Category Archives: breakfast

I came across this WholeFoods recipe on theKitchn and made it for a bunch of guys from our church group who came over for breakfast one morning. I wasn’t sure if it would taste all that great, since I’ve never used a recipe from WholeFoods, but how can you ever go wrong with gruyere? This was super easy, I was able to prepare the entire casserole the night before and just had to wake up and pop it in the oven of the morning of. Served this with some more morning glory muffins and fruit.

Mushroom, Tomato & Gruyere Breakfast Casserole (makes 8 servings)

  • 4 English muffins, split
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 medium tomatoes, chopped
  • 1 pound button or cremini mushrooms, trimmed and sliced
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 8 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic, minced
  • 1/4 onion, minced
  • 2 teaspoons dried basil
  • 1 cup grated Gruyère cheese

Arrange English muffin halves in the bottom of a greased 9- x 13-inch baking dish, cutting them to fit, if necessary; set aside.

Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add tomatoes, mushrooms, salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender and liquid is thickened, 8 to 10 minutes. Spoon tomato mixture over the top of the English muffins, distributing it evenly; set aside to let cool.

In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, garlic, onion, salt and pepper. Pour evenly over tomato mixture, then sprinkle with basil. Cover and chill overnight.

Set dish aside at room temperature for 1 hour and preheat oven to 350°F. Sprinkle casserole with cheese and bake, uncovered, until puffed, cooked through and cheese is golden brown, 45 to 50 minutes. Serve immediately.


Several months ago, I had my first morning glory muffin from Grey Dog. I had never even knew that such a thing existed, and ever since, haven’t been able to stop thinking about making my own. So, right before Memorial Day weekend, I made my first batch. This made a ton of muffins and gave us a good breakfast/snack for over a week.

Morning Glory Muffins

  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/4 cups sugar
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 eggs
  • 3/4 cup applesauce
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 cups grated carrots
  • 1 medium tart apple, peeled and grated
  • 1 (8 ounce) can crushed pineapple, drained
  • 1/2 cup flaked coconut
  • 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1/2 cup chopped walnuts


  1. In a large bowl, combine the first five ingredients. In another bowl, combine the eggs, applesauce, oil and vanilla. Stir in carrots, apple, pineapple, coconut, raisins and nuts.
  2. Fill greased or paper-lined muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake at 350 degrees F for 20-24 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean. Cool for 5 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks.

It’s been a long while, first because I was a lazy cook and then because I was/am a lazy blogger. Well, there are several posts coming your way, starting with this one!

About a month ago we had a few friends stay with us for the weekend (Marcy had her first sleepover!) and for breakfast on Saturday, I made an apple dutch baby. (For those who don’t know, a dutch baby is basically a pancake baked in the oven and it gets all puffed up once removed from the oven) I liked it so much I made it the following weekend for some friends I invited over for brunch, too.

I added some pecans in this one, too.

Apple Dutch Baby

2 large or 3 medium apples, preferably tart ones like Granny Smith
4 tablespoons white sugar, divided
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/3 cup unsalted butter
1/3 cup dark brown sugar
3/4 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1 cup milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
5 eggs
Powdered or cinnamon sugar, to serve

Heat the oven to 400°F. Peel, core, and quarter the apples, then cut them into medium slices (1/4-inch thick or less). Then cut the slices in halves or thirds. You should have about 3 cups of chopped apples.

In a small bowl, mix 3 tablespoons of sugar with the cinnamon and ginger and set aside.

Cut the butter into chunks and place them in a deep cast iron skillet or 8×8-inch baking dish  (I used a glass pie pan). Put the skillet or baking dish in the oven for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the butter is melted. Take the pan out of the oven and sprinkle the 1/3 cup brown sugar over the melted butter. Carefully spread the apples on top of the brown sugar and sprinkle the cinnamon sugar mixture over the apples. Put the pan back in the oven to caramelize the apples and sugar.

Whisk the flour with the remaining tablespoon of sugar, salt, and nutmeg. Gradually add the milk, whisking constantly with a large wire whisk to beat out any lumps. When the flour is smoothly incorporated into the milk, beat in the vanilla and the eggs one by one. Beat by hand for 2 minutes, or until foamy. Let the batter rest for 5 minutes. By now the sugar should be bubbling around the apples.

