A Good Shepherd’s Pie!

This wonderfully delicious, satisfying meal is one of my very favorites! Shepherd’s Pie originated in the late 1800’s in the sheep country of Scotland and northern England, and hence the name, Shepherd’s Pie! An inexpensive British dish made with minced or diced lamb and topped with a thick layer of mashed potatoes, peasant housewives invented the pies as a way of repackaging leftovers from the Sunday roast.

Today, Shepherd’s Pie is often prepared with ground beef instead of diced or minced lamb because lamb has become more costly. Regardless whether you choose to use lamb or ground beef, you will find this meal to be very good!

Shepherd’s Pie
Serves: 6

Ingredients:

Mashed potatoes – your recipe or a pre-prepared package such as Bob Evans (48 ounces)
1-1/2 pounds lean ground beef
1/2 teaspoon of pepper
1 yellow onion, medium diced
2 garlic cloves, minced
One 10.75-ounce can condensed tomato soup
One 14.5-ounce can diced tomatoes with their juice
One 12-ounce bag of either frozen peas or green beans, thawed
1 cup shredded Cheddar cheese

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350℉. Grease a 10 x 14-inch casserole dish (or similar sized dish) with butter. Prepare the mashed potatoes.

Cook the ground beef half-way in a large skillet over medium-high heat, seasoned with 1/2 teaspoon of pepper. Add the onion and garlic, stirring until the onion is softened and the ground beef is completely cooked. Drain the excess fat. Reduce the heat to medium and add the tomato soup, diced tomatoes with their juice, and the green beans or peas. Simmer a few minutes until heated through.

Spoon the mixture into the casserole dish and smooth out evenly. Spoon and spread the mashed potatoes evenly over the top. Sprinkle evenly with the shredded cheddar.

Bake until bubbling, 30 to 35 minutes. Let stand for 5 minutes and then serve.

Delicious served with fresh sliced tomatoes or a green salad!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

I love the name of this recipe and I think it’s so cool that Shepherd’s Pie involves a covering of white because as a follower of the Good Shepherd, Jesus Christ, my sins are now white as snow, covered, forgiven and forgotten through what my sweet Savior did for me! I am so grateful that Christ calls Himself the Good Shepherd. “He calls His own sheep by name and leads them out. After He has gathered His own flock, He walks ahead of them, and they follow Him because they know His voice.” (John 10:3-4 NLT) “I am the good shepherd; and I know My sheep, and am known by My own.” (John 10:14) The word “good” in the Greek means “ideal, worthy, choice, excellent” and I would have to say “amen” to every one of those, wouldn’t you? Not only is He good, He “calls His own by name” and “they follow Him because they know His voice.” As a follower of Jesus and as I consider His words, it gives me pause. How clearly do I hear His voice? How well do I really know him? Oh, that I would know Him as well as He knows me! That when the Good Shepherd speaks, directs, and leads, I would hear, obey, and follow! Today and every day, let’s endeavor to know our Good Shepherd more, to hear His voice clearer, and to experience His love deeper.

— Cheri Henderson

A Moniker that Honors

In the culinary arts, the word “Florentine” refers to a recipe that is prepared with spinach and cream in combination with a main ingredient such as poultry, fish, or eggs. Such recipes are named in honor of the city of Florence, Italy, where this culinary art was created, for example, Chicken Florentine, Fish Florentine, Eggs Florentine. The moniker honors the place of creation! Today we will honor the city of Florence by preparing a wonderfully delicious Chicken Florentine!

Chicken Florentine
Serves: 4

Ingredients:
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts (about 6 oz. each)
1 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 and 3/4 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/2 cup minced shallots
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 cup of quality dry white wine
1 cup heavy cream
4 cups baby spinach (about 3 oz.)
1 tablespoon chopped fresh parsley

Directions:
In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat (#5 or at the half-way point on your burner dial). Sprinkle the chicken with the pepper and 2 teaspoons of the salt. Dredge in the flour, shaking off any excess. Place the chicken in the skillet and cook, turning once, for approximately 8 minutes per side until golden brown on both sides and a thermometer inserted in the thickest part of the chicken registers 165°F. Transfer to a plate to cool and set aside.

With the heat still on medium, melt the butter in the same skillet. Add the minced shallots and garlic and sauté for about 2 minutes, stirring often until just softened. Add the wine, scraping up any browned bits on the bottom of the skillet, and turn the heat down to a simmer. Let simmer for about 10 minutes, until the liquid is reduced by half. Add the cream and cook for about 5 minutes, stirring often until the mixture can coat the back of a spoon.

