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Posts Tagged ‘brunch recipe’

Baked Croissant Cinnamon French Toast Croissants should never go to waste. Not ever. Not even when they are stale. Turning stale croissants into delicious French toast or bread pudding is the ultimate in food upcycling. In this recipe, chunks of croissants soak in an egg-milk-yogurt mixture and then are covered with a cinnamon streusel. After one bite of this moist French toast and its crunchy topping, you’ll find yourself buying croissants just so they can go stale.

Baked Croissant Cinnamon French Toast
Recipe adapted by Pinch of Yum from The Pioneer Woman

INGREDIENTS
Bread Pudding
3 large or 6 small stale croissants
3 eggs
¾ cup milk
3 tablespoons Greek yogurt
¼ cup sugar
½ tablespoon vanilla extract

Streusel Topping
3 tablespoons flour
¼ cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Pinch of salt
3 tablespoons cold butter, cut into small pieces

DIRECTIONS
1. Grease a small baking pan with butter. Tear the croissants into small pieces and place in the dish.

2. Whisk the eggs, milk, yogurt, sugar, and vanilla. Pour evenly over bread. Cover and refrigerate overnight in the fridge (or for a few hours if you are short on time).

3. For the topping, mix flour, brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Cut the cold butter in with a food processor, a pastry cutter, or your fingers until the mixture resembles small crumbs.

4. An hour before serving, preheat oven to 350°F. Sprinkle crumb mixture over the top of the croissant/egg mixture in the pan. Bake for 30 to 45 minutes depending on how soft/crispy you want it to be. Make sure the French toast is fully cooked before you remove it from the oven – usually the top looks done before the inside is really done.

5. Top with butter and drizzle with maple syrup.

Serves approximately 6

LINNELL’S NOTES
1. I used 6 small croissants that I had on hand.

2. I also used lowfat milk and no-fat Greek yogurt with delicious results.

3. For some reason, the consistency of my streusel was a bit off, not as crumbly as I wanted. I added a touch more flour to the mixture to make it more crumbly.

4. French toast and bread pudding are very similar, so this recipe could be served as a dessert too.

Enjoy!

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Savory Brunch Muffins 12 – 1 = 11. But in the world of muffins, 12 muffins – 1 muffin = 1 very happy tummy. Combine traditional brunch ingredients – eggs, smoked salmon, and fresh dill – and present them in a delightful and portable manner. These muffins, topped with crunchy and salty potato chips, make for one fabulous brunch-to-go, or serve them hot at your next brunch gathering.

Savory Brunch Muffins
Better Homes and Gardens

INGREDIENTS
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 Tbsp. sugar
1½ tsp. baking powder
1/2 tsp. baking soda
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup buttermilk
1/2 cup sour cream
2 eggs
3 Tbsp. butter, melted
2 Tbsp. snipped fresh dill
2 oz. lox-style smoked salmon, chopped
2 hard-cooked eggs, peeled and chopped
1 cup wavy potato chips, crushed

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat oven to 400°F. Grease twelve 2½-inch muffin cups or line with parchment paper squares; set aside.

2. In a large bowl stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Make a well in center of flour mixture; set aside.

3. In a 2-cup measure whisk together buttermilk, sour cream, eggs, butter, and dill; add to flour mixture. Stir just until moistened (batter should be lumpy). Gently fold in salmon and chopped eggs.

4. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups, filling each three-fourths full. Sprinkle crushed potato chips over batter in cups.

5. Bake 15 minutes or until golden-brown. Cool in cups on wire rack 5 minutes.

Makes 12 servings

LINNELL’S NOTES
1. I cut parchment paper into roughly 5-inch by 5-inch squares. Try not to get any batter on the paper when filling the cups. After baking, any batter stuck to the paper will appear as dark brown spots. This is not the worst thing in the world, but it will look a little messy.

2. Place the potato chips in a plastic bag and crush with your fingers. Some of the potato chips should be slightly pressed into the batter or else they will all fall off after baking.

3. Don’t overbake these muffins or they will be dry.

4. The next time I make these I will add a pinch of black pepper and some snipped chives or chopped green onions to the batter to enhance their flavor.

5. Because of the salty potato chips and smoked salmon, there is not a lot of additional salt added to the batter. If you like your food saltier, cautiously add more salt only after you have determined the degree of saltiness of the salmon and potato chips you are using. Not all smoked salmon or potato chips have the same amount of sodium.

