The Pig and Fig

We are big breakfast for dinner fans in the Kiwi and Peach house. It’s simple, straightforward, and usually pretty quick.

When I was in Croatia this spring, I picked up a teeny tiny jar of delicious homemade fig jam. I was kind of saving it to use on something special when I saw this delicious looking sandwich floating around on Pinterest. This was it. What more could you want? There’s fig, there’s creamy brie, and most importantly, there’s pig.

Mmm. Bacon.

Kiwi+Peach: Bacon, Brie, and Fig Breakfast Sandwich

Pig and Fig Breakfast Sandwich

{adapted for two from Sweet Sugarbean}

4 slices of bacon
2-3 ounces brie
4 slices of sourdough bread
2 Tbsp fig jam
1 Tbsp butter

Start heating a pan on medium high heat and lay the bacon in the pan.

While the bacon is cooking, cut the rind off of the brie and build your sandwich. Spread the jam on each piece of bread. Layer the brie and, when it’s finished, the bacon on two slices and then top with the other two.

Drop the butter into the hot pan. When it’s melted drop your sandwiches in the pan and cook until the bread is golden brown. Flip and do the same on the other side and the cheese is melted.

Enjoy by itself or with some scrambled eggs or with fresh fruit. The possibilities are endless!


Don’t forget to vote for us in The Kitchn’s Small Cool Kitchens 2013!

TheKitchn Small Cool Kitchen 2013: Lauren's Tiny Yet Airy Kitchen

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Creole Shrimp and Basil Goat Cheese Grits from Tupelo Honey Café

Thank y’all so, so much for your overwhelming support and kind words yesterday about our kitchen! Obviously a lot of cooking gets done in that kitchen, but like I said on the write up, my absolute favorite thing to cook is shrimp and grits.

On our last trip back to the States, I actually bought two 5 pound bags of grits. The Kiwi thought I was being absurd {which I kind of was}, but I was bound and determined to get back to Germany with enough grits to get me through. Unfortunately, we were over the weight limit on the bag so one of my bags of grits had to go. {It went back home with my mom. Don’t worry, no grits were harmed in the making of this error in judgement.} We have made do with just the one bag, but we do have to ration them. Its always a treat when we break out the grits.

Grits are inherently southern. Go north of the Mason-Dixon or west of the Mississippi and chances are most folks haven’t heard of them. It’s always hilarious to watch non-southerners in the breakfast line at southern hotels. They always scoop them up and let them drop with the most bewildered expression on their faces. Grits, much like polenta, is a ground corn product. It cooks up into a thick porridge-like consistency and {when paired with enough butter, cream, and cheese} are incredibly tasty. To learn more than you ever wanted to know about grits, check out the wiki.

I hesitate to say this because it may come across as bragging, but I’m something of a shrimp and grits connoisseur. By that I mean, if shrimp and grits are on the menu that’s what I’m ordering. As you can imagine, I’ve tried a lot of shrimp and grits. Every restaurant has their own take on the southern staple. Most are good, a few disgusting, but the following are truly, truly outstanding.

Grits A YaYa from Great Southern Café in Seaside, FL

Shellfish {shrimp, scallops, and lobster} over Grits from Magnolias in Charleston, SC

Shrimp {with andouille sausage} and {Vidalia onion} Grits from NONA {originally Harry Bissett’s} in Athens, GA

Shrimp and Grits from Alligator Soul in Savannah, Georgia

and my all time favorite…

Brian’s Shrimp Grits from Tupelo Honey Café in Asheville, North Carolina

Kiwi+Peach: Creole Shrimp and Basil Goat Cheese Grits from Tupelo Honey Café

Creole Shrimp and Basil Goat Cheese Grits

{adapted for two from the Tupelo Honey Cafe cookbook}

The Spice
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
2 tsp paprika
1 tsp cayenne pepper
1 tsp fresh ground black pepper

The Shrimp
1 Tbsp olive oil
1 small clove of garlic
150 grams of shrimp, shelled
1/4 cup roasted red pepper, sliced
2 Tbsp of a dry white wine
1 1/2 Tbsp butter

The Grits
1 1/2 cups water
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 cup quick cooking grits {If they’re good enough for Tupelo Honey, they’re good enough for me.}
1 Tbsp butter
1 Tbsp soy cream
3 ounces of goat cheese
about 15 fresh basil leaves

Number one key to success in making this is preparation. The actual cooking time is so fast that you really won’t have time to prep ingredients while the others are cooking {my usual m/o}. That said…

Boil your jug and start heating up a medium pot and a large pan on medium high heat.

While they are getting hot, mix up the spice and set it to the side. Shell the shrimp, peel the garlic, thinly slice the roasted red pepper, and measure your butter. Most importantly, open your bottle of wine. You do not have time for wrestling with a cork once the shrimp is on. {Ain’t nobody got time for that!} As far as wine goes, I use a Gewürztraminer because that’s what the cookbook recommends you pair the dish with, and I’m not going to buy two different bottles of wine for one dish. It works well.