Remove the pan from the heat and add the spinach and remaining 3/4 teaspoon of salt. Stir until the spinach is wilted.

Cut the chicken against the grain into diagonal strips, 1 inch wide and 2 to 3 inches long, and return it to the skillet, lightly mixing it with the other ingredients. Simmer for another 5 minutes or so. 

Garnish with parsley and serve.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

As followers of Jesus Christ, we also carry a moniker, don’t we? It is “Christian” and its purpose is to honor Jesus Christ, our Creator, Redeemer, Savior, and Lord. Similarly to the recipe’s title, if you place your name before this mighty moniker, it becomes a powerful, influential signature as to who we are, who we represent, and who we honor, doesn’t it? In my case, it is “Cheri Christian”. While we don’t identify ourselves in this way in the natural (though perhaps it would be a good reminder to us and a statement to the world if we did), it is completely accurate in the spiritual, isn’t it? As such, let us try to remember to bring glory to Jesus in all we do and never besmirch the precious Name we carry!

— Cheri Henderson

As you breathe . . .

I’m not sure who wrote the following, but it is SO good, I just had to share it with you! You may think it has nothing to do with cooking, but it really does! It has everything to do with everything you do! As you cook, as you work, as you play, as you sleep . . . you breathe without even thinking about it. And as you do, you’re actually doing something more than you realize.

“There was a moment when Moses had the nerve to ask God what his name was. God was gracious enough to answer, and the name he gave is recorded in the original Hebrew as YHWH.

Over time we’ve arbitrarily added an “a” and an “e” in there to get YaHWeH, presumably because we have a preference for vowels. But scholars and rabbis have noted that the letters YHWH represent breathing sounds, or aspirated consonants. When pronounced without intervening vowels, it actually sounds like breathing. YH (inhale): WH (exhale).

So a baby’s first cry, his first breath, speaks the name of God. A deep sigh calls His name – or a groan or gasp that is too heavy for mere words. Even an atheist would speak His name unaware that their very breath is giving constant acknowledgment to God. Likewise, as a person leaves this earth, their last breath speaks the name of God.

So when I can’t utter anything else, is my cry calling out His name?

Being alive means I speak His name constantly. Is it heard the loudest when I’m the quietest?

In sadness, we breathe heavy sighs. In joy, our lungs feel almost like they will burst. In fear, we hold our breath and have to be told to breathe slowly to help us calm down. When we’re about to do something hard, we take a deep breath to find our courage.

When I think about it, breathing is giving him praise. Even in the hardest moments!

This is so beautiful and fills me with emotion every time I grasp the thought. God chose to give himself a name that we can’t help but speak every moment we’re alive. All of us, always, everywhere. Waking, sleeping, breathing, with the name of God on our lips.

— Cheri Henderson

Feelin’ Stronger Every Day!

Salisbury Steak got its start as a recognized food in America when it was used as a source of protein for soldiers during the American Civil War. During that time, soldiers were regularly fed “soldier biscuits” containing dried vegetables or fruit, but the high yeast and low protein of these “meals” began to create disease. One of the most serious threats to the soldiers was “wasting”, a severe and potentially life-threatening physical deterioration with loss of strength and muscle mass due to chronic diarrhea and malnutrition.

Dr. James Henry Salisbury, who served as a physician during the war, became convinced that the troops who were suffering from this condition needed protein (and specifically beef). He tested his theory by providing “chopped beef” to the soldiers and his theory was proven correct! Their health improved, their strength increased, and Salisbury Steak was born!

So if you’re feeling a little weak this evening or if you’re just hungry for a fantastic meal, there is nothing quite as satisfying as a plate of Salisbury Steak nestled in a bed of mashed potatoes and covered with warm beef gravy!

Let’s make some!

Crockpot Salisbury Steak
(Serves: 4)

Ingredients:

For the patties:
– 1 pound ground beef
– 1/2 cup of crushed Townhouse or Ritz crackers
– 1 egg
– 2 tablespoons milk
– 1/8 teaspoon salt
– 1/4 teaspoon pepper
– 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
– 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
– 2 tablespoons canola oil

For the gravy:
– 10.5 oz can cream of mushroom soup
– Two .87 oz packets of brown gravy mix
– 1-1/4 cup water
– 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

Veggies:
– 2 cups sliced mushrooms
– 1 white onion sliced

Directions:

