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Archive for the ‘Breakfast’ Category

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A picture from our wedding reception.
© Derek Poore – Table design by Jaclyn Journey – Catering by Mirabelle.

The last year was a pretty major one. I bought a house with the cheese-grater extraordinaire, and we got married. Between packing up our only recently merged life and planning a wedding, blogging was at the bottom of my to-do list.

But 2013 is a new year. While making a list of household goals inspired by Apartment Therapy’s January cure, I started thinking about other goals for the year ahead. This is a short list and includes setting a budget with my sous-chef for life, and to keep up my blog.

I don’t have a cooking experience to share today, but I’m instead presenting a list of recipes that have caught my eye over the last year that I want to make soon. By the way readers, how do you save recipes you see online? I try to either star them in my blog reader, or email them to myself. Sometimes I forget to include the link though… So here’s a list of things I hope to cook in 2013 – maybe you will be inspired to try some too.

North End Cafe’s Eggplant Casserole and Spicy Lentils, from the Courier Journal. I love the Wednesday edition of the Courier-Journal because it includes the food and dining section, which includes reader-requested recipes from area restaurants. I love the North End Cafe for it’s eclectic, tasty menu for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. The Eggplant casserole is my favorite thing to order at the restaurant and is one of my favorite dishes in the city. It is reliably comforting, spicy, and hearty. I was thrilled to see the recipe printed. The Courier also printed one of my requests for a recipe I submitted last year for El Mundo’s spicy black bean dip. I will be making this soon.

In the winter, sometimes I struggle to figure out ways to incorporate fresh fruit into my normal breakfast routines like oatmeal, peanut butter toast, and yogurt. In the summer, it’s easy to top yogurt and with berries and easy to top toast with apples and pears in the fall. This recipe for Winter Citrus Compote for Yogurt or Oatmeal looks like a great way to use citrus fruit as a breakfast topper.

I’ve been wanting to make Snobby Joes – or meat-free sloppy joes for a while. Maybe 2013 will be the year.

I haven’t made biscotti since I tried it one Christmas break when I was in college. I followed a pretty basic recipe for anise-scented biscotti. I don’t like black licorice and did not realize until after I made the cookies that anise tastes like black licorice. This recipe for Cranberry-Pistachio Biscotti looks more promising for my tastes.

Spicy Lentil Wraps with Tahini Sauce – this looks like a great recipe for make-ahead lunches.

We have some CSA beef filets in our freezer. I’d like to make this.

I love this post on making your own birthday cake. I’d like to try making my own birthday cake this year.

I will report back as I check things off my “to-cook” list.

Have a healthy and happy 2013.

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blueberry buckle

If you are looking for the perfect coffee cake to serve to  company for breakfast, look no further. This is it.

As I’ve chronicled before, I love egg-y, savory breakfasts, but my frequent dining companion/roommate/cheese-grater extraordinaire/ beloved doesn’t do eggs. Sometimes coffee cake or pastry-filled breakfasts don’t seem filling enough to me. This hearty, yet-light and fluffy, and utterly flavorful and tasty coffee is filling and goes great with plain or vanilla yogurt. You can make it the night before (important in my mind, if you are serving guests for breakfast), and contains whole grain flours. Plus, it has lots of blueberries. It is fantastic. Oh! It reheats well too and keeps for a couple of days in the refrigerator.

So you really don’t have any reason not to try it.

It will probably come as no surprise that this recipe is from Kim Boyce’s lovely book, Good to the Grain. My mom once told me that you only need to find one great recipe from a cookbook to make it a keeper. This buckle, in addition to soft rye pretzels, ginger peach muffins, and two things I still need to blog – whole wheat chocolate chip cookies and double chocolate cookies… this book is well worth purchasing.

A note on the flours: The original recipe calls for whole-grain pastry flour. I used regular whole wheat flour with no ill-effects. You can find the spelt flour in the health or natural foods section of most grocery stores, or for my local Louisville readers, you can find the spelt flour at Nuts n Stuff,

I hope you enjoy this coffee cake as much my family and friends (and I!) have recently.