To prep for the grits, cut the rind off the goat cheese and crumble it; pick your basil leaves, wash them, and slice them; and measure your pat of butter.

Kiwi+Peach: Creole Shrimp and Basil Goat Cheese Grits from Tupelo Honey Café

The next few steps are an exercise in orchestration. Ready to multi-task?

By now the pot and pan should be nice and hot. Go ahead and add the olive oil to the pan to get it hot too.

Measure your {boiled} water from the jug and add it to the pot along with the salt.

Back at the pan, add your minced garlic and shrimp and give it a stir. Let it cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Over in the pot, the water should be boiling now, so add your grits and butter. Stir constantly to avoid clumps as the grits absorb the water and the butter melts. Add the cream and reduce the heat to low.

Back at the pan, add the spice and stir well. Then add the red peppers and give it another stir. Let this cook for a couple minutes so the peppers can heat up and then add the wine.

Over in the pot, turn the heat off. Add your crumbled cheese and basil and stir until all the cheese is melted.

Back at the pan, remove the pan from the heat and add the butter. Stir until the butter melts completely.

Plate it up and enjoy!

Linking with Belinda and Bonnie for Travel Tuesday.

{This post contains an Amazon affiliate link. That means that if you head over to Amazon from the link and choose to buy the book, a tiny bit of the money you spent on the book will come back to me for the referral.} 


 •• Update ••

Apparently I should have consulted the Kiwi before I hit publish yesterday because he had a lot to add! Before he moved to Germany, he was living in North Carolina, and he has tried his fair share of shrimp and grits as well. Here are his recommendations.

Shrimp {with bacon and mushrooms} and {smoked cheddar} Grits from NOLA in New Orleans, LA

Carolina’s Shrimp and Grits from Carolina’s in Charleston, SC

He would also like to add that Gewürztraminer is a great wine to pair with spicy dishes in general {in fact, Gewürz means ‘spice’ in German}, which is what makes it the ideal choice for the Creole Shrimp and Grits.


Don’t forget to vote for us in The Kitchn’s Small Cool Kitchens 2013!

TheKitchn Small Cool Kitchen 2013: Lauren's Tiny Yet Airy Kitchen

{We’re a Finalist} The Kitchn’s Small Cool Kitchens 2013

Two posts in one day? Sorry, I just couldn’t contain my excitement!

I’m beyond thrilled to announce that we have been selected as a finalist for The Kitchn’s Small Cool Kitchen of 2013.

TheKitchn Small Cool Kitchen 2013: Lauren's Tiny Yet Airy Kitchen

I’m just going to let this sink in for a quick minute.

TheKitchn Small Cool Kitchen 2013: Lauren's Tiny Yet Airy Kitchen

TheKitchn Small Cool Kitchen 2013: Lauren's Tiny Yet Airy Kitchen

TheKitchn Small Cool Kitchen 2013: Lauren's Tiny Yet Airy Kitchen

This is a huge deal for us. The Kitchn {an extension of Apartment Therapy} is one of the major food websites out there right now. It’s full of great recipes from some amazing food bloggers and provides lots of inspiration for designing beautiful kitchens. And I’m pretty stoked that we are on it!

Here comes the part where I ask you to go vote.

Now through August 6th, folks can vote of their favorite kitchen and the top 4 will go before the Judge Panel who determine the winner. So please, please, please head over to The Kitchn and favorite our kitchen! I will love you forever and ever. I will make you cookies. I will give you a tomato if ours ever actually come in. But really I will give you a gigantic hug and thank you profusely.

{Disclaimer: You do have to sign up for The Kitchn in order to vote, but I promise that they will not bombard your email with junk! Also, you should probably join The Kitchn anyway because it’s an incredible site.}

{JAM} Zac Brown Band: No Hurry

How was your weekend? We had a blast exploring the Black Forest, hiking up waterfalls, and relaxing at Lake Constance.

My parents head back to the States tomorrow, so today we are trying to fit in all the hugs, talks, and just general togetherness that we can. While we are soaking up every last minute, I thought I’d share another little something something from my kitchen playlist.

Happy Monday friends!

Friday Links

Hey there friends! What are you doing this weekend?

The Kiwi and I are off to meet my folks in the Black Forest. We’ll be exploring, hiking, and seeing some pretty spectacular sights. Oh, and did I mention we are staying in a freaking castle?!

If you’re in a reading mood this weekend, here are some fabulous links to keep ya busy. Have a great weekend!

Kiwi+Peach: Friday Links {Pöllat Waterfall at Neuschwanstein}

Tips for making your cut flowers last longer.

Well played J.K. Rowling. Well played.