1. In a large bowl add the ground beef, crushed crackers, egg, milk, salt, pepper, garlic powder, and oregano. Mix together with clean hands; don’t overmix. Form the meat into 4 patties and set aside.
2. In another large bowl, whisk together the cream of mushroom soup, gravy packets, water and thyme until smooth. Set aside.
3. In a large skillet set over medium-high heat, add enough oil to coat the bottom of the pan. When the oil and pan are hot, add the patties and brown on both sides. No need to cook through.
4. Add half of the mushrooms and onions to the bottom of the crockpot. Add the patties on top. Add remaining onions and mushrooms on top of the patties. Pour over gravy mixture.
5. Cover and cook on low for 4.5 hours without opening the lid during the cooking time.
6. Serve over mashed potatoes with a side of green beans or buttered corn!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

As followers of Jesus Christ, we have no shortage of strength and power available to us from our Lord. In fact, the “meat” of His Word, confirms it over and over! (1 Corinthians 3:1-3)

Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. (Isaiah 40:31) The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and he helps me. The Lord is the strength of his people, a fortress of salvation for his anointed one. (Psalm 28:7-8) I love you, Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. (Psalm 18:1-2)

And if the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead is living in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will also give life to your mortal bodies through his Spirit, who lives in you. (Romans 8:11) That is some mighty power! And you’ve got it!

So, I encourage you, my friends, to finally be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power! (Ephesians 6:10) You can do all things through Him who gives you strength! (Philippians 4:13)

– Cheri Henderson

Feeling Fried

At the end of a long day when you are beyond exhausted and unable to process another thought, have you ever used the phrase “I am completely fried”? If you have, then you probably know the word “fried” is slang for “tired, worn out, or exhausted”. (It’s also slang for drunk or intoxicated, so be careful that your listeners understand what you mean if you describe yourself in this manner! Lol!)

In this case, I promise you the “fried” chicken presented here is neither exhausted nor stoned, and it is, in fact, one of the most delicious fried chicken recipes you will ever prepare! The last thing you need when you’re feeling “fried”, is a complicated recipe that requires more energy than you have to offer and puts you in a “fowl” mood. This is not one!

So let’s get frying!

Fried Boneless Chicken Breasts
Serves: 2-4

Ingredients:

4-6 thinly cut boneless skinless chicken breasts
1-1/2 cup all purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon black pepper
¼ teaspoon onion powder
½ teaspoon paprika
½ teaspoon dried thyme
3-4 dashes of hot sauce
1 cup buttermilk (or 1 cup of milk stirred with 1 teaspoon of white vinegar and let sit for 15 minutes)
Canola cooking oil – enough for frying (about ½” in a large skillet)

Directions:

Combine hot sauce and buttermilk. In a separate bowl (or a zip-loc gallon bag), combine the flour, seasonings, and herbs together. Heat the cooking oil over medium heat until heated. Dip the chicken into the buttermilk, dredge in the flour mixture, and add to the hot skillet. Fry on each side, turning every 3 minutes until cooked (cooking time is 12-15 minutes depending on the thickness of the chicken).Serve with warmed barbecue sauce and buttered corn on the cob, or some mashed potatoes, gravy, and green beans!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

So, are you feeling a little “fried”? I hope that your times of exhaustion are few and far between or, even better, non-existent. But I know that life, at times, can simply wear us out … as we’re busy doing life, juggling responsibilities, facing deadlines, pressure, and stress, and trying to get it all done. If you are battling exhaustion or weariness, it is in those times that Jesus says “Come away with me. Let us go alone to a quiet place and rest for a while.” (Mark 6:31)

Your world won’t end if you take a break. The Lord is fully in control and “in him all things hold together” (Colossians 1:17) … even your little piece of the world. If you stop and catch your breath for a minute, everything is not going to fall apart. In fact, this is where faith comes in. Even though you may be completely exhausted, if you refuse to take a break, could it be you lack the faith to believe God is in charge and He can handle things without you?

Come away with Jesus to a quiet place and rest for a while. He will refresh and restore you because He loves you. “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28) “I give strength to the weary and increase the power of the weak.” (Isaiah 40:29)

– Cheri Henderson

“Say Cheeseburger Soup”

Most of you have heard the phrase “say cheese” to encourage the appearance of a smile when being photographed, whether felt or not. Have you noticed, however, in old photographs from decades past that this obviously wasn’t the case? No one ever seemed to smile! Why? During those days, the elite and powerful were the only ones who could afford to have photographs taken of themselves, and they would remain stoic because smiling was seen as flighty and only something the lower class or children would do. And in those instances where less fortunate individuals could perhaps afford a photograph or two, they would imitate the norm.

