Hot Cocoa Breakfast Shake

December 16, 2007

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Breakfast in a glass—and is it ever good! SAM

1/2 cup Dutch processed cocoa
1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon cinnamon
Dash of freshly ground nutmeg
4 cups milk, divided
2 cups half-and-half
2 eggs
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Whipped cream or vanilla ice cream for garnish

In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine the cocoa, sugar, and cinnamon. Gradually add 1/2 cup of milk, stirring until smooth. Stir in the remaining 3 1/2 cups milk and the half-and-half. Heat the mixture thoroughly, stirring constantly, but DO NOT BOIL. In a small bowl, beat the eggs lightly with a fork. Temper the eggs by adding very gradually 1/2 cup of the hot cocoa. Stir the egg-cocoa mixture into the hot cocoa and cook over low heat for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and add the vanilla extract. With an electric mixer on high speed, beat the cocoa mixture until frothy. Top with whipped cream or ice cream, if desired.
Makes 7 cups.

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Lemon Muffins

December 15, 2007

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Lemon Muffins for breakfast! Who could ask for anything more? SAM

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter, melted
1 teaspoon lemon zest
4 tablespoons plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice, divided (juice of 2 lemons)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1 (8-ounce) carton lemon yogurt
1 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar

Preheat the oven to 400 degreesF . Grease or line with parchment paper cups of 12 muffin tins. In a medium bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Make a well in the center. In another bowl, whisk together the butter, lemon zest, 4 tablespoons lemon juice, eggs, and yogurt. Pour the butter into the well in the flour mixture and stir with a fork just until moistened. Spoon the batter into the prepared muffin tins and bake for 20 minutes, or until firm in the center and golden. Remove to a wire rack.

In a small saucepan, combine the remaining 2 tablespoons lemon juice and 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar. Bring to a boil and cook for 2 minutes until slightly thickened. Brush the muffins with the lemon glaze and remove from the tin.
Makes 12 muffins.


Whole Wheat Banana Bread

December 14, 2007

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A breakfast bread so packed with flavor and pizzazz you’ll want to make it a permanent part of your morning routine. SAM

1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup vegetable or olive oil
1 egg
2 very ripe bananas, mashed (1 cup)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease and flour an 8 x 4-inch loaf pan and set aside. In a small bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, whole wheat flour, baking soda, and salt. In the bowl of an electric mixer, combine the sugar and oil. Beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add the egg and beat until lemon colored. Reduce speed to low and add the flour mixture alternately with the bananas, beginning and ending with flour, and blending well after each addition. Add the vanilla extract.

Pour the batter into the prepared pan and bake for 45 minutes, or until a wooden pick inserted in the center comes out clean. Remove to a wire rack and cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Remove from the pan and cool completely on the wire rack. Wrap tightly and store in the refrigerator. Bread will be better the second day.
Makes 1 loaf, or 16 servings.


Sausage Quiche

December 13, 2007

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Use whatever peppers you like in this yummy quiche. Really good peppers and spicy sausage will make this a breakfast to remember. SAM

4 ounces Swiss cheese, shredded (1 cup)
1 (9-inch) unbaked pastry shell
1/2 pound bulk pork sausage
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
1 small onion, minced
1 poblano pepper, seeded and finely chopped
1 medium banana pepper, seeded and finely chopped
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 1/2 cups half-and-half
1/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg
Dash of cayenne pepper

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a heavy skillet over medium-high heat, fry the sausage and pepper flakes, draining any excess grease. Add the onion, poblano, and banana pepper and sauté until tender. Layer the cheese in the pastry shell, then the sausage mixture. In a small bowl, combine the eggs, half-and-half, salt, nutmeg, and cayenne pepper and pour over the sausage mixture. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until set. Remove to a wire rack and let stand for 10 minutes before serving.
Makes 6 servings.


Crab Breakfast Pie

December 12, 2007

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This is called ‘breakfast pie’ but the truth is you can eat anytime of the day or night! SAM

4 ounces Swiss cheese, shredded (1 cup)
1 (9-inch) unbaked pastry shell
1 (7 1/2-ounce) can crabmeat, flaked
2 green onions with tops, chopped
3 eggs, lightly beaten
3/4 cup half-and-half
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon ground mace
2 tablespoons finely grated Romano cheese

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees F. Layer the Swiss cheese in the pastry shell and top with crabmeat, then onion. Combine the eggs, half-and-half, lemon zest, mustard, salt, and mace and pour over the onion. Top with Romano cheese. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes or until set. Remove to a wire rack and let stand for 5 minutes before serving.
Makes 4 servings.


Oatmeal Pancakes

December 11, 2007

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Pancakes are the perfect way to tell someone you love them! SAM

1 egg, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 cup buttermilk
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons quick-cooking oats
Butter
Maple syrup, hot

Lightly grease a griddle or iron skillet and heat to medium high. In a large bowl, combine the egg, oil, and buttermilk. In another bowl, combine the flour, soda, salt, and sugar and add to the egg mixture, stirring until just blended. Add the oats. Pour by 1/3 cupfuls onto the prepared griddle. When bubbles form on top, turn the pancakes and cook on the second side until lightly browned. Serve with butter and hot maple syrup.
Makes 10 pancakes.


French Toast Strata

December 10, 2007

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What could be better than French toast casserole, ready to bake the moment you get up. All you have to do is turn on the oven. Well, you might want to heat the maple syrup. This is sublime! SAM

8 (1-inch) slices day-old sour dough bread
4 eggs
1 1/2 cups milk
1/2 cup half-and-half
1 tablespoon confectioner’s sugar plus additional for topping
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon cognac
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
Dash of freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons butter, diced, plus additional for serving
Maple syrup, hot

Butter an 8-inch square baking pan and fill completely with the bread slices. In a medium bowl, beat the eggs with a wire whisk until frothy. Add the milk, half-and-half, confectioner’s sugar, vanilla, cognac, cinnamon, and salt, stirring to blend. Pour the egg mixture over the bread, cover tightly with foil, and refrigerate for 8 to 12 hours.

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Dot the bread mixture with butter and bake, uncovered, for 45 to 50 minutes, until puffed and golden. Remove to a wire rack and sprinkle with confectioner’s sugar. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving with additional butter and hot maple syrup.

Makes 4 servings.