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Is it incredible? Why, yes it is! Is it oh-so-edible? Absolutely! What is this fabulous, flexible, phenomenal food? It's none other than the egg. It can be used for breakfast, lunch, or dinner and is included in just about everything from cakes to quiche. Its versitility is its virtue, making the egg a staple for any cook.

The egg is the poor person's best friend. Eggs are a great source of protien, making an excellent meat substitute and they're cheap, with a whole dozen of them sell for under two dollars. In my area, you can buy a standard carton for roughly $1.25 at the supermarket. This carton will usually last me about a week, depending on what I'm making with it.

I know some of you haven't had a whole lot of cooking experience, so I'll start off with the basics(although veteran cooks may want to give the following paragraphs a read anyway in case you find some of my tips and tricks helpful). Hard boiling, frying, and scrambling are the three simplest ways to cook an egg. To hard boil an egg, simply place the egg in a pot and fill it with water so that the egg is completely submerged. Cover the pot and bring water to a boil. Once it reaches boiling, turn the burner off and leave the egg in the pot, covered, for 20 minutes. Remove the egg with care, run it under cold water to loosen the shell, and peel the shell away to serve.

To fry an egg, melt a spoonful of butter or bacon grease in a frying pan (or spray with cooking spray). Break the egg into the pan and fry to your favorite degree of doneness. For sunny side up, do not flip the egg. For over-hard eggs, break the yolk with the end of the spatula.

Scrambled eggs are perhaps the most useful to me, as one can add any number of things in with them to put a new spin on an old favorite. I've used anything from more traditional ingredients like bacon, cheese, onion, and pepper to frozen peas, spinach, garlic, sauted potato shreds, rice, and green beans; anything to make the meal more complete and give extra nutrients. A variety of spices can also be used to further enhance the dish. I'm in the process of developing a sweeter variation. Feel free to experiment. What follows is the recipe for one of my most recent creations that can be varied in any number of ways. This recipe was designed to feed just me, as I live alone. It can easily be adjusted to feed more people or make leftovers for later.

3 eggs
Roughly 1 tsp milk or plain yogurt
1 onion
roughly 1/2 cup frozen peas
1/2 cup diced ham or one slice of chopped, cooked bacon
a few shakes of seasoned salt
a dash of black pepper
as much cheese as desired (I use about 1/4 cup, but I'm a little crazy about cheese)

Grease the fry pan in your favorite manner (be it bacon grease, butter, or spray). Saute the onion, ham, and peas together until the onions are translucent and the peas are thawed. Together in a bowl, beat the eggs, milk, seasoned salt, and pepper. Shred the cheese into the egg mixture and stir in the shredded cheese. Pour the egg mixture over the onions, ham, and peas. Stir until the ingredients are evenly distributed. Proceed to scramble until the eggs are your preferred consistancy. NOTE: It is recommended that any ingredients added to the eggs, cheese aside, are sauted first. Potatoes should be cooked.

There are an overwhelmingly vast number of recipes out there that vary in their level of complication. Omelettes, quiches, and souffles are among my favorite, more cost effective ones, but there are countless others. A good search on the internet will turn up a fair few. Best of luck and please ask any questions that come to mind.



Lentils and Rice

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