Posts Tagged ‘breakfast’

Clara reminds me of my Granny Sylvia. I wish I had video taped her in the kitchen while she was still with us. Granny loved to serve tea and gingersnaps for company and regularly made bread for daily meals. It might not have been for the love of bread but a habit born out of pure necessity for survival during hard times. Are we any better off in 2014?

This video series is a gem. In some small way I feel connected to my maternal ancestors through the cheerful star of the show. I just want to hug Clara!

And now, I want to bake cookies.


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These are not latkes as you might expect from the title.  These potato cakes are made from leftover mashed potatoes.  I added egg, flour, salt and pepper to the leftover mash, just eyeball until it will hold together.  Fry ’em up in some canola oil and you have yourself a brunch side dish.

Oh.  Never mind that little yellow feller.  He’s a gift from the Grandparents when they visited China.  His feet are hollow to hold chopsticks.  You know, like training wheels!  Big Brother still has troubles with chopsticks, Little Sister just holds one and stabs her food on to the stick.  Forks are always provided but they like to try different things too.  I’ll bet their little prima can use chopsticks blindfolded.  She was born there, in China, and had Chinese nannies for the first year of her life.

Must be cool to have kids abroad.  Oh, wait.  My kids are born abroad!  Nice.

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Remember how I was trying to think of ways to use up my bag of Teff flour?  Well, I did it again.  This time I made muffins with a boost of fiber from the sneaky addition of Teff to the batter.  The neat thing about Teff is that in small portions it is easily incorporated into any recipe with all-purpose flour, including these lemony blueberry muffins.

Look good enough to eat, eh?

Here’s another tip for you… If you are like me and don’t like soggy areas of muffin around the fresh berries, use dried blueberries instead.  Dried berries are always in season and you won’t have to wait for them to thaw.  The best part is no soggy muffins!

  • 1 cup dried blueberry flavoured cranberries
  • zest of 1 lemon
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup Teff flour
  • 1/2 tsp baking soda
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/4 tsp baking powder
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 Tbsp vanilla
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 cup butter
  • 12 paper muffin cups
  • turbino sugar for sprinkling

Note: My typical recipe includes 2 or 3 mashed bananas, the lack of extra moisture should have been more apparent to me.  This recipe would be improved with the addition of a 1/2 cup of plain yogurt or applesauce.  I didn’t have anything else on hand.

Pre heat the oven to 325ºF.

Mix the wet ingredients with the lemon and blueberries and set aside.  Combine the dry ingredients (except the turbino sugar) in a large bowl.  Make a well in the dry mix and pour in the wet mix.  Stir until the flour disappears, the consistency should be lumpy but evenly moist.

Divide the batter between 12 regular sized muffin cups in a metal tin.  These would also be cute as mini muffins for a brunch or coffee table.  Top with about 1/2 tsp of the turbino sugar.  Turbino sugar is coarse and will not completely melt during baking, this leaves a crunchy topping to the muffins.

Bake for 25-30 minutes, rotate the pan half way through.  The middles should be set and the edges lightly golden brown.

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On a whim I bought a bag of Teff Flour.  Well it was more of a curiosity than a whim.  Teff is the smallest grain and contains higher percentages of bran and germ, and coincidentally a good amount of protein with very little gluten.  It is often found in Ethiopian flat bread.  I tried the recipe for peanut butter cookies from the rear of the bag, not the best cookies so they have not grazed the pages of my blog.  Because of that failure, I was feeling stuck with this whole grain flour.

Waffles were a good place to start experimenting.  Waffles can take some punishment in the culinary ring and come out edible.  At least Pepper likes them if the kids won’t touch the Frankenstein waffles.

I substituted 1/4 cup of regular flour for the Teff flour, and otherwise made my regular recipe.  The kids didn’t notice a difference.  I had one waffle and couldn’t fathom a second (as I usually have two, plus Little Sisters’ left overs if there are any).  They were surprisingly light but filling.  An excellent addition to my experiments-gone-right box.

What else could use a little Teff pep?  I’m on to the next idea in the kitchen.

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Just one of those weekends with extra whipped cream begging to be friends with breakfast.

Heavy cream is the best.  I avoid the carbonized cans and frozen hydrogenated oils.  Stick to the good stuff.  No imposters on my waffles please.

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Do you ever get home in a mad, famished state?

That was me today.  A very light lunch consisting of butternut squash soup, frozen from my last batch and saved, and some left over birthday cake for dessert.  By the I was home with the kids bouncing at my sides I needed to fix a quick snack.  Enter the egg McMidnitechef.

Make it simple or fancy with fresh tomato and avocado slices.

