Egg Casserole

At a recent morning presentation on the Primal Blueprint, where I decided to bring some primal-acceptable foods for a snack, I decided to whip up a breakfast casserole with what I had on hand.

I did some online searching and found some basic recipes so I had a target for time, temperature, etc.  I also had this list of ingredients available to work with;

  • 1-1/2 dozen eggs
  • Cheddar cheese
  • Swiss cheese
  • Baked ham (~1 pound)
  • Fresh broccoli
  • Chopped bacon
  • Chopped onion
  • Grass fed butter

I don't actually remember the time and temperature but it took quite a bit longer than I thought but turned out quite good, and it's a good, balance dish from a nutrition standpoint.

A good balance of fat, protein, and some carbohydrate.

Quality, as usual, is a little more difficult to estimate since the sources aren't always known.  I did know I had good quality eggs from pastured chickens at a local farm.  The broccoli was organic so the quality there is good.  The ham, cheese and bacon are just what I could pick up at the store so I suspect the quality there is not quite as good.

Finally, the micro-nutrition in this dish is probably pretty good as well.  With eggs from pastured chickens and the organic broccoli, there are some good micronutrients.  I think a dish with more vegetables might be a bit better from a micronutrient standpoint but I think this dish isn't bad.

Newk's Ultimate Salad

I usually don't end up getting as many vegetables as I would like, so at least once a week I will usually go get a big salad for lunch.  In this case I went to Newk's, a restaurant located a short walk from where I work.  The "Ultimate" salad is what I usually get, and it's a pretty healthy and appetizing choice.

Newk's ultimate salad is basically a chef's salad including leaf lettuce, cucumbers, tomatoes as well as cheese, grilled chicken, ham, turkey, and bacon.  I get it without their honey mustard dressing and instead use the olive oil and vinegar they have available.  In this way I avoid the sugar and bad fats that are likely in the pre-made dressing and probably get something more healthy.  (I say probably because so many olive oils are cut with unhealthy oils it's hard to tell.  I figure I am more likely to get a healthier oil if it at least says olive oil, but no guarantees.)

The macro nutrient content in a salad like this is pretty good.  A good balance of fat and protein and low level of carbohydrates.  (Note that I eat this without the croutons.)  The only thing I would change is the grape tomatoes which have a higher sugar content than regular tomatoes but there's not that much to worry about.

The quality of this meal is a little more in doubt.  I have no idea the source of the meats or cheeses.  The saving grace on the meat in this meal is that most of the proteins are lean (chicken breast and turkey breast.)  The good nutrients in properly raised meat, or the bad nutrients in improperly raised meat, is stored primarily in the fat.  This means that when the quality of the source is questionable, a leaner cut is better.  Not much choice as far as the cheese, so you're stuck with the quality that you get.

On the micronutrient scale, I would rate this meal reasonably high.  With the raw vegetables and possibly the olive oil, (assuming it's reasonably high quality virgin olive oil) there are plenty of vitamins and minerals.  There could be a wider variety of vegetables to make it even better, but this isn't bad.

Overall a good lunch and a good part of a healthy, low carbohydrate diet.