happy, relaxed guests!
As an Innkeeper, with my focus on our guests, I find it challenging to develop a healthy morning routine for myself – and even harder to stick to it. More often than not, I have a good start. At 6AM, I'm chopping and sauteing vegetables and sipping a high performance supplemental vitamin tonic that is actually very tasty. In an hour's time, we're serving breakfast and I'm sipping a black decaf coffee. Yes, really, I said decaf. As we're working together, Robin and I talk about our upcoming schedules and work that needs to be completed around the inn. I'm also making a mental note to commit to my workout that day. I'm going to assume that I'm not alone in what happens next. Something will come up and I allow the hiccup in our day to interfere with my trip to the gym and I skip breakfast. Or, I gulp down a leftover biscuit which is delicious but full of butter.
It's practically impossible to make a healthy choice when these little buggers are staring at me!
Except when I serve Grilled Vegetable Hash Browns with Power Greens and Farm Fresh Eggs. I've given hash browns a makeover. Unlike common fried potato hash browns, I've added lots of vegetables and herbs. This dish is a winner on taste and very healthy too.
Not only is it delicious, but it's pretty too!
The recipe below makes about 12 servings, and I always have leftovers. I feel no guilt eating them because unlike some of our (delicious) entrees, there's no heavy cream, they're low in fat, loaded with A, B and C vitamins, and not served with butter and drizzled with maple syrup. As an entree these vegetable hash browns are just delicious topped with eggs. I prefer a poached or fried egg because the rich gooey yolk becomes a simple sauce over the hash brown.
Organic, free-range eggs from our very own chickens. Beautiful, right?
The Vegetable Hash Browns require shredded Butternut Squash, Onion, Potato, Zucchini and Carrots. Preparation is fast and simple if you use a food processor. Yes, it's bulky and has a bunch of accessories to clean, but dust it off and use it. The vegetables will be uniformly shredded in less than 5 minutes. Use a box grater if you don't have a processor – it works just as well and qualifies as an upper arm workout. To the shredded vegetables add power greens, herbs, a bit of Parmesan cheese, an egg to bind it and some seasoning.
Now seriously, isn't that pretty?
Combine everything thoroughly in the bowl and brown them on a lightly greased non-stick griddle.
When they're golden brown, they're ready to flip – carefully. Don't worry if they come apart a bit – just push the escaped pieces back into the side. Relax. They're hash browns. You can't mess them up.
See how the vegetables have caramelized? That's the tasty stuff! Hash browns should be crunchy and brown on the outside and soft inside. After both sides are brown, transfer the hash browns to a cookie sheet and finish them in a 300 degree oven for 15 minutes.
Then top them with eggs and serve with more greens. And a side of sausage. But remember the greens! You can't have too many greens.
Okay – now I'm headed to the gym!
Grilled Vegetable Hash Browns with Power Greens and Farm Fresh Eggs
I developed this recipe several years ago after watching Giada De Laurentiis on Food Network. Originally a casserole-style dish, I modified the recipe to increase the variety of vegetables and created a lighter version by reducing the amount of egg and omitting breadcrumbs. The vegetable hash browns are healthy and the entree is gluten free.
· 1 medium Onion
· 2 medium Potatoes
· 3 C shredded Butternut Squash (about ½ small Butternut Squash)
· 1 large Carrot
· 1 Zucchini
· ½ C shredded Parmesan Cheese
· ½ C Parsley, chopped
· 1 T Fresh Thyme
· 1 C Watercress (or other power greens such as Arugula, or chopped Kale)
· 1 large Egg or 2 Egg Whites
· Salt & Pepper to taste
1. Preheat oven to 300o
2. Line a large mixing bowl with a kitchen towel. Set aside.
3. Cut, peel and remove seeds of butternut squash. Using a food processor shred enough squash to amount to about 3 cups – firmly packed. Add to large mixing bowl lined with a kitchen towel.
4. Continue to process the remaining onion, potato, carrot, and zucchini.
5. Add all shredded vegetables to the towel-lined bowl, toss with 1 teaspoon of salt and set aside for about 10 minutes.
6. Pull the corners of the towel together and form a ball. Squeeze the liquid from the vegetables over a sink. Dump the vegetables from the towel back into the large bowl.
7. Add remaining ingredients to bowl: Parmesan cheese, herbs, power greens, egg and a bit of salt & pepper. Stir to combine.
8. Glaze a non-stick griddle with a tablespoon of oil or spray with non-stick spray. Measure ¾ cup per serving and cook the hash browns until they are brown and crispy. Flip carefully. When both sides are brown, transfer to a rack and bake at 300 degrees for about 15 minutes.
9. Dress the plate with power greens, and top the hash browns with farm fresh eggs to prepared as the guest requests.