Cheap Eats at Bloglander

Your guide to eating cheap including tips, recipes and techniques

Archives for Breakfast

[ Currently Eating: Grilled Cheese Sandwich ]

This Is Grilled Cheese - Cheap Eats at Bloglander

I had a friend in college who once subsisted through all his finals on nothing but grilled cheese sandwiches.

Regrettably, this is not his story. =)

Nevertheless – I have eaten many a grilled cheese in my day. It’s cheap and fast, takes no special skill. You can dress it up any way you like. A “recipe” isn’t really needed – but people seem to love it when I attempt to calculate the price of single slice of cheese and a tablespoon of butter. I haven’t the heart to tell them I’m making it up usually. Man, I’m not going back and looking at grocery receipts and dividing each item on the calculator!

Grilled Cheese

2 Slices Bread — $0.15
1 Slice American Cheese (or other meltable) — $0.20
1 Tbsp Butter or Margarine — $0.10

Total: $0.45

Use a pan (or pancake griddle) that will fit the 2 slices bread. Put on low to med heat. You want to have enough butter to coat the bottom, so the entire bread surface gets crisped. When the butter is melted, put the bread in the pan. Put the cheese down on one slice of bread. Some people like to wait until the bread is cooked, flipping it once, and then putting down the cheese.

Either way, keep checking the bottom of the bread with a spatula so it doesn’t completely burn. When cheese is sufficiently melted, and bread sufficiently toasted flip the piece of bread w/out the cheese onto the other one. Take it out of pan, cut it if desired, and enjoy.

This Is Grilled Cheese - Cheap Eats at Bloglander

I’m a huge fan of grilled cheese done in this manner, but you can make it even simpler by just cooking it in the toaster. Or, don’t use butter in the pan. I tend to go with the butter if possible. It’s not as good for you, but I remember my mom making them this way on the stove.

Continue reading “Grilled Cheese Sandwich” …

[ Currently Eating: Peanut Butter on Toast ]

Omelette - Cheap Eats at Bloglander

I am quite possibly the world’s worst omelette maker.

That distinction is justified, not for the sheer multitudes of rubbery or runny egg disasters that I seem to turn out, but for my refusal to try and learn the correct way to make an omelette. No matter how many promising cooking shows or magazines with “foolproof” tips I come across, I always turn a blind eye to improving my skills. I’m a bad egg, haha.

This is partly because there seem to be about a billion different “EggMasters” who claim they have reached the pinnacle of Omelette Nirvana. Which path is the right one? But it’s mostly because I just like to fool around with my eggs. Oh no, I don’t juggle them in the kitchen like some cooks. Everytime I crack an egg to try once again to make an omelette, I’m thinking “What shall we do this time”: Cook over super high flame for only a few seconds? Cover and cook on low for 3 minutes? Add water or salt to the eggs? Mix in chopped parsley to get green eggs? Butter, olive oil, non-stick pan or cast iron?

With eggs, I like to gamble. It’s all too eggciting to get wrapped up in technique.

Actually, after reading a magazine article about how difficult it was to create an absolutely perfect omelette (the writer actually went to a class taught by a froufrou French instructor) I didn’t feel as bad. Still, I don’t think I’ve ever made two omelettes in a row that turned out even remotely the same. Part of it is laziness to learn, but it’s also the fact that nearly any egg disaster I make has been edible. You can overcook it and it still tastes fine – slather with salsa, ketchup or tabasco and it becomes breakfast. So there’s not much motivation to refine the technique.

Continue reading “How To Make An Omelette” …

5/2/07 | Hash Browns

[ Currently Eating: Leftover Chicken ]

Hash Browns - on Cheap Eats at Bloglander

More potato stuff – I just can’t seem to get away from it. Actually, I almost didn’t post this one because I thought I had already done a post on Hash Browns but it turns out that one was on Home Fries.

I dunno if a lot of people go through the trouble to try make hash browns at home, but I’ve tried several times with varying degrees of success. I guess you could always head over to IHOP or some similar breakfast place to get them. But I recently got a pretty cool flat cast iron reversible grill pan as a gift – the kind that goes over two burners on the stove. So I decided to try make some hash browns again.

Hash Browns are pretty cool to make, because the list of ingredients is so short. Cooking them correctly isn’t as easy… I’m still trying to figure out the best method, but below is a general idea of what I usually do.