Take the pan out of the oven and pour the batter over the apples. Bake for about 20 more minutes or until center is set and sides are lightly browned. The pancake will puff up dramatically but fall after a few minutes after you take it out of the oven.

If you want, serve with powdered sugar or more cinnamon sugar. I usually find that it is just sweet enough as it is.

I made this for a friend’s baby shower. People seemed to like it, but I thought it was just ok. I do like that it’s something different that you can make for a breakfast or brunch, though.

Baked Lemon Challah French Toast with Minted Raspberries

sorry for the blurry iphone pic

For the baked French toast
One 16 to 20-ounce loaf brioche, challah, or other egg-enriched bread
2 lemons, zested and juiced
3 large eggs
1/4 cup brown sugar
3 cups 2% milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1 1/2 cups confectioners’ sugar, plus more for dusting

 For the minted raspberries
12 ounces red raspberries, lightly washed and picked over
1/4 cup dry cava wine, proseccio or other sparkling wine (i actually just used a regular rose wine)
1/4 cup loosely-packed mint leaves

If planning to bake immediately, preheat the oven to 425éF. Grease a 9×13-inch baking dish with nonstick cooking spray or butter.

Slice the bread into 1/2-inch-thick slices, then cut each slice in half. Arrange half of the bread in overlapping layers in the baking dish. Sprinkle the bread with about half of the lemon zest.

Whisk the eggs in a large bowl until well mixed, then whisk in the brown sugar. Whisk in the milk, vanilla, salt, nutmeg, and remaining lemon zest. Pour half of the custard over the bread. Layer the rest of the bread on top, and pour the rest of the custard over to coat. (At this point the casserole can be covered and refrigerated for up to 24 hours.)

When ready to bake, take the casserole out of the refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for at least 10 minutes before baking. Heat the oven to 425°F. Bake the casserole for 30 minutes, or until slightly golden on top, and puffy.

Whisk the lemon juice with the confectioners’ sugar and drizzle the glaze over the hot casserole. Put a few teaspoons of confectioners’ sugar in a small sieve or strainer, and dust the top of the casserole by tapping the strainer lightly over it.

Let the casserole cool for at least 15 minutes before serving. Serve in large slices, with raspberries on the side.

Toss the raspberries, gently, with the wine. Chop the mint leaves very fine and toss with the berries as well. Refrigerate until serving.

Last (as in not yesterday) weekend, we went camping. If you live in New York City, love camping, but don’t have a car may I recommend Malouf’s Mountain, located near Beacon, NY. We were able to bring our rolling cooler on the Metro-North train, then drop it off in the Malouf’s Mountain shuttle, who then dropped the cooler (along with our other bags) directly at our campsite for us — all while we were hiking in to the campsite ourselves with absolutely no luggage to carry!

Thanks to this very convenient system, we were able to easily bring our own supplies and cook meals at our campsite. If you don’t want to bring your own food, you can even purchase food from the campground, itself (so easy!).

How and What We Cooked:

our stove for the weekend

firewood Noah foraged from the forest (you can buy a bundle there, too)

Saturday Lunch – BLT & OC Sandwiches (O=onion, C=cheese)

from Trader Joe's

a yummy BLTOC, thanks mostly to TJ's groceries

Saturday Dinner – Acorn Squash, Steak, Baked Potatoes

It started getting too dark, so there aren’t pictures of everything. 😦 But, it was a really great camping meal!

Noah restarted our fire with leaves drenched in bacon grease (and apparently a giant log)

we cooked the acorn squash right in the fire (along with the baked potatoes, which didn't get photographed)

Acorn squash was Noah’s idea, and what a great idea it was! Because we cooked it directly in the fire, you had to avoid the charred outside, but inside was yum! We seasoned the squash with some of John’s maple syrup (excellent!) and some of our salt-pepper butter (we basically put butter, salt and pepper in a jar and melted it over the fire), also very good.

On the stove: steak, our pre-made salt-pepper butter, and dessert (wrapped in the foil)

The steak was also great, we very rarely cook or eat red meat, and I’ve come to really like just eating it plain, as long as you get good quality meat, it’s delicious.

Dessert – a John & Melissa Surprise!

I liked this dessert so much, it deserves its own section!

