I almost feel like I should post this under an assumed name, what with all my perky, healthy, Look! We Grow Vegetables! posts lately.
It’s…I don’t even know what to call it, other than one of the yummiest breakfasts I’ve ever had.
It’s a fried egg on top of warmed goat milk mozzarella on top of arugula on top of a piece of leftover pizza dough that was fried in bacon fat.
Yes. Bacon fat.
And yes. It was that good.
Here’s how it happened…
First, I had this. It’s some leftover pizza dough from a couple of nights ago.
Oh, but wait, before there was that, there was this:
This is a BAT – Bacon, Arugula and Tomato sandwich, made with our first Brandywine of the season:
(That’s the Brandywine on the left. The one on the right is a San Marzano.)
Actually, even before the sandwich, there was the bacon, which I’d made to go with some french toast an even more previous morning.
I didn’t take pictures, but I did save all the bacon fat.
Okay, moving forward once again…
Bacon fat accounted for.
And the pizza dough…I made a double batch of this pizza dough the other night, and with that I made a couple of different kinds of pizzas that I’m not going to talk about right now because I’ve got enough simultaneous tangents going on as it is.
But anyway, I had extra dough, so I put that in the fridge for another time.
Bacon fat + pizza dough accounted for.
The arugula is growing in the garden. I love arugula. Love the slightly peppery flavor. My favorite green. Love arugula.
So. Bacon fat + pizza dough + arugula.
Now…(we’re going back in time a bit. Are you feeling seasick from all this motion? I am.)…I’d made a batch of 30-minute mozzarella using goat’s milk, just to see how it would turn out. That, too will be another post. But here’s a peek at it:
I used some of that on some of the pizza.
And I still had some left over.
Bacon fat + pizza dough + arugula + goat’s milk mozzarella… what’s left? Oh – an egg. We always have eggs on hand.
Now…first, I cooked Bill’s breakfast – a couple of fried eggs. Only this time, probably just because the jar of it was sitting there on the stove, I used bacon fat instead of butter in the pan.
The kids had breakfast, too…couple of bowls of cereal.
I’d taken the bowl of pizza dough out of the fridge to warm up – I figured I’d make a loaf of bread with it.
But then…there was that pan. With a little bacon fat left in it.
I swear the handle of the pan beckoned to me.
“Use the dough, Jayne!” it whispered. “Use the dough!”
So I tore off a little bit of dough, flattened it a bit, and placed it in the hot fat.
When the bottom was gorgeously golden brown, and the edges of the dough were heated through (the look of it changes from a wet, soft dough look to a drier, firmer look) I flipped it over and golden-browned it on the other side.
Then I cut it into four pieces, and we (me and the kids) each tried it.
Our eyes widened, and we looked at each other with joyous amazement.
"Can you make some more?” Alex asked.
But I was already breaking off a larger piece of dough…
Alex volunteered to take pictures, so the one above and the following feature my son behind the camera.
Yes, I’m quite dainty when I cook.
Not sure where I suddenly disappeared to in this one.
Maybe I was getting a plate.
We tried this bacon-blessed pizza dough in a variety of ways…plain (very yummy)…with peanut butter…with a sprinkling of sugar (very much like a doughboy, only bacony-er)…and – Alex’s breakfast of choice – with peanut butter, blueberry jam, and just a light sprinkling of sugar around the edge.
Julia just wanted one plain – she’d already filled up on cereal for the most part, but she didn’t want to be left out.
And then…it was my turn.
I was reminded of an appetizer we had a couple of times at our once-upon-a-time favorite Italian restaurant, Nona Cherubina. Unfortunately the owners (Stephania and Luigi), moved to Spain a number of years ago, and subsequent owners have attempted to make a go of things – with different names – but Bill and I haven’t been to any of them.
We just can’t.
But the appetizer – it was a piece of fried dough with salad greens and perhaps some cheese on top. The warmth of the bread would slightly wilt the greens…the bread would soak up the light dressing…it was heavenly, like so many dishes on their menu.
Anyway, that’s what I was thinking about when I came up with this dish. I wanted something similar, but more breakfasty.
First – I fried up a piece of dough.
Then I went out to the garden, picked a bunch of arugula, and arranged the greens artfully (or so I tell myself) on top of the bread. (I don’t want to call it bread…it’s way beyond bread.)
I was going to just go ahead and top this with a fried egg…but it needed something more.
AHA! I still had a bit of that goat milk mozzarella in the fridge! Perfect!
I warmed that up in the microwave while my egg was cooking.
The cheese got nice and soft and stringy.
And – ta-da! – the egg. Not my most photogenic fried egg, but I really didn’t care any more. I was hungry.
I sprinkled some kosher salt and ground black pepper over the top, took a couple of pictures, and dug in.
Ohhhh, this was perfect.
The ever-so-slightly crisp golden exterior of the fried dough…the soft interior…the peppery arugula…the soft, earthy goats milk mozzarella, and the voluptuous egg yolk…sigh.
It was so good I took a forkful over to Bill, who was doing a bit of outdoor carpentry for our neighbor, and made him try it. IMMEDIATELY.
He groaned in a rather good-thing-the-children-aren’t-around sort of way and said it was incredibly amazing.
I went back to our house and ate the rest.
I’ll stop now.
I don’t want to make you cry.