Enjoy!

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Jammers: Biscuits Topped with JamImagine the smell of homemade biscuits wafting throughout your home in the early hours of the morning. You wake up early, before everyone else, because you enjoy the peace and calm of your empty kitchen. The timer rings and you take a tray of jammers, large buttery biscuits topped with jam, out of the oven. You restrain yourself from taking a bite into one, because you know that they will reach perfection in about five minutes. That gives you just enough time to brew a mug of coffee or steep a cup of tea. You eye the clock as five minutes turns into an eternity. Finally, you sit down with your hot brew and stare at the plate of jammers. You carefully select the largest one that has the biggest glob of jam on top. And after only one bite, pure delight spreads across your face as the crunchy exterior yields to the soft flaky interior. Ah, there’s no better way to start the day than with a hot jammer!

Grand Central Bakery Jammers
The Grand Central Baking Cookbook

INGREDIENTS
4 cups (1 pound, 4 ounces) all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1½ teaspoons salt
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 cup (8 ounces, or 2 sticks) cold unsalted butter
1¼ to 1½ cups (10 to 12 fluid ounces) buttermilk
About 3/4 cup good quality preserves or jam

DIRECTIONS
1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease a baking sheet or line it with parchment paper.

2. Measure the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda into a bowl with high sides or the bowl of a stand mixer and whisk to combine.

3. Dice the butter into 1/2-inch cubes. Use your hands or the paddle attachment of the stand mixer on low speed to blend the butter into the dry ingredients until the texture of the flour changes from silky to mealy. There should still be dime- to quarter-size pieces of butter remaining. If you’re preparing the dough the night before, cover the bowl with plastic wrap and chill overnight; otherwise proceed with the recipe.

4. Make a well in the flour mixture and pour 1 cup of the buttermilk in one addition. Gently mix the dough just until it comes together; it will look rough. Scrape the dough from the sides and bottom of the bowl, then add another 1/4 cup buttermilk and mix again to incorporate any floury scraps. The majority of the dough will come together, on the paddle if you are using a stand mixer. Stop mixing while there are still visible chunks of butter and floury patches. The dough should come out of the bowl in 2 to 3 large, messy clumps, leaving only some small scraps and flour around the sides of the bowl. If the dough is visibly dry and crumbly, add up to 1/4 cup more buttermilk, 1 tablespoon at a time, mixing no more than one rotation after each addition.

5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface. Use the heels and sides of your palms to gather the dough and gently pat it into an oblong shape 1½ to 2 inches thick. It won’t look smooth or particularly cohesive; that’s okay. Use a biscuit cutter to cut jammers into circles at least 2½ inches in diameter. Layer the leftover scraps on top of one another and gently pat them out to a thickness of 1½ to 2 inches and again cut into circles.

6. Use you thumb to make an indentation the size of a fifty-cent piece in the middle of each biscuit. While gently supporting the outside edge of the biscuit with your fingers, use your thumb to create a bulb-shaped hole that’s a bit wider at the bottom and that goes almost to the bottom of the biscuit (think pinch pot). Try to apply as little pressure as possible to the outside of the biscuit, to avoid smashing the layers, which are the key to flaky jammers.

7. Fill each indentation with 1 tablespoon of jam and put jammers on the prepared baking sheet with 1½ inches between them.

8. Bake for 35 to 40 minutes, rotating pan halfway through the baking time. The jammers should be a deep golden brown.

Makes 10 to 12 jammers

LINNELL’S NOTES
1. These are very large biscuits! I was only able to make 8 biscuits from the recipe.

2. The key to achieving a flaky biscuit is to keep the butter cold and to avoid overworking the dough.

3. I baked my jammers for 35 minutes in a convection oven and they were done perfectly.

ENJOY!

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Some people sing in the shower. I sing in the kitchen. So if you happened to walk past my house one morning last week, you might have heard a very off-tune version of this Baha Men’s song:

You put the lime in the coconut and drink it all up
Put the lime in the coconut and drink it all up
You put the lime in the coconut and drink it all up
Put the lime in the coconut; you’re such a silly one
You put the lime in the coconut and drink ’em both together

I couldn’t help but sing and bust a few “unique” moves as I whipped up a loaf of moist coconut banana bread. What a great combination of flavors: coconut, banana, rum, and lime. Don’t forget the rum, because, take it from me, it makes you sing and dance better!

