Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Green Eggs and Ham

Whenever I tell people that I write this blog, people inevitably ask me if I've written about Green Eggs and Ham yet.  I haven't, mainly because the thought of eating green eggs is not all that appetizing, and I needed to find a way that I could make them taste delicious and look delicious, preferably without using food coloring, and also kid friendly.  Well, I think I found a way.  But first things first.

Green Eggs and Ham was written by Dr. Seuss back in 1960.  The story goes that his editor, Bennett Cerf, loved The Cat In The Hat (which itself was written because Dr. S thought that Dick and Jane were boring), but was surprised that it contained 225 words.  He bet the author that he couldn't write a book using only 50 words, and the result was our beloved story.  (49 of the words, incidentally, are monosyllabic; the only standout is "anywhere.")  Now, I just find this whole thing amazing.  It's hard enough to write a good story, let alone a good story that can stand the test of time, but to write such a story that only uses 50 words sparkles with genius. 

If there are any of you out there who are unfamiliar, the basic premise of this book is that our narrator's friend Sam-I-Am keeps pestering him to try green eggs and ham, a dish that he says he doesn't like.  He doesn't want them with any number of dining partners or in any number of locations.  "I do not like them, Sam-I-Am!" he protests over and over again.  Finally, our hero relents and tries a bite, if only to be left alone, but finds to his surprise that he actually does enjoy the odd dish, and he would, in the future, eat them with a fox, on a box, and so forth.  Hooray for trying new things!

Speaking of trying new things, I tried a new recipe for this entry, and I think it came out rather well.  After rejecting several ideas, I finally made Green Eggs and Ham Cups, the green coming from pesto sauce that was spooned on top. 

Green Eggs and Ham Cups
Ham, sliced somewhat thick (I asked for "kinda thick slices" at the deli and they were perfect)
Peppers, onions, cheeses, and other omelette-type fillings, all diced into small pieces
Pesto sauce

1. Preheat your oven to 375.  Lightly grease a muffin tin, and insert one slice of ham into each cup, fluting it around the edges if necessary.
2. Add cheeses and vegetables to the bottom of the ham cups, trying not to put too much in.
3. Add one egg to each ham cup.  I did this without spilling by cracking one egg into a measuring cup with a spout, and pouring it from there to the muffin tin.  This way, I could check there were no eggshells in the egg, and I could easily pour it in without getting egg all over the tin and my hands.   (Alternately, you can scramble the egg and pour the scramble-y mixture in.  We made a few of each.)
4. Bake in the oven for 15-20 minutes, until each egg has set.
5. Top with pesto sauce, and serve with toast, sausage, fresh fruit, or any other breakfast goodies.  Enjoy!

Right out of the oven and still in the muffin tin, they looked like this:

And then with the pesto, the cross-section of the Green Eggs and Ham looks like this:

I need to make these again soon.  So good!

I think these are especially kid-friendly because they're:
a) fully customizable - put in whatever you want!
b) easy for kids to help assemble - putting ham into cups, adding fillers, cracking and pouring eggs.
c) a good way to get little ones to try new flavors and meals while eating mostly-familiar ones.

So, I think this was a good one, but I'd love to know what you think.  Do you like Green Eggs and Ham?  Or would you do it differently?  You can tell me here in the comments, on the KCTB Facebook fan page, or you can email me at KatCooksTheBooks@gmail.com.


  1. Love the new logo and redesign!

    As for the green eggs and ham... I don't think I'd try them, Sam-I-am. I'm not big on pesto. But the idea of ham/egg cups is quite intriguing! And I may give that a shot, with a hollandaise perhaps.

    You've made a very dark pesto, and at first I thought you had used 1000 year old eggs! Imagine my relief when it was just a rich pesto!

    Great write up! I do enjoy the imaginative take on, what one might think to have been, a slam dunk.

  2. My pesto was store-bought Bertolli brand pesto, and it was delicious - and not that dark; my colors must be off. If you don't like pesto, though, can I recommend salsa verde? That would be a tasty substitution, and make it less Eggs Italiano and more Huevos Rancheros. And still green!

  3. They look delicious! What about avocado and/or guacamole as an alternative to pesto?

  4. We had a melded Christmas dinner between my wife's family traditions (Polish) and our stepson's girlfriend's family (Argentinian). I used the memory of Green Eggs and Ham (still able to quote parts of it!) to get her niece to just try pierogie and sausage which she did like.

  5. Anon - Thank you! I think guacamole would be delicious with eggs. I'll have to try that. Anything green should work, really - I just didn't want to use food coloring if I could help it.

    Tim - in my opinion, the only thing better than sharing new books with someone is sharing books and food at the same time. :)