In both cases, perhaps the photographer should have said “say cheeseburger soup” instead! That startling suggestion might have prompted a true smile or even a laugh from both parties! In any event, I guarantee a few sips of this delicious soup will definitely bring a little smile to your lips and joy to your belly!

Cheeseburger Soup
Serves: 8

Ingredients:

4 small russet potatoes peeled and diced
1 small white or yellow onion chopped
3/4 cup shredded carrots
3/4 cup diced celery
1 teaspoon dried basil
1 teaspoon dried parsley
3 cups chicken broth
1 pound lean ground beef
3 Tablespoons butter
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1-1/2 cups whole milk
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 package (16 ounces) Velveeta processed cheese

Directions:

Place potatoes, onions, carrots, celery, dried basil and parsley in a large crock pot. Pour chicken broth over vegetables. Cover with lid. Cook on low heat 6 to 8 hours OR on high heat 4 to 5 hours or until potatoes are tender.

About 45 minutes before serving, cook and crumble ground beef in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Drain any grease. Pour cooked ground beef into crock pot. Carefully wipe out hot skillet with a paper towel then add butter. When butter is melted whisk in flour and cook until golden brown and bubbly (about 1 minute.) Whisk in the milk, salt and pepper. Pour mixture into the crock pot and stir to combine everything. Add the cubed velveeta cheese or to the crock pot. Stir again. Cover with lid and cook another 30 minutes or until cheese is melted.

Serve and enjoy!


FOOD FOR THOUGHT:


How sad that back in the day a smile was something less than desirable and, even more so, no one was bold enough to counter that philosophy with something that would shatter the lie, bring joy to the heart and a real smile to the lips. Sure, cheeseburger soup might bring a moment’s pleasure to the pallet, but real joy isn’t found in a sip of soup. It’s found in the salvation of a Savior. When this becomes a reality in your life, I guarantee that when you say His name, it will bring a smile to your lips and joy to your heart! Just “say Jesus!”

– Cheri Henderson

Be Well!


Wassail is a delicious beverage made from hot apple cider and mulling spices, and has been associated with Christmas and the New Year as far back as the 1400s. An annual tradition of passing on good wishes among family and friends, wassail was (and still is) part of the English Yuletide celebration of “wassailing”, the practice of going door-to-door and singing songs of joy and blessings to the neighbors.

Wassail gets its name from the Old English term “waes hael”, meaning “be well”, and it was a Saxon custom that during the Yuletide celebration, the lord of the manor would shout the blessing to his gathered friends and family. So, whether you’re planning to carry a thermos and a few styrofoam cups as you go door-to-door in song or just open up your home to family and friends for a holiday celebration, this recipe will provide them with a wonderfully delicious cup of wassail!

Wassail (Hot Spiced Cider)

Ingredients:

1 gallon apple cider or apple juice
1 cup orange juice
1/4 cup maple syrup
1/2 teaspoon orange extract
1/2 teaspoon lemon extract
4 cinnamon sticks
2 teaspoons whole cloves
1 teaspoon whole allspice

Directions:

In a Dutch oven or large soup pot, combine the first 5 ingredients. Place the cinnamon sticks, cloves and allspice equally in 2 or 3 coffee filters. Bring up the edges of the filters and secure each with a small, clean rubber-band. Add to the pan. Cook, uncovered, over medium heat for 10-15 minutes or until flavors are blended (do not boil). Discard the spice bags.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

No matter the time of the year, there is nothing more beautiful than to be able to bless someone in the Name of the Lord. In fact, the lyrics from one of the most popular wassailing carols goes like this:

“Love and joy come to you,
and to you your wassail too,
and may God bless and send you
a happy new year,
and God send you
a happy new year.”

The writer of this song may or may not have known that the real source of love and joy is only found through a relationship with Jesus Christ. I pray this is true for you, however, and that God, our Heavenly Father, will bless you abundantly as you live a life dedicated to His Son, the One who died to save you.

And with that, I will shout “Waes hael!” “Be well!” Or even better, 3 John 1:2: “Beloved, I pray that all may go well with you and that you may be in good health, as it goes well with your soul!”

– Cheri Henderson

The Blessing of the Bounty

It’s summertime, and the garden is producing massive quantities of zucchini right now! So, using the blessing of the bounty that is at hand, what’s for dinner tonight? Zucchini Lasagna!