“(Blueberry) Huckle Buckle” from Good to the Grain, by Kim Boyce

Streusel Topping

1/2 c. whole-wheat flour

1/2 c. spelt flour

3 T. sugar

1 T. dark brown sugar

1/2 t. baking powder

1/2 t. ground cinnamon

1/4 t. kosher salt

3 T. cold unsalted butter

1 egg

Dry Mix

1 1/4 c. spelt flour

1 c. whole wheat flour

1/2 c. dark brown sugar

1/2 c. sugar

1 T. baking powder

1 t. cinnamon

1 teaspoon kosher salt

1 stick unsalted butter, softened

Wet Mix

3/4 c. whole milk

1/2 c. plain yogurt

4 egg yolks

2 t. vanilla extract

2 c. or so blueberries

Preheat your oven to 350 and butter a 2 1/2 qt. baking dish.

For the streusel topping: mix flours, sugars, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt into a large bowl and stir with a whisk. Cut the 3 tablespoons of cold butter in 1/4” chunks and add them to the mix. Press and rub the mix with your hands breaking the butter in to small bits. Continue until the mix is like cornmeal. Do this quickly.

Whisk the egg and use a spatula to scrape it into the streusel mix. Use your hands to mix the egg in. Squeeze handfuls of dough together. The topping should hazelnut-sized clumps with smaller crumbs mixed in. Set aside.

For the Batter

Mix all the dry mix ingredients into a large bowl and whisk. Add the softened butter and using a hand or a stand mixer, blend on medium speed until combined.

In a separate bowl, whisk the milk, egg yolks and vanilla until well blended.

Pour the milk mixture in with the dry ingredients and blend on low speed until the batter is smooth and creamy.

Pour half of the batter in to your buttered baking dish. Pour a layer of berries onto the batter. Scrape the rest of the batter onto the berries and spread evenly. Sprinkle the rest of the berries on top of the batter and top with the streusel mix. At this point, you can cover the dish and refrigerate overnight.

Bake for 55 to 65 minutes. If the dish was refrigerated overnight, it might take up to 80 minutes to bake. Test with a skewer and make sure it comes out clean.

Let the Buckle cool in the pan before serving.

Enjoy!

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While I’ve spent previous blog posts describing my love of savory breakfasts, recently I’ve been craving the sweet. Well, the sweeter-than-savory kind, particularly scones. There is something about the flaky, buttery, not-too-sweet baked good that makes my mouth water and cravings spike. These scones are perfect for the sweet breakfast craving… particularly the guilt-free pastry craving.

Not-too-sweet, just buttery enough to be tasty, yet filling and wholesome because of the whole wheat flour. These are great. They also freeze really well.

The recipe comes from a book by one of my favorite cooks/ cookbook authors, Melissa Clark. I was drawn to the book because it is about eating what you want while losing weight. Since I love Melissa Clark’s recipes, and have always wondered how she stays so thin, I bought the book. It has a pretty terrible title: The Skinny: How to Fit Into Your Little Black Dress Forever, has a pretty common-sense healthy-eating plan (eat what you want, but not too much of it, include lots of vegetables and exercise), and includes pretty amazing recipes. This is one of them. I’ve made them twice in the last month. The first time I followed the recipe and used dried cherries. The second time I used fresh blueberries. Both were great. So make these, wrap them, and freeze them, and pat yourself on the back for making a delicious and healthful pastries for breakfast.

“Whole Wheat Cherry Scones” from The Skinny: How to Fit Into Your Little Black Dress Forever by Melissa Clark

Makes 12 scones

3/4 c. dried cherries or cranberries, or raisins, roughly chopped (you could also do what I did one time and use fresh blueberries)

2 c. all-purpose flour

1 c. whole wheat flour

1/4 c. sugar

1 T. baking powder

1 t. ground cinnamon

1/2 t. salt

5 T. unsalted butter, cubed

2 large eggs

1/2 c. milk, plus additional for brushing

Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

If using fresh blueberries, skip this part: place the cherries in a sieve and pour boiling water over them. Drain well, transfer the cherries to a bowl and let cool.

In a large bowl combine the flours, sugar, baking powder, cinnamon, and salt. Add the butter.

Using a fork, cut the butter into the dry ingredients until the mixture resembles course crumbs.

Stir in the fruit.

In a separate bowl whisk together the eggs and milk. Pour liquid into the dry ingredients. Stir just until everything comes together. The dough has been really thick when I make and I end up using my hands to mix it all together. Don’t over mix, but make sure there aren’t any dry spots.

Divide the dough into three equal balls. With your palm, flatten each ball into a 5-inch disk.

Slice each disk into quarters using a sharp knife.

Transfer scones to the parchment-lined baking sheet, 1 to 2 inches a part. Brush each scone with some extra milk.

