Friday, June 3, 2011

Weekend Fare: Brunch & A Giveaway!

This Giveaway is now closed. Thanks to all who entered!

I'm late getting this post put together. My husband was home working on some paperwork today and the boys were busily cleaning their rooms. As the hours passed and we still really hadn't eaten breakfast, I decided it was the perfect morning to make brunch. And thus this morning became a lovely morning of cooking for the men I love!

We enjoyed breakfast egg sandwiches and a fruited spinach salad. It was wonderful to spend time preparing for the day and feasting on the delicious, seasonal food.

The sandwich began with an inspiring loaf of rosemary olive oil bread. I decided to use parmesan as the cheese because I felt it would compliment the bread and not detract from it. The combination of flavors and textures proved fabulous.

Print These Recipes

1 egg
fresh grated parmesan cheese (or whatever cheese you prefer)
pepper to taste
2 slices bread (I used rosemary olive oil bread)
1 slice cooked bacon
a few leaves of baby spinach
2-3 slices of tomato

Fry the egg in a litte butter - breaking the yoke. When it is almost finished, sprinkle parmsan cheese and allow to melt. Sprinkle with a little pepper.

Toast the bread - I put it under the broiler to crisp one side, leaving the other side soft. Butter one side of each piece.

To Build:
Top first slice of bread with baby spinach, then bacon, then the egg, then the tomato and top with remaining slice of bread. Serve immediately.

The salad was a delightful combination of fresh. The granola was perhaps the most interesting and most surprising addition. It took the salad right over the top and solidified it as a brunch salad. Simple and delicious.


Baby spinach or mixed greens
Creamy Balsamic Dressing (or dressing of your choice - a sweet poppy seed would also be lovely)
Fresh berries (I used raspberries and sliced strawberries)

Toss the greens with the dressing and place on plate. Top with berries and granola. Serve.


It's been a very  LONG time since we've had a giveaway! Things have been busy and quite frankly, I just haven't gotten around to it! However, a very thoughtful and generous reader and friend offered us this delightul book to giveaway. Thank you!

Do you like to entertain and set a beautiful table? Do you wonder how to pull together things you may already have to create ambience? Do you just enjoy creativity and love looking at beautiful inspiring photos? Then this is the book for you! The gorgeous photos of table ideas for all occasions will definitely inspire you. You can keep it simple or dress a table the would make Martha Stewart proud. Table Inspirations by Emily Chalmers is a lovely addition to any home. You won't be disappointed!

Here's the all important information on HOW TO ENTER:

- Leave a comment on this post telling us 1 of your favorite summer dishes or a favorite summer recipe.
- Make sure we have a way to contact you!

For additional entries (just leave us a comment telling us which ones you have done!):
- Subscribe via the link to the right or with google reader.
- Add us to your blog roll.
- Join our facebook group – The Cooks Next Door.
- Facebook about this giveaway.
- Tweet about this giveaway.
- Blog about this giveaway.

There you go! You could earn as many as 7 entries. And if you already are in our group, subscribe etc, let us know and we will add in the extra entries!

This giveaway will be closed on Tuesday, June 7 and the winner announced on Wednesday, June 8!


  1. One of my favorite summer recipes is "Corn and Black Bean Salad." I love making this. It does not require and oven. It is QUICK to throw together and can be served with grilled chicken and a salad. It's a WONDERFUL simple meal.

    1/4 cup balsamic vinegar
    2 tablespoons olive oil
    1/2 teaspoon sea salt
    1/2 teaspoon raw sugar
    1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
    1/2 teaspoon ground cumin
    1/2 teaspoon chili powder
    3 tablespoons chopped fresh cilantro
    1 (15 ounce) can black beans, rinsed and drained
    1 package of corn, cooked per package directions

    Mix balsamic vinegar, olive oil, sea salt, raw sugar, black pepper, cumin, and chili powder together. Pour over black beans and corn mixture. Garnish with cilantro and refrigerate until ready to eat.

  2. I subscribed to the link at the right.

  3. My favorite summer recipe is a simple pasta salad with vegetables fresh from the garden!

  4. Our favorite summer meal: Marinate in olive oil and pressed garlic: fresh tomatoes, green pepper and basil. Add fresh mozzarella cheese and pasta. Salt and pepper to taste.

    I am also part of the facebook crowd for your blog

  5. My favorite summer meal is a simple BLT with a side of fresh Illinois sweet corn. I usually toast both slices of bread for the sandwich, spreading a little mayonnaise on the top.The next step is to layer the fresh spinach leaves, crispy bacon strips, and thick garden-fresh slices of tomatoes. Serve with lightly-salted, lightly-buttered corn still on the cob and a tall glass of milk.

    (I subscribe to your blog, am a member of the facebook group, have you listed on my blog roll, and will facebook about this giveaway)

  6. One of my favorite easy and delicious summer dishes - especially when I have tomatoes and basil from the garden - is tomato, fresh mozzarella and basil salad.

    Slice tomatoes and mozzarella into 1/4 to 1/2" thick slices.

    Overlap tomato, mozzarella, and basil leaves in circles around a platter, or stack on individual plates.

    Drizzle with olive oil and season to taste with sea salt and pepper.

  7. I am a confirmed subscriber. Thanks!

  8. Breakfast sandwiches are my favorite! Try mine or click on the link at the bottom of my post for another blogger's amazing variation. DELISH!

  9. Could you make these in advance for the week by refridgerating?

  10. Hi Lindsey, I'm not sure if you are referring to the salad or the sandwich. They both are best made fresh - the sandwich would refrigerate very well since it is grilled. Hope that helps! Soups, lasagna, egg casserole - those things work well being made ahead and reheated for lunches.