Now don’t scrunch your nose; after all who said pasta noodles are an absolute lasagna requirement? Rigid expectations when it comes to cooking long-recognized entrees can limit inventive approaches to creating new and equally delicious entrees … new entrees that can still please the “old-schoolers” and also appeal to the “carb-conscious” gang! So, let’s get creative and produce something that, just like the old-school recipe, can wonderfully fill the tummies of our friends and family.

Zucchini Lasagna

(Serves 4)

Ingredients:

1 lb. ground beef

1 zucchini – sliced thinly (4 cups), don’t peel

1 8-oz. can tomato sauce

¼ tsp. salt

¼ tsp. tabasco

½ tsp. sugar

1 tsp. Worcestershire sauce

2 onions – finely chopped

1 tbsp. butter

4 oz. cream cheese

½ pint sour cream (1 cup)

½ cup seasoned breadcrumbs

Grated parmesan cheese

Paprika

Directions:

Brown beef. Stir in tomato sauce, salt, tabasco sauce, sugar, Worcestershire sauce. Cook 5 minutes on low. Stir in onions. Butter 10 x 6 casserole dish. Layer ½ meat, ½ zucchini.

In a bowl, blend cream cheese and sour cream. Spread over the top. Sprinkle with paprika. Cover with breadcrumbs. Sprinkle with parmesan.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 to 40 minutes.

Serve with garlic bread and a side of wide buttered noodles for the carb lovers!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

In a similar way, rigid expectations regarding worship music from “old-school” church members can limit inventive approaches by younger members in creating new, spiritually nurturing worship experiences. On the flip side, however, as contemporary Christian music has become more and more popular over the years, hymns have become less and less prominent in many churches. As such, I suggest that during each worship service, hymns should be included along with the contemporary music to provide a complete benefit to all who have “come to dine”. Granted, as Christians, our whole lives should be a living sacrifice of worship to God, but undoubtedly, praise and thanksgiving through song play a big role. So, let’s “use the blessing of the bounty”: the creative musical talent of our young people along with that of our Christian forefathers to create a biblically sound “entrée” that will provide for all who are partaking.

-Cheri Henderson

“No Need to Stew” Stew

The word “stew” originated from a late 14th century Old French word, “estuver”, meaning “to bathe, to put into hot water”. Later in the early 15th century, the definition was expanded to include “to boil slowly, to cook meat and vegetables by simmering them in liquid”, and in the 17th century, the expression “stew in one’s own juices” was birthed, meaning “to be left to the consequences of one’s actions”.

Collins Dictionary goes on to define some of the “stew” phraseology and explains that when a person “stews”, it means they are angry, upset, agitated, anxious, or alarmed over something or someone. If someone is ”in a stew”, that person is in a difficult situation that causes them to feel worried or upset. And if you “let a person stew”, you deliberately allow them to worry about something for a while, rather than telling them something which would make them feel better.

I, however, have decided not to let you stew over the fact you have no decent “stew” recipe because this is one you will absolutely love!

“No Need to Stew” Stew
(Serves 4)

Ingredients:

1 lb. beef top round roast, cut into 1” chunks
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) salted butter
1 white onion, cut into ¼” pieces
4 carrots, peeled and cut into ¼” pieces
3 celery stalks, cut into ¼” pieces
¼ cup all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon garlic powder
1 tablespoon garlic salt
16 oz. beef broth
14.5 oz. can fire-roasted diced tomatoes
14.4 oz. can old and white corn, undrained
1 large russet potato, scrubbed and cut into ¾” cubes
1 cup frozen peas

Directions:

Lightly season beef with a pinch of salt and pepper. In a large soup pot, heat the butter over medium until melted. Add the beef and sauté until browned on all sides about 10 minutes. Add the onion, carrots, and celery and sauté until vegetable are tender about 10 minutes. Stir in the flour, garlic powder, garlic salt, and 1 teaspoon each of kosher salt and pepper. Cook, stirring for 1 minute.

Add the broth, tomatoes, corn and its liquid, and potato. If necessary, add additional broth to just slightly cover the ingredients. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook until the meat and potatoes are tender, about 90 minutes. Add the frozen peas and simmer, uncovered, until the peas are cooked, but still bright, 5 to 10 minutes.

Ladle into bowls and serve with a side of cornbread if desired.

