Breakfast in minutes: One-Pan Crispy Bacon and Roasted Asparagus with Baked Eggs

Our weekend farmer’s market outing was a soggy affair, the kind where you dash through the droplets, a child in each hand, and make a beeline for the tarps. It was not the time nor the place to leisurely stroll from stall to stall admiring the butter tarts and the goose eggs; instead I headed straight for the asparagus.

I picked up two fat bundles, thinking I would -finally- get a batch of pickles put up, but the asparagus didn’t last more than a few hours in my kitchen. On Sunday, as the water dripped down off the porch roof and I faced yet another chilly, wet day, I wrenched open the fridge and pulled out bacon, eggs – and the local asparagus.

We needed something substantial and beautiful to beat the weather blahs. Strong coffee is good and all, but it only does so much. This quick breakfast of crispy bacon, eggs, and roasted asparagus hit the spot and I’m a little shy to admit that Danny and I polished off the entire pan between the two of us.

Later on the sun came out, but at that point, the weather didn’t matter anymore.

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Crunch-crunch: A week of (make ahead) spring salads in jars

Rainy conditions and toe-tingling cool temperatures dissuaded any notions I had of going out this past weekend. Instead I donned Danny’s hoodie for an extra layer of warmth, and flew about the place, tackling my to-do list with vigor, a cup of tea never too far from my reach.

I managed to tuck a delicate chicken and coconut curry with lentils away in the freezer, accompanied by a dozen soft chocolate ginger cookies, and a few other goodies. Danny is plenty proficient in the kitchen, but he’ll have his hands full looking after our three kiddos when I’m away; the least I can do is prep a few meals.

I even assembled a batch of salads in jars, so they are certain to get a serving of vegetables at least once a day.

Layered salad-in-a-jar is another one of my favorite strategies for warm weather batch cooking. The salad dressing can be added right in the jar and when the ingredients are packed correctly everything stays very crisp and fresh.

All you need is a quick shake, a fork and you can crunch away to your hearts’ content.

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Butter Roasted Mushrooms & Ramps with Lemon

Did you get out in the beautiful spring sunshine yesterday? I tell you what, after the excitement that was last week, I enjoyed a quieter weekend outdoors, puttering in the garden and searching for wildflowers in the forest with the children.

Today there’s an ache in my shoulders I haven’t felt in a while, the result of turning the soil in the raised beds with a spade, and raking the last of the old leaves. It feels good.

With the arrival of warmer evenings, no doubt you are as excited as I am to move away from the kitchen stove and stand over the grill for a change. We scrubbed off the patio table and dined al fresco twice on the weekend, keeping thing simple with steaks and sausages – and a side of buttered mushrooms with ramps.

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Avocado Egg Salad Lettuce Wraps with Bacon (paleo, dairy-free)

Avocado Egg Salad Lettuce Wraps with bacon on simplebites.net

Was your Easter lovely? I hope it was. And now it is April? Gracious, I’m so ready for spring, thank you.

Today’s post is going to be quick. I’ve got the family around on this holiday Monday, and we’ve got all sorts of plans that don’t involve mama working. Heehee.

We only dyed a few Easter eggs last weekend, using blueberries for a light purple hue that matched the simple grape hyacinth table centerpiece. Then to use up the boiled eggs, I made these avocado egg salad wraps for a quick lunch.

The flavors were inspired by my favorite Guacamole Deviled Eggs, but these wraps are much faster to put together. You can leave off the bacon for a vegetarian version or spread the mixture between two toasts for a more traditional egg salad sandwich.

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7 easy steps towards a Paleo diet {recipe: Pumpkin Pancakes}

Paleo Pumpkin Pancakes on simplebites.net

The following is a guest post from Hanna of Honey & Huckleberries. Welcome, Hanna!

I’ve always tried to eat well.  Whole foods, lots of veggies, dark chocolate (because it’s healthy then, right?), all that good stuff.  So when my best friend told me that she had started to eat paleo, and then explained what that entailed, I have to admit I thought it was a bit crazy.

The Paleo diet cuts out processed foods, sugar, all grains, legumes, and usually dairy.  I was very excited that she was trying to feed her family less take-out, but not eating whole wheat?  Brown rice?  Cheese!?  Even if it was helping her lose weight, I couldn’t see how it could be healthy to cut out entire food groups and replace them with bacon.

It didn’t help that I was pregnant with my second little girl at the time, and horribly sick.  Bread was one of the only things I could keep down, no one was taking away my bread.

Then Sunny was born, my sweet wonderful baby girl.  She ended up with terrible eczema and I went on an elimination diet that was ironically very close to the paleo diet.  Her skin cleared up and I lost five pounds in a month.

It turned out that her issue was with dairy so I added wheat back in, only to find that it made me feel really weird.  My lovely, homemade, whole grain bread made my stomach hurt if I ate it for breakfast and gave me heartburn whenever I had some.  This had always been the case, but I hadn’t noticed until I cut it out completely.  I was pretty annoyed.

I didn’t want to believe it, but clearly the wheat was not my friend.  I did some serious reading and came to the conclusion that our family was going paleo.  I convinced my husband, tossed the toddler’s crackers and started our journey towards healthier eating.

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