Eggs Benedict con Queso

by Shawnda on February 26, 2013

in Breakfast,Cinco de Mayo,Eggs Benedict,Mexican & TexMex,Mother's Day,Take-out Fake-out

Eggs Benedict con Queso

Hi, my name is–

Queso! QUESO!! KAY-SOOOO!!!!

That’s kind of what happens when we go to Austin. We stop by the original Kerbey Lane Cafe at least once… a day. And before the server can even get his or her name out, my husband is already reaching for his tranquilizer gun.

So maybe it’s not that bad, but I am a certifiable chile con queso junkie. And I’ve never really paid much attention to their menu. (Seriously, they have a menu! Who knew?)

Eggs Benedict con Queso

But a reader recently brought to my attention a dish from that alleged menu: “Eggs Francisco.” Eggs Francisco is an English muffin topped with scrambled eggs, tomatoes, bacon and a scoop of Kerbey queso.

That? That sounds like my kind of breakfast. (Or breakfast for dinner, as it turned out.)

We took a slightly different approach to Eggs Francisco, instead merging Eggs Benedict with a few TexMex and breakfast favorites to create a dish totally worthy of a fancy & pricey brunch: bacon, avocado, pico de gallo, and a generous spoonful of queso.

Eggs Benedict con queso y avocado y bacon y pico de gallo. But you can call ‘em Eggs Benedict con Queso.

Eggs Benedict con Queso

And then you can call it the best thing to happen to Eggs Benedict since butter and homemade English muffins.

I already had English muffins in the freezer and leftover pico and queso in the fridge from the night before, so I really only had to cook the bacon, poach the eggs, and toast the muffins. It took no time at all for it all to come together!

Eggs Benedict con Queso

Eggs Benedict, with a TexMex twist.


  • For the pico de gallo:
  • 2 roma tomatoes, seeded and chopped
  • 1/3 cup chopped red onion
  • 1 jalapeno, seeded and chopped
  • Handful of cilantro, chopped
  • Juice of half a lime
  • Salt
  • For each serving:
  • 1 toasted English muffin half
  • Sliced avocado
  • 1 slice of cooked bacon
  • 1 poached or fried egg
  • 1 scoop of warmed chile con queso (this is my favorite recipe)


  1. Stir the ingredients for the pico de gallo together in a small bowl and set aside.
  2. Build your Eggs Benedict con queso from the bottom-up: english muffin half, avocado, bacon (breaking the pieces as necessary to fit), egg, queso, and a generous scoop of pico de gallo.


Yields: Servings vary

Source: Confections of a Foodie Bride, Inspired by Kerbey Lane Cafe

Estimated time: 30 minutes



DIY: English Muffins

by Shawnda on February 20, 2013

in Bread,Breakfast,DIY

Homemade English Muffins

“Dough! Are you making dough? I can have some dough?”

The clank of the mixer bowl snapping onto mixer sends The Little running to the kitchen from anywhere inside our fence line. She has always had super Spidey hearing. When she was a newborn, the sound of milk pouring over my cereal downstairs in the kitchen would be enough to wake her from a nap upstairs. Every single time.

Unless we’re talking about cracking eggs or making pizza/bread dough, she’s not overly interested in helping in the kitchen. And this is what it usually looks like when I ask “Do you want to help Mommy measure the flour/cut cookies/do anything else besides eat raw bread dough or crack a couple of eggs?”

do not pin

Lately, she’d rather paint or draw. Or wear a princess fairy dress.

It’s like we’re barely related some days :)

But the promise of a pinch or two of bread dough can cut a tantrum short and get my scattered toy mess of a living room picked up in no time. So we’re making a lot of bread lately.


English muffins are one of those bread things that are plenty easy enough to drop into your cart at the store but are so much more delicious when made at home, you just need to find a couple of hours on a weekend to let the dough rise and then some hands-on shaping and cooking time.

Just be warned – after eating Eggs Benedict or a breakfast sandwich on homemade English muffins, the store-bought variety will never even come close to living up to them. Even when drowned in all that magical Hollandaise sauce.

Need help deciding what to do with all those English muffins? We clearly vote for Eggs Benedict:

Eggs Oscar Eggs Trivette Eggs Benedict Burger King Crab Eggs Benedict Eggs Benedict Chipotle Hollandaise Sauce Buttermilk pancakes Eggs Spin-edict

Or this beauty that’s coming soon to a blog near you:

Homemade English Muffins

English muffins couldn't be easier to make and taste so much better than their store-bought counterpart.