Coconut Banana Bread With Lime Glaze
Recipe from Cooking Light, September 2003

Ingredients:
2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup butter, softened
2 large eggs
1½ cups mashed ripe banana (about 3 bananas)
1/4 cup plain low-fat yogurt
3 tablespoons dark rum
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/2 cup flaked sweetened coconut
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon flaked sweetened coconut
1/2 cup powdered sugar
1½ tablespoons fresh lime or lemon juice

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

2. Lightly spoon the flour into dry measuring cups, and level with a knife. Combine the flour, baking soda, and salt, stirring with a whisk to combine.

3. Place granulated sugar and butter in a large bowl; beat with a mixer at medium speed until well blended (about 1 minute). Add the eggs, one at a time, beating well after each addition.

4. Add banana, yogurt, rum, and vanilla; beat until blended.

5. Add flour mixture; beat at low speed just until moist.

6. Stir in 1/2 cup coconut. Spoon batter into a 9 x 5-inch loaf pan coated with cooking spray; sprinkle with 1 tablespoon coconut.

7. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean.

8. Cool 10 minutes in pan on a wire rack; remove from pan.

9. Combine powdered sugar and juice, stirring with a whisk; drizzle over warm bread. Cool bread completely on a wire rack.

Yield: 1 loaf, 16 servings

Linnell’s Notes:
This bread was moist and flavorful, but the next time I make it I will be sure to have all the correct ingredients on hand to see how the bread should really taste. I used light rum instead of dark. The dark rum would have probably added a fuller flavor to the bread. I did not have plain yogurt on hand either, so I substituted vanilla-flavored yogurt and omitted the vanilla extract. I’m not sure that this substitution altered the taste very much. I also replaced the 1 cup of sugar with Splenda just to see if I could cut back on the amount of sugar. It turned out fine.

ENJOY!

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Spinach-Shiitake Bread Pudding

The only thing keeping me from eating a whole delicious serving of this savory bread pudding is that tomorrow morning I get weighed and measured by my trainer, as I creep towards my fitness goal. Nothing too indulgent can pass through my lips today and this bread pudding, with sourdough bread soaked in a rich egg custard, interspersed with a sautéed leek-spinach-mushroom mixture, and tossed with two different kinds of cheese, definitely qualifies as indulgent. The few bites I tasted today had me wanting more and tempted me to not care about my training progress, until I remembered that breakfast is after weigh-in. Guess what I’m having for breakfast? As Scarlett O’Hara once said, “Tomorrow is another day.”

Spinach-Shiitake Bread Pudding
Recipe by Jean-Georges Vongerichten

Ingredients:
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, plus more for brushing
2 medium shallots, minced
1 leek, white and tender green, cut into 2-inch julienne strips
1/2 pound shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, caps coarsely chopped
Salt and freshly ground pepper
One 5-ounce bag baby spinach
One 1-pound round loaf of sourdough bread, crusts removed, bread cut into-1-inch cubes
2 cups shredded Swiss cheese
1 cup grated Parmesan cheese
2 large eggs
1½ cups milk
1½ cups heavy cream

Directions:
1. In a medium skillet, melt 2 tablespoons of the butter. Add the shallots and leek and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until softened, about 4 minutes. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat until lightly browned, about 7 minutes; transfer to a large bowl.

2. Melt the remaining 1 tablespoon of butter in the skillet. Add the spinach and cook, tossing, until wilted, about 1 minute. Add the spinach to the mushrooms with the bread, Swiss cheese and 1/2 cup of the Parmesan and toss.

3. Beat the eggs in a small bowl. In a saucepan, bring the milk and cream to a boil, then gradually whisk into the eggs. Stir the custard into the bread and let stand, stirring occasionally, until absorbed, about 15 minutes.

4. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. and butter eight 3/4-cup ramekins and set them on a baking sheet. Spoon the pudding into the ramekins and bake for 20 minutes, or until browned. Let cool for 15 minutes.

5. Preheat the broiler. Turn the bread puddings out onto an ovenproof platter. Sprinkle with the remaining 1/2 cup of Parmesan and broil for about 30 seconds, or until golden brown. Serve hot. Spinach-Shiitake Bread Pudding

Serves 8

Linnell’s Notes:
1. Note that both the Parmesan cheese and butter have divided use.

