I just cooked dinner for the whole family for the first time since Nora started eating “real” food… and mama needs a glass of wine.
I know that may be a little surprising. You see, ever since Nora was itty bitty, the hubby and I have had dinner after she’s in bed. With her bedtime creeping a little bit later, though, we have been discussing starting to eat dinner together as a family before she goes to bed, and this weekend we decided to try it out.
In theory, it should have been fine. Nora was playing outside with her daddy and some other kids from the neighborhood, and I ventured inside to get dinner started so I could have everything on the table by 6. But, you know what they say about best-laid plans.
Nora has been pretty cranky from teething lately,* and combine that with mounting frustration from her legs just not being quite long enough to ride the tricycle she wanted to ride, and ka-blooey. Inside comes the hubby with a very upset munchkin, and all she wanted was her mommy. Mommy’s lap, and Mommy’s attention — nothing else would do. One can’t very well cook migas with a child sitting on one’s lap on the floor.
* Those two-year molars, I tell ya. No fun at all.
The hubby pinch-hit for a while, with me feeding him instructions, and then eventually Nora was feeling better and ready to play for a while. Daddy was an acceptable playmate, so I took back over the dinner preparations. Of course, by this time, it was nigh on dinnertime, and Nora started begging for crispy tortilla strips the moment she saw them come out of the pan. With a little daddy-run interference and fancy footwork, I was able to heat up some broccoli and get that and some berries on the table for her to munch on while I finished dinner. Whew. Finally it was time for the hubby and I to sit down and eat, too.
The migas were good, fortunately, despite their haphazard preparation. Nora enjoyed them thoroughly, peppers and all… although she might have preferred a big plate of tortilla strips heaped with sour cream and cheese instead.
Mama will be testing out some crock pot and other make-ahead meals soon to try to avert this situation in the future. So, help a mother out: What are your favorite make-ahead meals?
For now, though, it’s time to sit down and enjoy a glass of wine. I highly recommend the migas, as breakfast or dinner, but try to make them when there’s not a clingy toddler around.
Adapted from this recipe from Stella Cooks
2 Tbs butter
4 corn tortillas, cut intro 1/4″ strips
1/4 cup milk or cream
1 tsp salt
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
1 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp smoked paprika**
1-2 minced hot peppers, to taste (jalapeños or serranos work best)
2 small sweet peppers (or 1 large), stemmed, seeded, and chopped
1 small red onion (or 1/2 large), finely chopped
grated cheddar or Monterey Jack cheese, for topping
sour cream, for topping
salsa, for topping
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the tortilla strips and fry until just crispy, stirring occasionally. Remove the strips to a paper towel to drain. Turn the stovetop heat to low.
Meanwhile, crack the eggs into a medium bowl. Whisk lightly until the yolks are broken, then drizzle in the milk or cream, continuing to whisk. Add the salt, pepper, garlic powder, cumin, and smoked paprika and whisk lightly to mix. Then add the peppers and onions, stir lightly, and set aside.
Pour the egg mixture into the skillet, and allow it to sit for just about a minute, then begin to stir. The mixture will quickly begin to firm up. Continue to lightly fold the eggs over repeatedly until they reach the perfect consistency.
Spread the tortilla strips over two plates. Top with the scrambled egg mixture. Sprinkle the grated cheese over the top of the eggs, and add generous dollops of sour cream and salsa to the tops. Serve immediately, while still hot.
** What do you mean you don’t have any? Go get some! It’s my favorite spice ever, and, as a vegetarian, I use it in all kinds of dishes to help substitute for the smoky flavor of bacon.