Category Archives: Breakfast

Healthy Mini Muffins for Kids (or Anyone!)

Back in the fall when I was looking for more ways to use up the overload of squash from my CSA, I started baking with it. Using an old recipe of my mom’s for Pumpkin Apple Streusel muffins as a base, I thought I would swap the pumpkin for squash. But why stop there? So I started subbing ingredients to see how I could sneak in more veggies and make the muffins healthier. Some carrots here, some flax seeds there, some raisins for even more texture.

mini-muffins2
Every time I made them my 2 1/2 year old, who can be hit-or-miss on squash and carrots, gobbled them up. This weekend, he told me he wanted to make muffins so I took on the final frontier – reducing the amount of refined sugar. In my first attempt at messing with a staple baking ingredient, I cut the original amount of sugar in half and replaced the other cup with unsweetened applesauce and added an extra 1/2 C of flour to balance out the extra moisture.

Results? Success. The texture was exactly the same as the original version and although the muffins themselves are less sweet, I actually prefer it that way. Plus, it still passed the toddler test of requesting seconds.
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Fruit & Veggie Packed Mini Muffins
makes 4 1/2 dozen mini muffins
2 eggs
1 C sugar
1/2 C vegetable oil
1 C applesauce (unsweetened/no sugar added kind)
1 C steamed and pureed winter squash (butternut or acorn work well)
3 C flour
1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 Tbsp ground flax seeds
1 C shredded carrots
1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled and shredded
2/3 C raisins

Preheat oven to 350. In a large mixing bowl, beat together oil, eggs and pureed squash until combined. Beat in sugar and applesauce. Beat in pumpkin pie spice, baking soda, salt and flax seeds. Add flour, one cup at a time, mixing well for even texture. Fold in carrots, apples and raisins.

Lightly spray mini muffin baking tin with cooking spray. Spoon batter into baking tin so that each cup is 3/4 or slightly more full of batter. Bake for 12 minutes or until toothpick comes clean.

mini-muffins
katie

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Filed under Breakfast, Healthy, Kid Friendly

Almond Peach Butter

Thanks to the wonderful folks at Sweet Preservation.com and the Washington State Fruit Commission, a large, gorgeous box of fuzzy, juicy peaches showed up at our doorstep. These peaches had us drooling and ready to can. We decided to use these Northwestern grown beauties to create an Almond Peach Butter. Pure in its peach form, a peach butter does not, in fact, include butter. Peaches are cooked down to a smooth form and lightly sweetened, preserving the delicate flavors of the fruit.

Washington State Peaches

This butter is a great concoction to can. For canning and preserving tips, click to our Preserving and Canning 101 link. If you do not have the resources, space or time to can, you can shrink this recipe down and toss the butter in a jar or container. It will keep in the refrigerator for 2-3 weeks.

Almond Peach Butter

Almond Peach Butter
Makes about 5-6 cups

14-16 medium-large sized peaches (about 4 lbs)
1 C water
1 3/4 C sugar
2 TBSP pure almond extract

Wash, peel and cut peaches into chunks. Put in large stock pot and add water. Heat until peaches are very soft, about 20 minutes. Using an immersion blender (or a food processor or blender if you don’t have an immersion blender), blend the peaches to a smooth consistency.

Add sugar and almond extract and simmer for 50-60 minutes, stirring every five minutes or so to make sure nothing sticks to the bottom. When the mixture is done, it will remain rounded on top of the spoon for a minute. You can also drizzle a line of the peach butter across the top of the pot. The line of mixture should keep it’s form. You can choose the thickness depending upon your liking.

If you are canning, immediately divide the peach butter amongst the jars and follow your canning instructions. If you are not preserving, allow to cool before placing in a jar or container and refrigerate.

Almond Peach Butter via Haute Apple Pie

This Almond Peach Butter is delicious on toast, an english muffin or a scone. It is a great addition to oatmeal, making it taste like a little bowl of peach cobbler. It is also a great J for a PBJ. We are also experimenting with sandwich spread, bars and other treats!

theLadies

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Filed under Breakfast, Cook, Sides, Treats

Pumpkin Apple Streusel Muffins

With the holidays just around the corner, I’m still hanging onto the last little bits of fall. Let’s face it, as soon as it slips away it’s going to be awhile before us cold climate people see signs of outdoor life again without freezing our fingers off.

