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Ontario, Canada
I am a wife, mother and grandma who enjoys the many aspects of homemaking. A variety of interests and hobbies combined with travel keep me active. They reflect the importance of family, friends, home and good food.
Cook ingredients that you are used to cooking by other techniques, such as fish, chicken, or hamburgers. In other words be comfortable with the ingredients you are using.
--Bobby Flay

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Friday, May 23, 2008

Breakfast at Magnolia's Veranda

We are back from our vacation in Las Vegas so the next few posts will be a combination of what we ate, what I've already tried at home and what I want to try duplicating. We don't eat a lot of hot breakfasts at home other than perhaps a few Sundays so when we are on vacation we like to indulge. As always our food choices tend towards homestyle meals. The food serving sizes including breakfast in Las Vegas are huge by most standards but at the same time the prices are very low. We normally eat a large breakfast and a large dinner, skipping lunch entirely most days.

Ham & Sunny Side-up Eggs

We were staying at the Four Queens as we normally do. I love it in the old downtown area and feel quite safe walking around by myself. The Four Queens offers a variety of dining options including Hugo's Cellar, Magnolia's Veranda, Chicago Brewing Company, Queens Coffee & Deli, Subway, Dreyer's and Nobel Roman's Pizza. Hugo's Cellar has been the Reader's Choice since 1991, offering a gourmet dining experience. Magnolia's overlooks the gaming floor and offers home style meals so is our main choice when eating at the Four Queens. The Chicago Brewery Company also overlooks the gaming floor. Their pizza is quite lovely as is their hand crafted micro brews. All menus are available in pdf format for downloading on the Four Queens website. As with most casinos, the meals may be complimentary (comped) depending on your play.

Magnolia's serves a nice ham steak and egg breakfast. It comes with choice of toast, biscuit or English muffin, hash brown potatoes, two eggs, large ham steak and coffee. Like many of their meals it is served on a platter style plate with very little of the plate showing. For $6.95 it is a substantial and filling meal but if you have a player's card, the price is only $4.95.

Poached Eggs & Country Fried Steak

My husband loves his eggs poached which is just fine with me as they are low fat due to their cooking method. However, he paired them with country fried steak and a white gravy. He first discovered this white gravy while traveling in the southern states. It's normally made from sausage drippings then served with bisquits. He loved it so much that I experimented to make it at home but I make it without using a rue. Much to his dismay, I only make it a couple of times a year. That way it stays a bit of a treat. This is a rich, thick gravy (recipe follows) sure to please.

Country fried steak is simply steak coated with the same bread coating that you would put on chicken. It is a southern dish usually made with tenderized round steak that is breaded then fried in hot fat until the coating is crispy. I'm not sure where the dish originated although there has been speculation that the dish first appeared in print in 1952. Magnolia's serves the homemade country fried steak with two eggs, hash brown potatoes, country gravy and choice of English muffin, biscuit or toast. At $7.95 it is another good bargain. There is no player's club discount for this meal.

Sausage Gravy

4 sausage links
1 tbsp butter
2 c milk
1 tbsp flour
fresh ground pepper

Melt the butter in a medium hot pan. Fry the sausage in the butter until well cooked, breaking the links into small pieces as it fries. Stir in all but 1/4 c of the milk. Stir the remaining milk into the flour to form a slurry. Slowly and while still stirring, stir the slurry into the sausage mixture. Cook until thickened (less than 5 minutes). Remove from heat. Sprinkle with fresh ground pepper. Stir and serve.

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