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A&E >  Food

Eggs are versatile and always in season

Before the local growing season really takes off, there are always eggs.

The orbs are delicious cooked with herbs and an essential ingredient in many baked goodies.

Liberty Lake Farmers’ Market manager Angela Pizelo shared her recipe for her favorite egg salad sandwich from the 101 Cookbooks Web site.

“Delicious,” she says.

The Liberty Lake Farmers Market is held from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Saturdays in the Liberty Square parking lot, 1421 N. Meadowwood Lane.

The second recipe is from my personal collection. It’s a green chili baked eggs casserole that my sister-in-law served during our last visit to see her in Tempe, Ariz. Serve it with corn tortillas, salsa, guacamole and sour cream for a hearty weekend breakfast.

Egg Salad Sandwiches

101 Cookbooks author Heidi Swanson writes, “I’ve realized that 90 percent of the challenge here is properly boiling the egg. You need to boil it so the center sets yet stays moist. You also need to avoid the green/grey ring thing that surrounds the yolk in many hard boiled eggs. I use the same technique here that I learned camping with a hardcore egg enthusiast. It has worked for me flawlessly ever since. The key is to avoid over cooking, and to dunk the eggs in a bowl of icy water to stop the cooking after you remove them from the hot water. I always use good quality eggs – but something to keep in mind, the fresher they are, the harder they are to peel after boiling.”

6 large eggs

1 to 2 tablespoons mayonnaise

Salt and pepper

A tiny squeeze of lemon juice

2 stalks celery, washed and chopped

1/2 bunch chives, chopped

2 small handfuls of lettuce

8 slices of whole-grain bread, toasted

Place the eggs in a pot and cover with cold water by a 1/2 inch or so. Bring to a gentle boil. Now turn off the heat, cover, and let sit for exactly seven minutes. Have a big bowl of ice water ready and when the eggs are done cooking place them in the ice bath for three minutes or so – long enough to stop the cooking. Crack and peel each egg, place in a medium mixing bowl. Add the mayonnaise, a couple generous pinches of salt and pepper, now mash with a fork. Don’t overdo it. You want the egg mixture to have some texture. If you need to add a bit more mayo to moisten up the mixture, stir in a little at a time.

Stir in the celery and chives. Taste, and adjust the seasoning – adding more salt and pepper if needed.

To assemble each egg salad sandwich: place a bit of lettuce on a piece of toast, top with the egg salad mixture, and finish by creating a sandwich with a second piece of toast.

Yield: 4 sandwiches

Approximate nutrition per serving: 305 calories, 15 grams fat (4 grams saturated, 45 percent fat calories), 15 grams protein, 28 grams carbohydrate, 323 milligrams cholesterol, 4 grams dietary fiber, 590 milligrams sodium.

Green Chili Baked Eggs

There are hundreds of variations on this casserole. Spice it up with hotter chilies if you prefer. The original recipe calls for 4 cups grated cheese and 1/2 cup butter, but I think that’s too much. Add more if you like.

Serve it with corn tortillas, salsa, sour cream and guacamole.

10 eggs

1/2 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

2 (4-ounce cans) chopped green chilies

1 pint cottage cheese

2 cups grated cheddar or Monterey jack cheese, or a mixture of both

1/4 cup butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9-by-13-inch glass baking dish.

In a large mixing bowl, beat the eggs, flour, baking power and salt. Stir in the remaining ingredients and pour into prepared pan.

Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 350 degrees and continue baking for 20 minutes or until the center is set.

Yield: 10-12 servings

Approximate nutrition per serving: 225 calories, 15 grams fat (8 grams saturated, 60 percent fat calories), 16 grams protein, 7 grams carbohydrate, 208 milligrams cholesterol, less than 1 gram dietary fiber, 442 milligrams sodium.

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