As an homage to all the best fall flavors, I’m sharing these Pumpkin Apple Streusel muffins that my mom used to make for us as kids. Consider them tasty little bites of autumn that you can bust out when the winter blues set in…or just for every weekend prior.

Pumpkin Apple Streusel Muffins
2 1/2 C flour
2 C sugar
1 Tbsp pumpkin pie spice
1 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp salt
2 eggs
1 C pumpkin
1/2 C vegetable oil
2 C peeled, finely chopped apples

Preheat over to 350. In a large bowl, combine eggs, pumpkin and oil. Beat in dry ingredients, working in flour and sugar one cup at a time. Stir until batter is fully mixed. Using a spatula, fold in apples. Spoon batter into paper lined muffin cups, filling about 3/4 full.

Streusel Topping
2 Tbsp flour
1/4 C sugar
3/4 tsp cinnamon
5 Tbsp butter

In a small bowl, combine flour, sugar and cinnamon. Cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle on top of batter in each muffin cup. Bake for 25-30 minutes.


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Filed under Breakfast, Kid Friendly

Healthy Carrot Cake Muffins

It is no secret that I love to bake muffins. Who doesn’t love a fresh warm muffin with their morning coffee? Adding veggies to muffins is a great way to get those required veggies into your diet (or your toddler).

I decided to mix it up this time and make it an inside out piece of carrot cake. It is a lightened up recipe, using a mixture of whole wheat and all-purpose flour, golden raisins, oats, carrots, yogurt and applesauce. Using substitutes like applesauce and yogurt creates gives the muffins a nice, sweetened taste and moist texture. However, the consistency of these muffins will be a little chewier than a fluffy oil, flour and butter muffin.

These muffins would be just fine without the frosting middle, but for a little extra fun and a tiny bit of effort (and calories) it is well worth it!

Carrot Cake Muffins
1 C shredded carrot (about 2-3 medium-sized carrots)
1/2 C rolled oats
1/2 golden raisins, chopped
1/2 C whole wheat flour
3/4 C all-purpose flour
1/2 C brown sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp baking soda
1/2 tsp cinnamon
2 eggs
1/2 C applesauce
1/2 C plain yogurt (regular or Greek-style)
1 tsp vanilla
1 tsp lemon zest
1 8 oz package 1/3 less fat cream cheese, softened
2/3 C powdered sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Mix flour, brown sugar, baking powder, salt, baking soda and cinnamon in a large mixing bowl. Add oats and raisins until combined. Set aside.

With an electric mixer, whisk eggs, applesauce, yogurt and vanilla. By hand, add carrots and lemon zest. Mix until combined.

Fold wet mixture into dry mixture until just combined.

With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and powdered sugar until fluffy.

In a greased muffin pan, add one tablespoon of batter to each cup. Top with about one teaspoon of cream cheese frosting. Top with another tablespoon of batter. You will likely have a little bit of frosting left over.

Bake in oven for 30 minutes, turning pan half way through. Remove from oven and cool slightly on cooling rack.

Go ahead and sneak one right out of the oven, they are delicious warm!

Enjoy some more sweet and savory carrot recipes from these fabulous bloggers as part of Food Network’s Fall Fest!

Feed Me PhoebeRoot Vegetable and Black Bean Chili
Napa Farmhouse 1885Roasted Carrots With Chile and Agave
And Love It TooVegan Carrot Cake Coconut Macaroons
Virtually HomemadeThe Silver Palate’s Carrot Orange Soup
From My Corner of SaratogaCopper Pennies aka Glazed Carrots
The Heritage CookMaple Roasted Carrots, Apples and Onions
Made By MichelleCarrots and Caramelized Onions
Thursday Night DinnerBraised Carrots
HGTV GardensGarden-to-Table: Carrots
FN DishBest Carrot Sides for Thanksgiving

 

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Filed under Breakfast, Healthy, Kid Friendly, Treats

Pumpkin Pancakes with Creamy Cinnamon Maple Syrup

I found over the years that there are many dishes, be they breakfast, dinner or dessert, where pumpkin can be snuck in to give it a little fall kick. One of my favorites are these easy pumpkin pancakes. With a little extra doctoring on a boxed pancake mix (or make your own pancake mix if you are feeling up to it), you can create a savory and sweet, warm fall breakfast. You can use a boxed mix that just adds water or one where you add milk and eggs. Whatever you have on hand will work just great.

