Marge Perry, Newsday's weekly 3 Simple columnist, also writes, broadcasts, teaches and speaks about cooking, food and nutrition.
TIP These dishes may be prepared the night before and cooked before serving.
BAKED EGGS WITH SPINACH, BACON AND POTATOES
4 strips center-cut bacon
2 medium red potatoes, (8 ounces total), cut into 1/4-inch dice
4 cups baby spinach
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
4 tablespoons grated Parmesan cheese
8 large eggs
1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Coat the inside of 4 (6-ounce) ramekins with cooking spray.
2. Cook the bacon in a large, nonstick skillet over medium high. Transfer to a plate lined with paper towel; crumble bacon when cool.
3. Add the potatoes to the skillet and cook, stirring occasionally, until well browned and tender, 12 to 14 minutes. Add the spinach and nutmeg, and cook, tossing, until just wilted, 2 minutes. Combine vegetables with bacon and spoon the mixture into the ramekins. Add 1 tablespoon of cheese to each.
4. Beat eggs with fork until fairly smooth and pour into the ramekins. Place on a tray and bake about 20 minutes, until the eggs are set -- a toothpick inserted in the center will come out clean. Serve immediately. Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving 239 calories, 18 g protein, 13 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 13 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 402 mg sodium
ASPARAGUS AND GRUYERE STRATA
1 pound asparagus, trimmed
1 tablespoon canola oil
6 large eggs
3 1/2 cups nonfat milk
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon
12 ounces sliced sourdough bread
1 1/2 cups grated Gruyere
1. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Coat a baking sheet pan and a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray.
2. Toss asparagus with oil, place in a single layer on sheet pan, roast until bright green and crisp-tender, about 12 minutes. Remove and cut into 1-inch pieces.
3. Whisk together eggs, milk, salt and tarragon. Place half the bread in a single layer in the bottom of the baking dish. Top with half the asparagus and half the cheese. Repeat the layers; pour the egg mixture over the top. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight.
4. Bake until the strata is slightly puffed and golden, and a toothpick inserted in the center is no longer wet; about 45 minutes. Makes 8 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving 313 calories, 19 g protein, 29 g carbohydrates, 2 g fiber, 13 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 413 mg sodium
SALMON AND ASPARAGUS FRITTATA
6 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1 tablespoon olive oil
11/2 cups chopped onion
8 ounces asparagus, trimmed and cut into 3/4-inch pieces
8 ounces skinless salmon, cut into 1-inch chunks
3 plum tomatoes, chopped
1. Preheat the broiler.
2. Combine eggs, salt and pepper in a bowl.
3. Heat oil in a 10-inch nonstick skillet over medium high. Add onions and cook, stirring occasionally, until softened, about 3 minutes. Add asparagus and cook until bright green and crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Add salmon and cook until opaque, 2 to 3 minutes. Stir in the tomatoes and reduce heat to low. Pour egg mixture into skillet and cook 6 to 7 minutes, until the egg begins to set, but is still wet on top.
4. Transfer skillet to the broiler and brown frittata for 2 to 3 minutes. Slide frittata onto a plate, cut into 4 wedges and serve. Makes 4 servings.
Nutritional analysis for each serving 300 calories, 23 g protein, 10 g carbohydrates, 3 g fiber, 18 g fat, 5 g saturated fat, 435 mg sodium