2. It’s always easier to cut bread with a serrated knife. I cut the bread into 1-inch slices first and then removed the crust from each slice. Don’t throw away the bread crusts – throw them in the food processor and make bread crumbs!

3. Be sure to whisk in a tiny amount of the hot milk-cream mixture into the eggs to temper the eggs. If you don’t add small amounts of the hot liquid at a time, you run the chance of cooking the eggs – too much heat all at once. As the eggs gradually adjust to the temperature, you can add larger amounts of the hot liquid.

4. Although this is meant to be a side dish, for those who want to make it heartier and serve it as a brunch item, a little diced ham could be added.

ENJOY!

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“Mom’s going to love these,” I thought to myself as I whipped up a batch of French Breakfast Puffs. Cinnamon-sugar coats tender, buttery mounds of baked perfection. Although their exteriors are golden, one bite gives way to a moist and tender muffin-like texture. I know my mom will really enjoy nibbling on these while sipping her morning coffee. Serve these delicious morsels at any brunch, but why not plan ahead to Mother’s Day?

French Breakfast Puffs
Recipe from The American Country Inn and Bed And Breakfast Cookbook

Ingredients:
1/3 cup shortening, softened
1/2 cup sugar
1 egg
1½ cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
1/2 cup milk
*******************************
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
6 tablespoons butter, melted

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease muffin cups.
2. In a large bowl cream together the shortening, sugar, and egg.
3. In a separate bowl, sift together the flour, baking powder, salt, and nutmeg.
4. Stir flour mixture into the sugar mixture, alternately with the milk.
5. Fill the prepared muffin cups 2/3 full.
6. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, until golden brown.
7. In a small bowl combine the sugar and cinnamon. Roll the warm muffins in melted butter, then in the cinnamon and sugar mixture. Serve hot.

Makes 12 muffins.

Linnell’s Notes:
1. If you don’t like the taste of nutmeg, you can leave it out. One time I accidentally left the nutmeg out and the puffs still tasted great. Nutmeg does lend more depth to the overall flavor, though.

2. I melt one cube of butter (8 T) and always barely have enough to coat all the puffs.

Enjoy!

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When people immigrate to a new country, they often carry with them reminders of their homeland and a few cherished belongings. Old family recipes are both  – cherished and reminders of home. Mary Cannici says of her grandmother’s special cake recipe, “This recipe immigrated to this country from Sicily when Nonna was a little girl and her family came to Ellis Island.” The cake is a wonderful combination of a creamy ricotta cake and an egg-rich pudding. Farina, a finely ground cereal grain with a mild taste, is used as the thickening agent. Serve this versatile and easy-to-make cake with fresh seasonal fruit and you have the perfect dessert for brunch or dinner! Easter and Mother’s Day are just around the corner!

Nonna’s Breakfast and Dessert Farina Cake
Recipe by Mary Cannici

Ingredients:
4 cups whole milk
1¼ cups (8¾ ounces) sugar
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1 cup farina
16 ounces (2 cups) whole-milk ricotta cheese
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
6 large eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Directions:
1. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 350 degrees. Grease 13 by 9-inch baking pan.
2. Bring milk, sugar, and butter to simmer in large saucepan and cook, stirring often, until butter is melted and sugar is dissolved, 1 to 2 minutes.
3. Slowly whisk in farina until smooth.
4. Remove saucepan from heat, stir in ricotta and vanilla.
5. Let mixture cool slightly, then stir in beaten eggs until combined.
6. Scrape batter into prepared pan and smooth top. Sprinkle with cinnamon and bake until toothpick inserted in center comes out clean, about 30 minutes, rotating pan halfway through baking. Let cake cool in pan for 10 minutes, then serve warm.

Serves 15 to 18

Linnell’s Notes:
1. Farina can usually be found in stores that carry natural foods. Sprouts, Whole Foods, and health food stores often carry farina in the bulk bin section. Cream of Wheat is made from farina.

2. Be careful not to add too much of the farina at one time. Add small amounts of it slowly, stirring constantly, to prevent lumps from forming.

3. Although the egg custard flavor is more pronounced when the cake is served warm (after the 10-minute cooling period), it is trickier to serve warm since the texture is like a rough custard. After the cake sits for a while, it firms up and can be cut into squares.

Enjoy!

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