Bake 10 to 15 minutes until scones are golden on top and firm, but not dry. Let cool for 10 minutes before serving.

If freezing, let cool completely.

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Everyone has heard someone say: “Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.” Some heed this advice, some don’t. I for one, never fail to eat breakfast. As my loved ones and close friends will tell you – I can get extremely grumpy when hungry and I try to eat something substantial before heading out the door in the morning. Whether it is something as simple as toast or more elaborate, like these breakfast bars, breakfast for me is a must.

With a little chopping and mixing, these bars come together pretty easily. They are perfect for making on a Sunday morning for yourself and your family and then reheating throughout the week.

This recipe is from the newest addition to my cookbook library: Not Your Mother’s Casseroles, by Faith Durand, the managing editor of theKitchn.com (for other food blog enthusiasts). The book provides a nice collection of things baked in your oven, including breakfast, appetizers, vegetable dishes, meat, beans, grains, and desserts. I’ve made a couple of things now (mushroom casserole with cheese and onions, baked baby onions with Parmesan, and salted caramel walnut slice), all of which will be featured in blog posts eventually. All have been either good or great. I have been deterred by some recipes that require lots of steps or dishes… but some take less time than others.

Here’s the recipe for “oat and raisin breakfast bars” from Faith Durand’s Not Your Mother’s Casseroles

2 1/2 c. old-fashioned rolled oats

1/3 c. brown sugar

3/4 c. raisins

1 apple, cored and chopped

1/2 c. chopped nuts (I used walnuts)

1 t. ground cinnamon

1/2 t. ground ginger

1 t. salt

2 large eggs

3 c. milk

1 t. vanilla extract

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease or spray a 9 X 13 baking dish with oil or cooking  spray.

In a large bowl, combine oats. sugar, raisins, apple, nuts, cinnamon, ginger, and salt.



In a separate bowl, beat eggs well. Stir in milk and vanilla. Add to large bowl with the oat mixture and mix well.

Pour mixture into the prepared baking dish, spreading out the mixture evenly.

Bake 55 to 60 minutes, until the center is set and firm to the touch.

Let cool for at least ten minutes before slicing into long thin bars (cut lengthwise four times, and cut in half width-wise once).

For a convenient breakfast, cut and wrap the bars individually. Then reheat throughout the week.

 


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I’ve written before how much I prefer savory breakfasts with eggs to sweet ones, like pastries and pancakes. I tend to just get hungry again a couple hours after eating pancakes instead of protein-packed eggs.

This recipe, while a baked good, first appealed to me because it is full of good protein, blueberries, and whole grains. It sounded like a filling, tasty breakfast bread. And it is.

I did have some trouble with the printed baking time. Usually I have to cut down on suggested baking times because my oven runs hotter than posted temperatures. However I had to bake this bread about twice as long as the recipe calls for. I’ll put in the original suggested cook time, but be sure to test the bread with a toothpick and plan to cook it a little longer than planned.

“Blueberry and Almond Quick Bread” from Moosewood Restaurant Cooking for Health

Serves 8

1/4 c. vegetable or olive oil

1/4 c. packed brown sugar

2 large eggs

1/4 t. almond extract

1 c. mashed ripe banana or 1 c. unsweetened applesauce

1 c. whole wheat flour

1/2 c. coarsely ground rolled oats

1/4 c. ground flaxseeds

1 t. baking powder

1/2 t. baking soda

1/2 t. salt

1/2 c. coarsely ground almonds

1 c. fresh or frozen blueberries (or 1/2 c. dried)

Preheat the oven to 365 degrees. Oil an 8-inch square baking pan.

In a bowl, by hand, whisk the oil and brown sugar until well blended. Add 1 egg and beat well. Beat in the second egg and add almond extract. Stir in mashed banana or applesauce.

In a separate bowl, stir together the flour, oats, and ground flaxseeds. Stir in the baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix well.

Add the dry ingredients to the egg and oil mixture. Stir until combined. Stir in the almonds and blueberries. Pour into the prepared pan and bake for 25 minutes (may take longer), or until a toothpick or knife inserted into the middle comes out clean. Cool in pan for 10 minutes before serving.

This will keep for a couple of days at room temperature and longer in the refrigerator.

 

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migas

One recent Sunday morning, I found myself alone and wanting a slightly more elaborate breakfast than say, oatmeal or toast.  I remembered a recipe for migas in one of my library cookbooks, a new obsession, and checked the ingredients list. I was glad to see I had everything for this makeshift breakfast and got to work.

