breakfast

Christmas Morning Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon RollsOh. Man. I CANNOT wait to tell you about these Christmas morning cinnamon rolls! I am so excited that we will, in fact, be having these Christmas morning! It’s like a present to me. I’ll have to remember to write myself a thank you card…

Cinnamon RollsThis is our first Christmas as a family of 3 and Travis and I decided this year we needed to start some traditions of our own. First of all, we are traveling A LOT over the holidays. Or at least it feels like that. I’m pretty sure it just seems like we’re traveling more than we are because we need to pack a truckload of stuff with us now that we have a little one. Either way, we made it a point to actually be at HOME for Christmas day. I don’t think we’ve ever actually been home for Christmas day as a couple so this will be fun!

Another new tradition is apparently shopping online because we have no time to shop anymore. I’m starting to feel old because I know I’m totally late to this online shopping thing. BUT, with a baby, online shopping is the best thing since sliced bread.


Cinnamon RollsHowever, as Travis and I discussed traditions we pretty much focused most of our attention on food. Doesn’t it always go that direction?? Isn’t it wonderful?? As I thought about past family holidays, I remember the decorations and presents and snow and fun that we had. None of that was lost to me, but what I remember most is gathering around the table with family and enjoying a meal full of love and traditions. So this was like a BIG deal to come up with our own family traditions.

Cinnamon RollsSome of my most cherished holiday memories come back to baking with my grandmas, mom, and sister. Luckily, my family will be doing a little baking when we visit them so that tradition lives on! I still needed to do a little baking of my own though! That’s where these rolls come in. These cinnamon rolls are actually my grandma’s yeast dough recipe (passed down to her from her mom) that we usually would use to make bobalki (another amazing concoction for another day) and poppy seed rolls (like cinnamon rolls, but with poppy seed filling).

All you Slovak or Polish folks know what I’m talking about when I refer to poppy seed in terms of sweet treats. Most people think of the gross dry poppy seeds they find on bagels. No. Just no. This poppy seed filling I refer to is sticky and sweet and delicious. I think they take the poppy seed and engulf it in a tub of sugar and corn syrup and it comes out magical. So when you make these cinnamon rolls, I dare you to replace the filling with just a can of Solo poppy seed filling. I’m salivating thinking about it. *Warning, it may take some time to fully enjoy the amazing goodness of poppy seed filling if you haven’t grown up with it. Travis is not quite there yet…My brother-in-law is finally in love with it, but he has a few years on Travis in the poppy seed tradition.

Cinnamon RollsTravis agreed that we can make poppy seed rolls as part of our usual tradition on Christmas. However, since we were just figuring things out we landed on the cinnamon roll version for this year. And it’s hard to complain when you land on something so delicious. So I’ll share some of my poppy seed creations later. But for now, enjoy these cinnamon rolls! They will surely help make my Christmas morning so, so wonderful!

Christmas Morning Cinnamon Rolls
Yields 24
Gooey and sweet cinnamon roll treat perfect for special occasions!
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Prep Time
3 hr 20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
3 hr 40 min
Prep Time
3 hr 20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
3 hr 40 min
Yeast Dough
  1. 1 1/2 cups milk
  2. 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
  3. 2/3 cup white sugar
  4. 2 teaspoons salt
  5. 2 packets regular yeast (4 1/2 teaspoons)
  6. 1/2 cup lukewarm water
  7. 2 eggs
  8. 6 1/2 cups flour
Filling
  1. 1 1/2 cups brown sugar
  2. 1/4 cup cinnamon (4 tablespoons)
  3. 1/4 cup butter, melted
Icing
  1. 1 cup powdered sugar
  2. 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  3. 2-3 tablespoons water
Instructions
  1. Scald the milk in a sauce pan over medium heat. Remove from the heat and stir in the vegetable shortening until melted. Stir in the sugar and salt. Set aside to cool to lukewarm (about 10 minutes).
  2. While the milk mixture is cooling, dissolve the yeast in the lukewarm water in a large bowl. Let the yeast sit about 5-10 minutes (until the milk mixture is cooled).
  3. Add the milk mixture and eggs to the yeast mixture. Add in 3 1/2 cups of the flour and mix well. Add the remaining 3 cups of flour and knead until the mixture is smooth, about 5 minutes.
  4. Cover the dough with a towel or plastic wrap and let rise 1-2 hours, until doubled in size.
  5. Grease two 9" round cake pans.
  6. Combine brown sugar and cinnamon for the filling.
  7. Divide the dough into 2 and roll one of the halves out on a well floured surface until it is 12x18 inches. Brush a thin layer of melted butter over the dough and sprinkle on half of the filling.
  8. Roll the dough, so you end up with a log 18 inches long. Cut into 12 pieces. Place pieces in cake pan, with a little space around each roll so it can rise again.
  9. Repeat with the second batch.
  10. Let the rolls rise about another hour.
  11. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  12. Bake rolls for 15-20 minutes, or until golden brown.
  13. Combine icing ingredients. Once the rolls are slightly cooled (about 15 minutes), you can drizzle the icing on the rolls.
Notes
  1. To help the dough rise (especially when it's cold), I turn my oven on to the lowest temperature for about 5 minutes then turn the oven off. Then I put my dough in the oven to rise. Make sure to take it out before you preheat the oven to bake!!
  2. You can freeze the rolls once they are cooled but before you put the icing on. To do this, remove the rolls from the pan after they are cooled and wrap in plastic wrap (I also wrap with aluminum foil after the plastic). To serve, defrost in the refrigerator and top with icing. If you want them warm, you can reheat them in the microwave or in the oven prior to topping with icing.
  3. Rolls are best eaten fresh, but can last a couple of days (but they really won't make it that long!).
Flavor From Scratch http://www.flavorfromscratch.com/