  • 1 3/4 cups lukewarm milk
  • 2 1/4 tsp (1 pkg) yeast
  • 3 Tbsp butter, softened
  • 1 1/4 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • Oil for bowl and hands
  • Cornmeal for pans


  1. Place milk in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and sprinkle yeast over top.
  2. Let sit for 10 minutes and then add the butter, salt, sugar, egg, and flour.
  3. Mix on low until the flour is incorporated and then switch to medium and beat for 5 minutes - dough will be very soft and sticky.
  4. Scrape dough out into an oiled bowl and cover, letting rise for ~2 hours.
  5. Keeping your hands well oiled to prevent the dough from sticking, pinch golf ball sized pieces of dough off (2 oz, if you have a kitchen scale), form a ball, and place on a griddle pan that is generously dusted with cornmeal.
  6. Lightly press down on the balls once on the pan (I could fit 8-10 on my griddle and then I put the remainder on a baking sheet to cook in two batches).
  7. Let rest for 20 minutes.
  8. Turn burner or grill to medium low and cook until golden brown, ~12 minutes on each side. (If they brown too quickly, reduce the heat.)
  9. Carefully transfer the second batch to the griddle so as not to deflate them and cook until done.
  10. Let cool completely on a rack before splitting open with a fork.
  11. Muffins will keep fresh on the counter a few days and freeze well.


Yields: 16 muffins

Slightly adapted from King Arthur Flour

Estimated time: 3 hours



Chocolate Chunk Bagels

by Shawnda on January 13, 2013

in Bread,Breakfast,Chocolate

Chocolate Chunk (Chip) Bagels

A few years ago, one of my New Year’s resolutions was to start making most of our own bread. With a little bit of scheduling and some room in the freezer, I could bake up sandwich bread, burger buns, english muffins, and bagels without having to buy very much.

Aside from burger buns, my favorite bread-thing to make is bagels. Partly because 1 batch will allow us to share a bagel for breakfast for nearly 2 weeks. And partly because the bagels from the nearby bakery place that we used to adore have really gone downhill over the last couple of years. Shelling out $12 for a disappointing breakfast for 2 isn’t the ideal start to a weekend.

Chocolate Chunk Bagels

This batch, we flavored the dough with some vanilla and added chopped semisweet chocolate. The dough isn’t overly sweet so you feel like you’re eating dessert for breakfast but there is chocolate. So you’re still kinda eating dessert for breakfast.

Chocolate Chunk Bagels

An overnight rest yields chewy, flavorful bagels studded with your favorite chocolate.


  • For the sponge:
  • 1 tsp sugar
  • 2 1/2 cups warm water (divided)
  • 1 tsp active dry yeast
  • 4 cups all-purpose flour
  • For the dough
  • 1/2 tsp dry active yeast
  • 2 1/2 - 3 cups flour
  • 2 3/4 tsp salt
  • 2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • 2 cups semisweet chocolate chunks
  • To finish:
  • 1 Tbsp baking soda
  • Cornmeal for dusting pan


  1. To make the sponge, dissolve sugar into 1/2 cup warm water in the bowl of your stand mixer. Sprinkle yeast over top and let proof for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the remaining water and flour and mix on low with the paddle until sponge is smooth and the consistency of pancake batter.
  3. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let sit until doubled, approximately 2 hours. (The sponge will be foamy and bubbly and will collapse when the bowl is tapped on the countertop).
  4. To make the dough, fit the mixer with the dough hook. Add the additional yeast to the sponge and mix on low until combined.
  5. Add 2 cups flour, all of the salt, sugar, vanilla, and chocolate, mixing on low until the ingredients form a ball, adding additional flour 1/4 cup at a time to stiffen the dough.
  6. Knead the dough for 6 minutes. It will be firm but still pliable and smooth and should clean the sides of the mixer bowl. The kneaded dough should feels satiny and pliable but not be tacky.
  7. Form the bagels: Divide the dough into 4 oz pieces and shape into rolls. Cover the rolls with a damp towel and let sit for 20 minutes.
  8. Line two baking sheets with parchment. Shape the bagels by pushing a hole through the center of each roll and working the dough around your thumb, stretching out the hole to ~2.5 inches in diameter.
  9. Place bagels 2 inches apart on the pan. Cover with a damp towel and let sit for 20 minutes.
  10. Fill a small bowl with room-temp water. Drop one bagel into the water. If the bagel floats within 10 seconds, remove the bagel, pat it dry, return it to the pan, and place the pans in the refrigerator overnight covered loosely with plastic wrap. If the bagel does not float, pat it dry, return it to the pan, and test again in 10-20 minutes.
  11. Baking the bagels: Preheat the oven to 500 with the two racks set in the middle of the oven. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the baking soda. Boil the bagels in batches 1-2 minutes on each side (for chewy bagels, go 2 minutes). Remove with a slotted spoon or spatula.
  12. Sprinkle the same parchment-lined baking sheets with cornmeal. Transfer the pans to the oven. Bake for 5 minutes and then swap the pans in the oven. Lower the oven setting to 450 and continue baking for about 5 minutes, or until the bagels are golden brown.
  13. Remove from the oven and let the bagels cool on a rack for 15 minutes or longer before serving.
  14. To freeze: I slice the completely cooled bagels almost all the way through, enough that they flip open all the way but still are just barely attached so tops and bottoms stay together. A square of wax paper in the middle keeps them from freezing shut. I layer them in a gallon freezer bag and put in the freezer. To reheat, I place the frozen bagel halves in the oven when I turn on the broiler to toast. They thaw, heat, and toast perfectly


Yields: ~12 bagels

Adapted from The Bread Baker's Apprentice

Estimated time: 16 hours 30 minutes