This was only the second time I had migas. I ordered them in a Louisville brunch place last spring and was underwhelmed. The eggs were tough and a little bland. The whole thing was really dry too. I did, however, receive delicious hash browns and a biscuit with my meal. These migas, my migas, were much better I am pleased to report. But, unfortunately, did not come with the delicious breakfast sides. These were much healthier, I suppose.

So here is the recipe for Migas, from Moosewood Restaurant Cooking for Health

The original recipe serves 4, I scaled it back for 1  – so I’m providing the ingredients for one serving

1 t. olive oil

1/4 c. diced onion

a pinch of dried oregano

a pinch of red pepper flakes

1 egg

1 T. water

a dash of salt (really, just a little bit, less than a pinch. the chips and cheese listed below are salty)

a bit of black pepper

1/2 c. crushed corn tortilla chips

1/4 c. diced tomatoes – I may have used a little more

2 T. grated cheddar cheese

Warm the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the onions, oregano, pepper flakes and cook. Stir frequently until the onions have begun to soften, about 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, whisk together the eggs, water, salt, and black pepper in a small bowl. Stir in the crushed tortilla chips and set aside.

Add the tomatoes to the onions and continue to cook for 3 minutes or so. Pour the egg mixture in the skillet and stir well.

Reduce the heat to low, cover, and cook until the eggs are mostly set, 3 to 4 minutes. Sit again. Sprinkle the cheese on top, cover, and cook until eggs are completely set, another 3 to 4 minutes.

Eat, preferably with hash browns and a biscuit if you are feeling ambitious. Or just enjoy with coffee, or whatever your morning beverage of choice is.

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southwest potatoes

Whew! It has been a busy few weeks. Between traveling to Baltimore for work, going to various concerts, and prepping for my first big work presentation (given today! and I survived to write this blog….), I have fallen behind a bit on keeping up my cooking posts.

There are three kinds of breakfast people. Those who don’t eat breakfast (which I just don’t understand), those who tend toward more savory breakfasts of eggs, bacon, omelets, etc., and those who tend toward sweet breakfasts, like pancakes and french toast. I tend toward savory breakfasts, and my boyfriend tends toward sweet breakfasts. He’s also egg-averse, which I really don’t understand. This recipe, from the Minimalist – yes, Mark Bittman, AGAIN, was my attempt at finding an egg-free savory breakfast that would please myself and my bf. And oh my goodness, it was great. I bought the small white potatoes at the farmers market. They were so flavorful and creamy on the inside and crispy on the outside. These potatoes, combined with melted cheese and black beans made a wonderful Sunday breakfast, and could also suffice as dinner or lunch.

As Mr. Bittman explains in his article, these do take patience. It is important to cook the potatoes slowly in a pan, and not move them around too much. This is key for developing the nice crisp crust.

This method also works for making fried potatoes of any kind. I made some to go with a tandoori chicken sandwich, which I will be posting in the next week or so. I cooked them the same way but added curry powder in the end. Use your imagination, or just make the recipe below and enjoy a savory, egg-free breakfast.

Southwest Potatoes, from The Minimalist

Yields about 4 servings, or more

2 T. olive oil, or more as needed

2 T. minced fresh jalapeño, or more or less

1 c. or more of  corn kernels, fresh or frozen

Salt and black pepper

2 lbs. new potatoes, peeled and cut into 1-inch chunks, I did not peel my potatoes and they were fine

1/2 to 1 teaspoon chili powder

1 14-oz. can black beans, well drained

1/2 c. or so of grated Cheddar or jack cheese

1/3 c. chopped green onions, for garnish.

Put 1 t. of oil in a large skillet over medium heat. When hot, add jalapeño and corn, and sprinkle with salt and pepper; let sit for a moment. When corn begins to brown, shake pan to distribute for even browning. Remove corn.

Add remaining oil to pan. When hot, add potatoes.

Cook, undisturbed, until they begin to brown around edges, about 10 minutes.

Continue, at least 15 more minutes, turning potatoes to brown all sides without stirring too often. Add oil if needed to prevent sticking, and lower heat if needed to prevent scorching. When potatoes are tender and golden, add chili powder, corn and beans.

Turn on broiler. Place rack about 4 inches below. Transfer potatoes to a baking dish, sprinkle with cheese and run under broiler until cheese is melted and beginning to brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Garnish with green onions.

Eat. Enjoy.

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