Breakfast in a Cup!
By Dennis Linden
Connie Wheeler, in Melissa’s Retail Sales Department, gives us a tasty and very attractive breakfast or brunch item that combines three of the company’s best sellers in a one tasty cup! While Connie’s crepe cups look impressive, the dish is quite fun, easy and actually takes a lot less prep time to make than they look.
“This is one of my favorite breakfast dishes because my kids can make their own crepe by adding the ingredients they like,” Connie explained. “When we take them out of the oven, each look so good that we often pass them around the table so everyone gets to taste them all!”
Part of that quick and easy preparation comes from Connie’s use of several of the company’s time-saving products in her ingredient list. Melissa’s Crepes are ready to use right out of the package, which eliminates the mixing of a batter as well as the somewhat delicate griddle work required to get a home-made crepe just the right thinness.
Connie also saves time, as well as a lot of trimming waste, by using Melissa’s Cleaned and Sliced Leeks. This versatile veggie in the onion family, known best as a soup ingredient, has a subtle flavor of onion-garlic-shallot. The problem with store-bought leeks are that they come in only XL size, requiring lots of trimming and cleaning to get to the “good parts”. While the heavy leaves can be used in soup, the most tender and edible part of this plant is the white and light green end of the stalk, which has been buried under the soil during cultivation. So those tender parts of the leek can be quite gritty with the field soil that must be cleaned thoroughly. Melissa’s Cleaned & Sliced Leeks require nothing more than opening the package!
Hollandaise sauce entails a bit of culinary experience and practice to prepare successfully. It is an emulsion sauce that demands constant whisking during preparation so that the components do not separate. Melissa’s packaged Hollandaise sauce provides even the novice cook with the same buttery rich, mild-lemon flavor of this delicate sauce without the need of a culinary diploma! Again, just a quick warm it up before slathering the sauce generously on Connie’s cups. Please note that for photographic presentation, the Hollandaise sauce pictured in this feature had to be used sparingly; the reader will not be bound by such a limitation – slather away!
The forming of the crepe cups themselves did take me a bit of practice. I got the best results by using a slightly greased, tall drinking glass that was almost the same size as the muffin tray cup mold; the bottom of the glass was used to tap down and shape the crepe into each mold. I found Melissa’s crepes to be quite pliable, so try to fold in a double layer of crepe on the bottom of each cup for extra support. Also, since the entire crepe will not fit down into the mold evenly, ribbon the excess crepe into attractive, high edges. Connie cautions, however, to not make those edges too high or thin as they will tend to burn before her delicious egg mixture has had a chance to cook through. And one wants as much of that tasty filling as possible in those cups, though the mixture will rise a bit during the bake. Fresh asparagus, mushrooms and crispy bacon, all flavored with a hint of Worcestershire sauce and topped with cheddar cheese. What a great way to start the day!
Connie Wheeler has been with Melissa’s for 13 years. She is member of our sales team that services several retail divisions of The Kroger Company. Connie focuses on getting new items into Kroger’s data base system and keeping the company’s price list updated. To help with sales and to get out from behind her sales desk, Connie also enjoys spending the occasional weekend at one of Melissa’s many local retail accounts in the Southern California area demonstrating new products to consumers.
“I also love to cook and taught my kids since they were young how to bake from scratch. Now they make all the cookies, breads and pastries for the holidays. I especially enjoy experimenting with recipes by changing out ingredients of my own favorite dishes. On weekends I try to prepare dishes ahead of time, then I freeze them for use during the work week. Making sauces from scratch is a big passion for me – no canned sauces in my kitchen!”
Connie has two boys and two girls ranging in ages from 23 to 15 and 1 grandson who is 3! As a working mother, Connie has a full schedule outside of the office but does manage to find moments of down time. To relax, Connie says she enjoys watching movies, listening to music and gardening in her yard. And I would add making delicious breakfast cups to her talents – enjoy!
Breakfast Crepe Cups
Makes six cups
From Melissa’s pantry…
1 package of Melissa’s Crepes
4 ounces Melissa’s Cleaned & Sliced Leeks, chopped
4 Melissa’s Hollandaise Sauce Packs (garnish)
Fresh from the field…
1 cup Fresh Asparagus, sliced into ½” pieces
4 ounces Fresh Crimini Mushrooms, sliced
1 Tablespoon Cooking Oil
1 cup Milk
1 teaspoon Worcestershire Sauce
½ cup Cooked Bacon, chopped (Option: Diced Ham)
½ cup Cheddar Cheese, grated
Heat oil in skillet. Sauté asparagus, mushrooms, onions, salt, and pepper. Set aside to cool.
In a mixing bowl, beat eggs, then blend in the milk and Worcestershire thoroughly.
The add the bacon bits and asparagus mixture to the bowl.
Create cups by shaping a crepe into a greased muffin or cupcake mold.
Using a small ladle, pour mixture into each prepared crepe cup, filling each a little more than halfway, then top each with a sprinkle of cheese.
Preheat oven to 325° and cook for 10-15 minutes. They are done when the eggs rise a bit in the crepe cup and the crepe edge have turned a golden brown.
Serve immediately, smothered in Melissa's Hollandaise sauce, warmed.
Chef’s note: Connie also suggests that this recipe can be changed to add red, yellow, or green bell peppers, spinach, jalapenos, or tomatoes.