John & Melissa brought this down from their campsite above us and threw it on the fire. I had no idea what was inside, but it was a great idea and I was pleasantly surprised.

opening up our surprise

Baked apples with trail mix maple syrup!! Delicious!

Sunday Morning Breakfast – Bacon & Eggs

This breakfast was mostly just to use up what we had leftover. We had brought eggs to make steak and eggs the night before, but forgot about the eggs. And, we still had bacon from our lunch.

using up the rest of our bacon

The bacon was yummy (as usual). And then the only pan we really had was the skillet, which now had a pretty thick layer of bacon grease. So… Noah created deep-fried eggs. It actually wasn’t so bad, the guys seemed to like it a lot. I ate it, because it was there. But, I don’t think I’d really ever want to make it again. We also threw in random vegetables people had leftover (onions, tomatoes, bell peppers) for deep-frying. We did balance the fattiness of this breakfast with some of our friends’ oatmeal (also from TJ’s).

.... deep fried eggs 🙂

P.S. sorry for the blurriness of that last pic!

At the time of this writing, I am in the midst of making my first Dutch Baby, a really fluffy pancake with more eggs and less flour, that bakes and rises, or soufflés (literally French for to breathe or blow) in the oven. I found my recipe from Molly Wizenberg’s A Homemade Life, which I read from cover to cover pretty quickly. As of right now, the batter is ready, the pan is buttered and I’m just waiting for my husband and our friend visiting from Seattle to wake up so I can put it in the oven and we can enjoy yummy, fresh-out-of-the-oven goodness.

Not sure where the name comes from (is it really Dutch?), but a typical “Baby” is baked in a cast-iron skillet (which we have, but it’s dirty from last weekend’s camping trip). Today I am using a glass pie pan instead, but you can also use a metal or Pyrex cake or pie pan. And again, I’m using our white whole wheat flour, and I substituted whole milk for half-and-half. Also, I decided to experiment and add blueberries and pecans to one half of the Baby. Hopefully, it’ll turn out well!


2 T unsalted butter
4 large eggs
1/2 c unbleached all-purpose flour
1/2 c milk
1/4 t salt

For the topping:
freshly squeezed lemon juice
Powdered sugar


1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees. Put the butter in an 8-inch cast-iron skillet and place over low heat. Alternatively, put the butter in a similarly sized cake pan or pie plate and place it in the preheated oven for a few minutes. As the butter melts, use a pastry brush to coax it up the sides of the skillet or pan.

2. Meanwhile in a blender or food processor, mix together the eggs, flour and half-and-half, and salt until well blended.

3. Pour the egg mixture into the warmed skillet. Slide into the oven, and bake for 18-25 minutes. The mixture will rise and puff around the edges, like a bowl-shaped soufflé. The Dutch baby is ready when the center looks set and edges are nicely risen and golden brown.

4. Remove from the oven. Drizzle — or splash, really; abundance is good here — with lemon juice and sprinkle generously with powdered sugar (I’m thinking of using granulated sugar for texture. Lemon and sugar crepes are my fave). Serve immediately.

Update: Looking good! The blueberry side of the pan didn’t quite puff up, but it was still cooked and tasted great. Next time I would add some vanilla and perhaps some cinnamon to the batter for a little more umph to the dish, but it was still great regardless.

We also had quite a nice breakfast spread. Kelvin came with concord grapes, Fuji apple cider and Irish bacon (grilled in the cast iron pan). A filling, but not too heavy meal. Best breakfast I’ve had in awhile, maybe even ever?

This was Sunday and Monday’s breakfast. Not the prettiest thing in the world, nor the tastiest, but I was able to use up almost all the rest of the produce in the fridge, basically scallions, in preparation for a a bounty we’re getting from the local CSA. Our friends are out of town and we volunteered to take their share of locally farmed produce for the week. SO EXCITED (that I am cleaning out our fridge for this)! I already invited friends over for dinner on Wednesday to help us eat it all before we go out of town on Friday.

Anyway, back to the omelette. This is just a simple omelette with scallions, and then I added some soy sauce, furikake and cholula sauce on top. A decent  breakfast, but it really made me miss the Taiwanese scallion and turnip omelette my dad always makes. Yummm… If only we stored dried turnip in our pantry like my parents. OrI geuss this just means I’ll be bringing some home from their house after our trip. 🙂