Simple tip for flavorful grains.

Is ‘real food’ a fad?

This is spot on.

Can’t wait to try this bourbon peach sorbet.

Whoa, genetics.

36 days ’til kickoff.

Beautiful reminder.

It’s amazing what you can recycle!

Gorgeous botanical prints. Fo’ free!

Watermelon, Mint, and Feta Salad

It. is. so. hot.

I’ve started writing this post 5 times today and had to stop to go stick my head in the fridge. {TMI?} Come on, you know you do it too when it’s 50 million degrees outside. It’s days like this I miss air conditioning the most.

Our apartment is on the top floor of our building and we have huge windows in each room and the ceiling in the hall is a sky light. Please don’t get me wrong. I love, love, love all of our windows, but it’s a little like living in a green house and right now, that blows. Or rather doesn’t. Naturally we have all of the windows and doors open to create a cross-breeze which would significantly cool things down if the wind was blowing–which it’s not.

So I’ve resorted to sticking my head in the fridge and wishing it was big enough crawl inside. And while I’m there I might as well eat some watermelon, yes? And now that I’m thinking about watermelon I’m reminded that we have a lot of it. And since there is no way on God’s green earth I’m firing up that stove tonight, so I should probably figure out a salad.

Melon+mint is always a winner, right? Yes. Yes, it is.

Watermelon, Feta, and Mint Salad from Kiwi and Peach

Watermelon, Mint, and Feta Salad

The Salad Fixings
100 grams of mixed field greens
3-4 mint leaves
1/4 cup roasted pumpkin seeds {or sunflower, or flax, or etc.}
1/3 cup feta cheese, crumbled
1-2 cups watermelon, cubed {It’s kind of hard to actually measure. I used about 10 pieces on each salad.}

The Dress
{adapted from Tupelo Honey}
1/4 of a sweet onion, sliced
1 clove of garlic
juice from 1/2 of a lemon {about 1 Tbsp.}
2 tsp white wine vinegar
2-3 fresh oregano leaves
3-4 fresh basil leaves
big pinch of sugar
pinch of salt and black pepper
1/4 cup olive oil

Wash and dry your greens and mint leaves well. Thinly slice the mint leaves, and then mix them, the greens and the rest of the salad fixings together in a large bowl.

Toss all of the dressing ingredients {except the olive oil} in the food processor and pulse a couple of times. Add half the olive oil and process for about 10 seconds. Then add the other half and continue processing until it’s a consistency you like.

Pour the dressing over the salad fixings and toss well. Enjoy!

Summer Berry Apple Crumble

One of my favorite things to do in the summer is to go berry pickin’. Growing up my grandparents had a blueberry bush out back, and I could strip that thing in no time flat {some even ended up back in the kitchen too}.  When I was living in Athens {Georgia, not Greece}, my friends and I would head over to Washington Farms to get our fill of strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries! This would of course lead to lots of strawberry margaritas, blueberry pancakes, and berry salads for the following week. Despite our efforts, we could never quite manage to use all of them up before they would start going off and we had to drink a crazy amount of smoothies. {not complaining.} In retrospect, maybe we just shouldn’t have picked as much, but that thought never occurred to me then. I viewed it as a challenge, and I wish I’d had this recipe up my sleeve. You can use pretty much any berry you have on hand and it requires hardly any prep. Thats my kind of dessert!

Summer Berry Apple Crumble

{inspired by a recipe in one of Zane’s cookbooks Kiwi Favourites}

The Fruit
1 granny smith apple
1/4 cup blueberries
1/4 cup blackberries
1/2 cup strawberries
2 Tbsp brown sugar

The Crumble
1/4 cup oats
1/4 cup shredded coconut
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ginger
1 tsp allspice
1/4 cup butter, cubed and cold

Preheat the oven to 350°F/180°C.

Peel your apple and cut it into 1 inch cubes. Core your strawberries and cut them in halves or quarters {depending on the size}. Wash the other berries and throw all the fruit in a bowl. Sprinkle in the brown sugar and give it all a stir. Set the bowl to the side and let it sit for a bit while you make the crumble.

If you have a food processor, this is going to be a walk in the park. If you don’t… Why don’t you go grab a food processor? Toss all of the crumble ingredients in the food processor and process until the butter is incorporated and its crumbly. Simple. As. That. {If you don’t have access to a food processor, you can work the butter in using a fork or pastry cutter. I also recommend using slivered almonds instead of whole if you’re going this route. You can thank me later.}

Grease a pie dish {I used a 6 inch one}, and pour your berry mixture in. Sprinkle the crumble over the top, and pop it in the oven for 35-40 minutes or until the crumble has browned a bit and looks crispy!

Serve it hot with some frozen yogurt or whipped cream.

Kiwi+Peach: Summer Berry Apple CrumbleLinked to Fresh Food Wednesdays.