Regular syrup tastes just fine on these fall flapjacks, but this extra trick with maple syrup takes them up a notch. The syrup was inspired by a creamy maple syrup I had at the most delicious Pancake Pantry in Nashville this past spring. I tried it once and had to have it again!

Pumpkin Pancakes with Creamy Cinnamon Maple Syrup
1 C boxed pancake mix
Mix-ins for pancake mix (see box for instructions, they all vary)
3-4 TBSP extra liquid (water or milk)
1/2 C pureed pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/4 tsp ginger
Cinnamon and powdered sugar for dusting.

Preheat griddle to high heat.

In a spouted mixing bowl, mix pancake mix and other mix-ins according to box directions. Add pumpkin and spices, whisk until smooth. Most likely, your batter may look a little too thick. Add 3-4 TBSP of liquid (water or milk, depending on what you started with).

Spray griddle with cooking spray. Pour batter onto griddle, varying in size depending on the size you desire. When the pancakes start to crisp at the edge and little bubbles form over the top, flip over. When heated through, remove from heat.

Creamy Cinnamon Maple Syrup
1/2 C maple syrup
2 TBSP heavy cream
dash of cinnamon

In a small saucepan, heat syrup over medium high heat. Once heated through (not boiling), add cream and whisk. Heat, stirring occasionally, until heated through about 4-5 minutes. Add a dash of cinnamon and whisk. Serve warm over pancakes.

With a little extra dash of cinnamon, if desired, and a dash of powdered sugar, there is no better way to wake up on a crisp and cool fall morning.

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Filed under Breakfast, Cook

Smoked Salmon & Egg Baguettes

Ok so I promise this will be my last salmon post for a little while but when the gettin’ is good it’s just too hard to not experiment. My brother-in-law spent an afternoon smoking some of his fresh catch and passed a little our way so I put it together with some equally bold flavors and texture for a super fast and hearty weeknight meal. I especially love the way the gooey egg yolk binds it all together.


Smoked Salmon Baguettes
1/3 C cream cheese
1/2 tsp dill
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1 bunch asparagus
Drizzle olive oil
1/2 Tbsp butter
2 C smoked salmon
4 eggs, cooked sunny side up
1 large baguette or loaf of french bread, cut into 4 large chunks
cracked black pepper
Kosher salt

In a small bowl, use a spoon to mix together the cream cheese, dill and garlic powder until well blended. Set aside.

Heat a grill pan on medium and place asparagus on the pan. Lightly coat with olive oil just enough to not burn. Cook asparagus for about 4-6 minutes depending on thickness, turning with a tongs until each side is slightly seared and asparagus becomes tender. Season lightly with salt.

Meanwhile, melt butter over medium. Once pan is hot, crack eggs and cook sunny side up (or over easy if you prefer) for approximately 4 minutes. Egg whites should be opaque and the yolk should be just beginning to cook.

While eggs and asparagus are cooking, slice the baguettes and spread the inside generously with cream cheese mixture. Top with several piece of salmon. Once asparagus and eggs are cooked, place asparagus,then the egg on top of the salmon. Finish with freshly cracked black pepper and a pinch of salt.

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Filed under Breakfast, Main Dish, Quick & Easy, Uncategorized

The Perfect Bacon

For my meat-loving readers:

A few years ago, my mother-in-law gave me a tip for cooking bacon that has literally changed my kitchen life. I passed this tip along to family and friends who have, in turn, told me it has changed their lives as well. You may know this or already practice this wonderfully kept secret. If so, feel free to drool over the photos of bacon and move on. If not, pay close attention. Bacon will never be the same.

In the past, I would heat up the old skillet and toss raw bacon into the pan. On most occasions, I would either burn myself on the hot grease, get impatient and end up with soggy bacon and/or spend fifteen minutes scrubbing my stove top and countertop down. Not anymore.

Oven-Cooked Bacon

One package of thick sliced bacon
Aluminum foil

Line a rimmed baking sheet with aluminum foil. Place 6-8 pieces of thick sliced bacon on the baking sheet. Set your oven to 400 degrees and place the bacon in the oven while it is preheating. Cook for 14-16 minutes. Remove from oven and place bacon on a paper towel to remove excess grease.

The bacon will cook as the oven preheats. The grease stays right on the foil which can just be balled up and thrown away. The bacon turns out perfectly crispy, heated evenly throughout. Since you don’t have to wait for the oven to preheat, the bacon will be done before you know it!

