My Favorite Things Day

Sam the Cooking Guy is celebrating his birthday by making his favorite things. He makes 10 of his favorite things – abbreviated of course due to time constraints. He does breakfast, lunch, an appetizer and dinner. 

He begins with breakfast – Slow Scrambled Eggs.

Here is what you will need:

  • Bacon
  • Veggies you like; he uses red peppers, onion and shitake mushrooms
  • Four eggs
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • Cheese you like

To make the eggs:

  1. Chop and fry some bacon, remove from the pan when done and retain a small amount of grease in the pan
  2. Chop red peppers, onion and mushrooms (he uses shitake) and add to the pan with the bacon grease. Cook until softened
  3. He cracks four eggs in a bowl, beats with a fork, adds salt and pepper and a little cheese
  4. Turn the heat to low (eggs cook better low and slow), add a little butter, return the bacon to the pan and add the eggs to the pan and cook slowly stirring the eggs, bacon and veggies until the eggs are cooked

Sam likes to eat his Slow Scrambled eggs with a piece of toast. It is one of his favorite things. 

Wearing a different T-shirt for every recipe, Sam makes Smoked Salmon Benedict.


  • 4 eggs
  • White vinegar
  • 1 stick of butter
  • ¼ cup of chopped dill
  • 1 biscuit
  • Smoked salmon
  • Fresh ground salt and pepper

To make Smoked Salmon Benedict:

  1. Crack an egg in a small bowl and do not break the yolk
  2. Fill a small pot with water and add 1 TBL of vinegar. The vinegar helps pull the egg together as it poaches. When the water begins to barely boil create a vortex by stirring in a whirlpool motion and gently slipping in the egg
  3. Make blender hollandaise by combining three egg yolks, juice of ½ lemon, a pinch of salt and blending slowly until it becomes a pale yellow.
  4. Chop ¼ cup of dill and set aside
  5. When the egg is pale yellow and while the blender is running slowly add 1 stick of melted butter
  6. Add the dill and continue to blend until it thickens
  7. Check the egg for doneness, remove from water with a slotted spoon and let drain on a towel
  8. Sam uses a biscuit but an English muffin or waffle could be used. Slice the biscuit, add butter and place buttered side on grill for toasting
  9. To plate; layer smoked salmon on the biscuit, add the poached egg and top with a generous amount of the dill hollandaise and a little fresh ground pepper

Same gives it a taste and enjoys it tremendously. 

Next up is a Tomato & Potato Chip Sandwich

What to use:

  • Japanese mayonnaise
  • 2 slices of white bread
  • Fresh ground pepper
  • Kettle potato chips

To make Sam’s way:

  1. Spread a generous amount of Japanese mayonnaise on two slices of white bread
  2. Add thinly sliced tomato
  3. Top with fresh ground black pepper (salt not needed because of the chips)
  4. Add a handful of kettle potato chips
  5. Add the other slice of white bread and squish (Sam’s word) the top down to flatten the sandwich
  6. Slice with a knife and enjoy

Sam enjoyed it! 

Sam moves on to another favorite; Mashed Potato Taco.

He uses:

  • 2 green onions
  • 1 corn tortilla
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Sour cream
  • Hot sauce
  • Kettle chips

To make the taco:

  1. Cut up green onions in a fine dice
  2. Warm a tortilla on the griddle. Sam uses corn and a small appetizer size
  3. Warm the masked potatoes. Leftovers are good or make or buy some. Any kind will do.
  4. Smear the warmed tortilla with sour cream
  5. Add some mashed potatoes
  6. Top with your choice of hot sauce and add a generous amount of the finely chopped green onions
  7. Crush Kettle chips and add to the top
  8. Fold (if you can) and enjoy


It’s time for Sam’s appetizer; Salt and Pepper Shrimp.

He uses:

  • A wok
  • Ginger
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 4 green onions
  • Kosher salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • Oil
  • 8-10 large shell-on deveined shrimp
  1. Begin by heating the wok
  2. Cut a one inch piece of ginger to a fine dice
  3. Finely chop a large clove of garlic
  4. Cut green onions in one inch pieces
  5. Mix kosher salt and fresh ground pepper in a little bowl( a lot to cover the shrimp)
  6. Add oil to the wok
  7. Add the shrimp, followed by ginger, garlic, and green onions
  8. Keep the ingredients moving as they cook. Cook about two minutes until shrimp is done
  9. Add a generous amount of the salt and pepper mixture. It won’t be too much because the shrimp are shell-on deveined shrimp and the shell will absorb most of the seasoning 

This is a finger food. Eat by separating the shell, squeeze where the shrimp meets the tail and peel off the shell. Sam describes it as a beautifully seasoned, perfectly cooked (not over cooked) shrimp. 