Hash Browns

1 large potato — $0.40
1-2 tbsp butter (from $1.00 4 oz stick) — $0.13
(or 1-2 tbsp of oil or cooking spray)
salt, pepper — negligible

Total: $0.53

Russets are probably easiest and most people have ‘em around. I don’t pre-cook the potatoes for hash browns because it’s thin enough, though for thicker home fries you might want to try that.

You can use either butter, oil, or cooking spray… but you should probably use at least something to prevent sticking and help browning. On my cast iron flat grill I’ve gotten away with using very little oil or cooking spray. If you’re using a pan, try using a non-stick surface one first… it’ll allow you to use less oil. Butter really makes the potatoes brown nicely, however, so you might want to experiment.

Peel and wash the potato(es). Heat up the pan/griddle and oil/butter it. Meanwhile, grate the potato finely. What I like to do is put the grated potato in a paper towel or cheesecloth and squeeze the heck out of it. A considerable amount of water will drain out.

Scatter the potatoes on the grill and cook until brown on one side. Try and always keep the potatoes spread thinly instead of clumped up together. Flip it with a spatula and cook until desired doneness is achieved. Salt and pepper to taste.

Continue reading “Hash Browns” …

8/22/06 | Ghetto McMuffins

[ Currently Eating: Some Kind Of Cereal ]

Egg Mcmuffins at HomeAfter the immensely popular Ghetto Pizza post, I decided to take another trip down ghetto memory lane. Again, I don’t mean ghetto in any derogatory way… like, if you live in or near a sketchy neighborhood I’m not saying this is the only type of food you would eat. In fact, you probably eat much better than me…

Anyhow, welcome to Ghetto McMuffins 101. The idea is to mimic all of those breakfast sandwiches that cost an arm and a leg. Hey, there’s no reason to make your wallet feel so sad in the morning! Make one at home. It takes about 5-10 minutes.

I mentioned latch-key kid food before, and this could also fall into that category. However, it’s a bit more “advanced” since I find it difficult to make egg scrambles in the microwave or toaster (it can be done, however). You’ve gotta use the stove; but it’s still pretty fast:

Ghetto McMuffins

1 english muffin — $0.25
1-2 eggs — $0.15
1/2 – 1 hotdog — $0.12
1 slice cheese, optional — $0.10
pepper, optional

Total: $0.62

Cut the english muffin in half and put it in the toaster set for extra crispy. Meanwhile, beat the egg(s) lightly in a small bowl. Throw in pepper if you like. Cut up the hotdog into chunks. Get a medium fire under a small (8-9 inch is fine) non stick omelette pan going. At some point you might want to put a bit of oil in the pan but I find I can avoid it for non-stick.

Cook the hot dogs until slightly browned. Distribute them across the bottom of the pan and pour in the egg(s). Lower the fire. Stir a bit with a spatula. Let it set up a bit, a few minutes. You can cover it to speed it along.

When the top is nearly cooked, get a rubber spatula and cut the scramble down the middle. Here, you can insert a slice of cheese or whatever you want on each semi-circle. Fold the egg semi-circle over so it’s a quarter-circle.

Put each quarter-circle on a toasted english muffin half. This makes 2 open face McMuffins, or close it up for a gigantic McMuffin.

Continue reading “Ghetto McMuffins” …

[ Currently Eating: Lots of Orange Juice ]

Home Fries Potatoes

I’m probably going to start writing shorter and less text intensive posts, but hopefully more of them. I got sick this past week so I wasn’t able to post more than the one on Easter. The arm is much better but I’m not sure it’s not because I’ve been distracted by this cold virus.

But anyhow, I’d like to talk about one of my favorite breakfast foods to make: Home Fried Potatoes, which are more often called simply “Home Fries“. I’m just a potato type of guy: whole baked, mashed, french fried, scalloped, stuffed, croquette, etc. it doesn’t matter. The only thing I DON’T like is the sweet variety… ughs.

Potatoes are also darn cheap eats. I don’t know if you’d want to eat ONLY potatoes though…

You see these home fries in most breakfast joints as a side item that comes with the main omlette or whatever. They come in all sorts of shapes and flavors. When making them at home I like cutting them as small squares, because it tends to cook up more evenly.

Continue reading “Home Fried Potatoes” …



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