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

As followers of Jesus Christ, 2 Corinthians 1:3-4 tell us “Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.” As I read this scripture, it reminds me of the mercy and sweet comfort I have experienced through Jesus Christ. What a loving Father I have that He would have given His only begotten Son just for me, knowing that “left to the consequences of my own actions”, I would have perished for eternity. I needed a Savior and by believing in my heart and confessing with my mouth His Son, Jesus Christ, as my Lord and Savior, I shall not perish, but have everlasting life. I am now a child of God and with this privilege comes responsibility. We are not comforted to be comfortable, but to be comforters. We are called to comfort those who are in trouble, not let them “stew in their own juices to be left to the consequences of their actions”. Is there someone you know who is “in a stew” right now? Pull them out … and drench them with the Living Water of Jesus Christ!

–Cheri Henderson

On Guard, Mon Ami!

Folklore suggests Napoleon Bonaparte was the first to taste an omelet when, after travelling across southern France with his army, they decided to rest for the night at an inn near the town of Bessieres. Supposedly the following morning, the innkeeper created and served Bonaparte a fluffy egg concoction and named it the “omelet” in Bonaparte’s honor. “Omelet” or “omelette” is a variation of the French word “amelette” which means the blade of a sword, inspired by its curved, flattened shape. It is thought the omelet was created in recognition of Bonaparte’s successful victories using an unsheathed sword.

Who would have ever guessed an omelet was first created to resemble a sword? So, “on guard”, my friend! Let’s have some breakfast!

Mozzarella, Sweet Onion and Mushroom Omelet (Serves 2)

Ingredients:
4 tablespoons butter
½ of a sweet onion, sliced into thin 2” strips
4 oz. of fresh baby bella mushrooms
6 eggs
4-1/2 oz. of shredded mozzarella

Directions:

Melt 2 tablespoons of butter over medium heat in a small, shallow frying pan. Sauté the sliced onion and mushrooms, stirring often, for approximately 5 minutes until the onion is translucent and tender. Remove the vegetables from the pan and set them aside.

In a small bowl, briskly whisk 3 eggs. In the fry pan, melt another tablespoon of butter over medium heat. Evenly pour the eggs into the pan and after a minute or so when the egg starts to bubble, lay half of the vegetables and 2 oz. of shredded mozzarella on half of the egg mixture. Slowly lift the other half and fold it over onto the vegetables and mozzarella. When the cheese has begun to melt, remove the omelet from the pan and onto a serving plate. Sprinkle with a bit more mozzarella. Cover to retain heat while preparing the second omelet.

Serve with sliced avocado and/or crisp bacon!

FOOD FOR THOUGHT:

Bonaparte is also credited with this interesting quote about the sword: “There are only two forces in the world, the sword and the spirit. In the long run, the sword will always be conquered by the spirit.” Followers of Jesus know that Ephesians 6 explains our need to be covered in spiritual armor, and verse 17 specifically tells us to “take the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.” Hebrews 4:12 says “For the word of God is living and active, sharper than any two-edged sword, piercing to the division of soul and of spirit, of joints and of marrow, and discerning the thoughts and intentions of the heart.”

For most of Napoleon’s life, his personal religious beliefs might best be described as agnostic; however, near the end of his life, Bonaparte offered this commentary about Jesus Christ. “I know men, and I tell you Jesus Christ was not a (mere) man. Superficial minds see a resemblance between Christ and the founders of empires and the gods of other religions. That resemblance does not exist. There is between Christianity and other religions the distance of infinity. Alexander, Caesar, Charlemagne and myself founded empires. But on what did we rest the creations of our genius? Upon sheer force. Jesus Christ alone founded His empire upon love; and at this hour millions of men will die for Him. In every other existence but that of Christ, how many imperfections!

From the first day to the last, He is the same; majestic and simple; infinitely firm and infinitely gentle. He proposes to our faith a series of mysteries and commands with authority that we should believe them, giving no other reason than those tremendous words, ‘I am God.’

The Bible contains a complete series of acts and of historical men to explain time and eternity, such as no other religion has to offer.

If it is not the true religion, one is very excusable in being deceived; for everything in it is grand and worthy of God.

The more I consider the Gospel, the more I am assured that there is nothing there which is not beyond the march of events and above the human mind. Even the impious themselves have never dared to deny the sublimity of the Gospel, which inspires them with a sort of compulsory veneration.

What happiness that Book procures for those who believe it!”

So said Napoleon Bonaparte. To come to these conclusions, he evidently read a bit of the “sword of the Spirit”. The living, active word of God, sharper than any two-edged sword that Napoleon would have ever wielded during his life … pierced him to the division of his soul and spirit. And he recognized the truth of Jesus Christ.

–Cheri Henderson