Happy bacon eating!

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Filed under Breakfast, Cook, Quick & Easy

Almond Poppyseed Quick Bread

My family has somewhat of an obsession with almond flavored foods. Breads, cheesecake, cookies…we find a way to sneak into all sorts of baked goods. This easy quick bread recipe lets almond be the star and can satisfy a morning sweet tooth or could even be served as a simple dessert. The mini loaves make a great gift for friends as well.

Almond Poppyseed Quick Bread
3 C flour
2 1/2 C sugar
1 1/2 C milk
3 eggs
1 1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 1/2 tsp almond extract
1 1/2 tsp vanilla
1 1/3 C vegetable oil
1 1/2 Tbsp poppyseeds

Preheat oven to 350. In a large bowl, combine flour, sugar, salt, baking powder and poppyseeds with a whisk. Beat in milk, almond and vanilla. Beat in vegetable oil. Beat in eggs and mix well, for approximately 2 minutes. Pour batter into two greased loaf pans or 4-5 mini loaf pans. Bake regular loaves for 60-65 min or mini loaves for about 45 min. Let cool.

Glaze (optional)
1 C powdered sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp almond extract
1/4 C orange juice

In a small bowl, whisk together all ingredients. Drizzle glaze over top of loaves and let set for at least 1 hour before cutting.

Loaves can be wrapped in foil and placed in a zipper freezer bag and frozen if you don’t plan on eating them within a day or so.

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Filed under Breakfast, Treats

Apple Dumplings

If you have ever visited The Pioneer Woman’s webiste, then you know she whips up some pretty amazing and decadent dishes.  Her Apple Dumplings are one of my favorite recipes to make.  Then are so sweet, easy to make and use some surprising ingredients.  I like serving them for dessert with vanilla ice cream, but have been know to eat them for breakfast as well.

Apple Dumplings

2 sticks butter
1 tsp vanilla
1-1/2 cups sugar
2 tubes crescent rolls
2 granny smith apples
12 ounces of Mountain Dew
Dash of Cinnamon

Grease a 9×13 pan and set aside. Peel, core and slice the apples into 8 slices each. Unroll the crescent rolls and wrap each apple lice slice in a crescent dough triangle and place in the prepared pan.

In a bowl, melt your butter and stir in sugar and vanilla. Mixture will remain grainy. Pour over top of the crescent wrapped apples. Pour the can of Mountain Dew all around and sprinkle with cinnamon. Place in 350 degree oven for 30 to 40 minutes.

I dare you to eat just one!

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Sausage Mushroom Strata

Since eggs go hand-in-hand with yesterday’s Easter holiday, it seemed timely to post about a family favorite egg dish, Sausage Egg Strata or “Egg Bake” as we called it as kids. This is a hearty, easy breakfast dish that easily serves a crowd. It’s prepared the night before and simply tossed in the oven, making it a good pick for family holiday events or brunches…which at my house usually involve a lot of last minute running around the Morning Of.

The Sausage Mushroom version is kind of “the original recipe” but we’ve subbed in various vegetables and breakfast meats over the years. Bacon and red peppers or ham and asparagus would be equally delicious combos!

Sausage Mushroom Strata
Serves 8-12
8-10 thick slices of good white bread, cubed
1 lb breakfast sausage links (or substitute ham steak, cubed), sliced into bite-size pieces
3/4 lb sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
1/2 onion, minced
1 pkg baby bella mushrooms, finely chopped (optional)
8 eggs
2 1/2 C milk
1 C half & half
2 tsp stone ground mustard or brown mustard
1/2 tsp kosher salt
4 Tbsp butter, thinly sliced
1/2 Tbsp worcestershire
1 1/2 tsp dill
1 tsp black pepper

Preheat oven to 325. Lightly grease a 9×13 glass baking pan with butter. Slice bread into small cubes, a bit larger than a dice. If using sausage links, cook links in a saute pan according to instructions on the package until links are cooked through and have a nice crisp crust. Slice each link into small pieces. If using ham steak, simply slice steak into small cubes.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl, beat together eggs, milk and half and half. Whisk in mustard, salt, worcestershire, dill and pepper. Set aside.

Spread bread cubes into greased pan. Mix in meat and smooth out to create an even layer of filling. Pour egg mixture over bread and meat. Top evenly with thin slices of butter. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

In the morning, let stand at room temp for 1 hour, then bake uncovered for 1 hour.

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