Toast some English Muffins.  Sear some black forest ham.  You know, I was thinking about how I used to think that black forest ham meant it was related to the cake.  But that’s not exactly right, now is it?  It occurred to me that this name probably has more to do with the Black Forest in Germany.  Germans love their pig.  And chocolate with cherry liquor.  Um… where was I?

The eggs!

Scramble 1 egg for each McMidnitechef plus one extra, in my case I used 3 large eggs for two servings.  Add some sharp cheddar cheese and let it melt.

Stack tomato slices, ham, avocado, then the cheesy eggs on the warm muffins.  Enjoy with your favorite beverage, I suggest coffee or orange juice.

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It’s Sunday morning.  The autumn sun has barely crept into the kitchen through the French door windows.  Both children are tugging at me in bed.  LEDs illuminate 8:07 on my alarm clock, which is not waking us up during the weekends. Nope, the hungry little ones, including the dog, are quite capable of replacing the clock all together!

Like pixies pulling at Wendy in the night, the children pinch my pajamas and tow forward.

What’s for breakfast Mom?  Waffles, we haven’t had waffles in a while.  That sounds good.

I start pulling out the ingredients from the pantry and have to move a jar of poppy seeds to get the baking powder.  I paused.  Mmmm… you know what would be really yummy right now?  Lemon Poppy seed cake, just like the one from the bake sale.  Baking a cake this early, and for probably just me, wasn’t going to happen.  Instead, I cleverly added the seeds and some lemon zest to half the waffle batter.  The result: Lemon Poppy seed Waffles!  And they soothed my early-morning-crankiness and sudden craving for cake.

Lemon Poppy seed Waffles

Adapted from Better Homes & Garden’s Cookbook

  • 1  3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tbsp baking powder
  • 2 Tbsp poppy seeds
  • 2-3 lemons, zested and juiced
  • 1 tbsp vanilla
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 3/4 cup milk
  • 1/2 cup butter, melted and cooled
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 tsp salt

Mix the flours, sugar, baking powder, salt, seeds, and lemon zest in a large bowl.  Beat the eggs and combine with the milk, vanilla, and butter.  Make a well in the flour and add the egg mixture, stir until combined and all the flour is mixed in.  Let the batter stand while the waffle iron heats up.  Use the appropriate amount of batter to fill the iron, mine can handle about 2/3 cup per round waffle.

Fancy option: lemon glaze.  Take the lemon juice and whisk it with confectioner’s sugar.  Keep adding sugar to get a consistency that you like.  Drizzle over warm waffles.

Busy Mom Tip ~ Freeze extra waffles and on weekday mornings pop one in the toaster for a quick breakfast!

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A surprise breakfast platter, accompanied by a tall iced coffee.  I started out sautéing red onion and chopped cremini mushrooms.  Diced smoked turkey deli meat joined the soft veggies in the pan just moments before whisked eggs are poured in.  I slightly scramble the eggs for two reasons: even distribution of the other goodies, and better texture of the eggs.  Gruyère tops the scramelette and hugs the warm fluffy eggs as it melts.

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Guess you could call this a lazy frittata  It wasn’t finished in the oven under the broiler, I simply put a lid on the pan to melt the cheese and get the eggs to steam to well done (we are serving this to Little Sister after all).  I’m not a huge fan of mushrooms these days, although my mom would tell you otherwise about the younger version of me.  I would devour an entire brown bag before she could put away the groceries.  Mushrooms and canned green beans have fallen out of my go-to ingredient list.  If it weren’t for Hubby, they would both be banned from my kitchen.  But he likes that sort of thing.

For the eggs with ham, mushrooms and cheddar, you will need about an egg and a half per person, diced ham, diced mushrooms and sharp cheddar cheese.  I usually warm up the ham and mushrooms first.  Whisk the eggs in a bowl with a pinch of salt and pepper.  Pour the eggs over the ham and mushrooms, stirring gently, remove from heat.  Top with cheddar (slices or grated) and put a lid on it.  The residual heat should finish cooking the egg and melt the cheese.

This is a part of a wholesome breakfast any day of the week.

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Our Ecuadorian neighbours moved away.  I recalled the time we were invited to breakfast and Pillar made plantain for us.  It was different and potato-like but slightly sweet and appealing for early nosh.

They were great neighbours and Big Brother loved to go say hi every chance he could.

I bought a plantain to try making it for breakfast, as the original dish was now gone along with its maker.  I sliced the firm flesh and fried it in just a swirl of oil.  An egg gave me protein.  Nobody else at the table was too keen on trying the plantain, suited me just fine because I thought they were good.

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