Recipe # 6 is Sam’s Margarita. Here are the ingredients and how he makes it:

  1. Add ice to shaker
  2. Add 1 part tequila
  3. Half part sweet and sour
  4. Splash of Roses Lime Juice
  5. Splash of Grand Marnie
  6. Squeeze in a little fresh lime and fresh orange
  7. Shake vigorously
  8. Add ice to a glass, pour , hit with another squeeze of fresh lime and orange and serve 

Another Sam favorite is Crispy Salmon.

To make the salmon use:

  • 1 skinless fillet of salmon
  • Sesame chili oil
  • Regular sesame oil
  • Mashed potatoes
  • Diced green onion
  • Salt 

Here is what to do:

  1. Heat a pan to hot
  2. Coat a small skinless filet of salmon on both sides with sesame chili oil
  3. Place filet face down in the hot pan
  4. When it is cooked ¼ of the way up the side, flip it and do the same on the other side. It stays rare in the middle and is perfect
  5. While the salmon is cooking, Sam heats mashed potatoes on the stove, adds some diced green onions, a splash of regular sesame oil and a little salt 

When the salmon is done, Sam adds a bed of mashed potatoes to the plate, tops with the salmon and garnishes with some diced green onion. Don’t overcook the salmon and get a bite of the salmon and mashed potatoes together – a great combination of flavors. 

Sam’s #8 favorite is Scallops.

He uses:

  • 3 green onions diced
  • Softened butter
  • Fresh ginger
  • Oil, kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
  • Rice

 Cook like Sam:

  1. Dice green onions super fine
  2. Add ½ the onions to softened putter
  3. Cut up fresh ginger adding it to the butter and mixing well
  4. Coat scallops with a little oil, add kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
  5. Place scallops in a hot pan(need to hear the sear/sizzle or pan not hot enough) cook about two minutes on each side
  6. While scallops cook Sam adds some rice he has already made to a bowl
  7. He turns the scallops and after 30 seconds he adds some of the compound butter he made, as it melts baste the top of the scallops
  8. When scallops are done, take one and plate on top of the rice adding a little of the browned butter from the pan and garnish with green onion 

Sam uses chop sticks (optional) to savor his favorite and declares; “OMG fantastic!” It is definitely a favorite. 

Next on the dinner menu is Ribeye Steak; Thick cut and Sam’s favorite.

Follow Sam’s lead:

  1. Rub canola oil on both sides of the steak
  2. Add a lot of kosher salt and fresh ground pepper to both sides of the steak to season well (it is a big piece of meat)
  3. Add the steak to a super-hot cast iron pan
  4. Sear steak 1 and ½ to 2 minutes per side without touching it
  5. Keep the steak in the cast iron and place in a hot, 450° oven and cook until it reaches an internal temperature of 130°, remove from oven and let it rest 

Sam serves it with some compound butter. He says it is totally unnecessary, but he likes it and he always has some in his refrigerator. He made this one by combining butter, diced green onions and chipotle peppers. He adds a coin of the butter to the top of the steak, tents it with foil, lets it rest for 5 to 10 minutes to let the juices redistribute, cuts and enjoys. 

Sam’s # 10 is a dessert. Since Sam doesn’t really make desserts he enlists the help of his sister-in-law Cheryl. 

Cheryl has made Sam, Salted Brown Butter Rice Krispy Treats. She describes them as Rice Krispy Treats “kicked up a notch”. They are made of Rice Krispy cereal, brown butter, sea salt and a bag of marshmallows.

Here is what she used and how she made them:

  • Rice Krispy cereal
  • Butter
  • Sea salt
  • 10 oz. bag of marshmallows
  1. Follow the Rice Krispy treats recipe on the box
  2. Brown the butter
  3. Add a little sea salt
  4. Combine ingredients
  5. Cool, cut and serve

Cheryl says it takes maybe an extra 5 minutes over the regular recipe to brown the butter. 

Sam loves the addition of the brown butter and sea salt. 

Sam says, “Make the food you love.” Happy birthday Sam!