During the weekdays, I try to keep breakfast very simple. Usually oatmeal, not instant, cereal or an open faced egg sandwich.
I want to make sure we do eat something since breakfast is such an important meal of the day, but I also want to make sure I get lunch prepared (I prefer to make it in the morning than the night before...maybe not the most time conducive but it works for me). It's much healthier and more economical these days to take our lunch instead of eating out. Those days when I don't pack a lunch, my indecisiveness rears it's ugly head, I don't end up eating until 2 or 3pm and it's usually not something that ends up sitting in my stomach for a few hours (thanks Mickey D's).
Now don't get me wrong, I love McDonald's. In fact, it is one of the few fast food chains I do eat. They just have fast food down to a science. No matter where you are, you can count on Mickey D's. One of my best friends always tries to remind me of that movie about McDonald's food....Super Size Me. But I tell her I think moderation is the key to just about every food we consume.
As a child, I definitely preferred McDonald's over BK (just like I preferred Michael Jackson, R.I.P, over Prince...and I was a child true to my convictions). McDonald's was always me and my Daddy's special treat on the weekends. So basically, it's in my blood. I won't stop eating McDonald's, but it definitely is no longer a weekly ritual as it was when I was a child.
Since I am a McDonald's fan, including their breakfast menu (love the sausage McMuffin with egg), I decided to jazz up our weekday breakfast menu with homemade sausage and egg "McMuffin"
I used fresh ground chicken sausage, that I seasoned with ground fennel, salt and pepper, so this treat added maybe an additional 5 minutes to the usual open faced egg sandwich. And I tell you it was worth every bit of 5 minutes.
The beauty of making your own "McMuffin" is that you can choose whatever kind of cheese (American, cheddar, mozzarella, pepper jack) or meat (fresh, frozen, patties, links, bacon) you want. Since Mr. Foodie doesn't eat pork, whenever we do eat McDonald's for breakfast he has to get an Egg McMuffin without the bacon, which I think is truly a tragedy in itself. Needless to say, this truly appeals to his appetite.
I won't even go into the nutritional and economical benefits of making the homemade version. I did find an article that goes into a little more detail and will most likely convince you more than I could. I can just tell you it tastes great and can be custom fitted to your liking. Can't get much better than that.
*There really is no exact recipe for this sandwich. You can really play around with it to suit your preferences. I'll just tell you how I made mine.
ground chicken sausage, approximately 1/4 cup, seasoned with ground fennel, salt and pepper
1 English Muffin (I prefer Thomas' brand)
handful shredded jack and colby cheese
butter, for frying egg
salt and pepper for seasoning
Spray a small fry pan with cooking spray and heat over medium-high heat. Form the chicken sausage into a flattened patty. Cook the sausage until done and browned, approximately 3 minutes per side. Set aside
Break the English muffin apart, using a fork. You want to keep the nooks and crannies. Sprinkle the cheese on both the bottom and top halves of the muffin. Put in toaster oven and toast until cheese has melted.
While the muffin is toasting, cook the egg. Add butter to the small fry pan and melt, allowing the butter to coat the bottom. Break the egg into the pan. Gently pierce egg yolk with spatula and season egg with salt and pepper. When the egg white begins to set, flip the egg.
Assemble the sandwich by placing the sausage on the bottom half of the muffin, place the egg on top of the sausage and top with the other half of the muffin. Serve and enjoy