Blueberry Oat Bars

Blueberry Oat BarsSummer is so close I can almost taste it. I say this as an occupational therapist in the schools where I think everyone can use a break, myself included (Don’t get me wrong, I love my job. But if you work with kids all day I’m sure you understand). I also say this as a food lover starting to notice a larger variety of fresh fruits and vegetables coming back into the stores. I just ate corn on the cob yesterday that was a burst of summer goodness in my mouth. I realize that corn really isn’t in season in Michigan right now and I have no idea where it came from (isn’t that horrible??) but it was still delicious. Ask me again in a few months and I’ll probably realize the corn we ate yesterday was not very good. It’s just been so long since my last fresh corn I’m pretty sure I forget these things.

Blueberry Oat BarsAs fruits and vegetables start to get into season, and get a lot cheaper because of that, I’ll be sure to be using lots of them in my cooking and baking. While it’s kind of still transitioning into that summer harvest season, this is a great recipe to try! It uses frozen blueberries, but still tastes oh so fresh. It’s like a blueberry crumble/bar/pie/amazing-thing-you-must-try. Don’t pass this one up.

Blueberry Oat BarsYou can eat these bars 2 ways. So versatile! You’re welcome. Option 1 would be to follow the instructions and let these bars cool (maybe even refrigerate) before serving. This makes it more like something that you can use your hands to pick up and eat. This would be a very civilized way to eat these blueberry oat bars.


Another way (option 2) to eat these is as follows:

  1. Wait impatiently by the oven while the bars cook, slowly realizing that the smell is becoming so wonderful it’s hard to stand.
  2. Once the timer finally goes off, briskly take them out to admire your creation.
  3. Wait about 1 minute, following the directions to let the bars cool completely.
  4. Decide that it’s ridiculous to even try waiting.
  5. Place an entire carton of ice cream or whipped cream on top, find your very best friends, and quickly eat the entire pan.
  6. Reflect about what just happened and decide that you did the right thing.

Option 2 is the more likely scenario once you smell the bars coming out of the oven and see how bubbly and golden brown and perfect they are. Maybe you’re a better person than me but I dare you not to at least think about option number 2. Just saying.Blueberry Oat Bars

Blueberry Oat Bars
Serves 8
Crumbly blueberry bar perfect for breakfast, brunch, or dessert!
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
55 min
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
55 min
Total Time
1 hr 30 min
Crust/Crumble Ingredients
  1. 1/2 cup butter (one stick), melted
  2. 1 cup all purpose flour
  3. 3/4 cups old-fashioned rolled oats
  4. 1/2 cup sugar
  5. 1/4 cup packed brown sugar
  6. pinch of salt
Blueberry Filling Ingredients
  1. 10 ounces of frozen blueberries
  2. 1/3 cup sugar
  3. 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  4. 2 teaspoons cornstarch
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Spray an 8x8" pan with cooking spray. Line with parchment. I lined the bottom and up 2 sides of the pan so that I could use the parchment to pull the bars out of the pan. Spray the parchment with more cooking spray.
Crust/Crumble Directions
  1. Combine crust/crumble ingredients in a bowl until they form a crumble mixture.
  2. Set 1 cup of crumble aside for the topping.
  3. Press the remainder of the mixture into the bottom of the lined pan, making sure it is evenly pressed.
Blueberry Filling Directions
  1. Toss all blueberry filling ingredients together in a large bowl.
  2. Evenly distribute over the uncooked crust.
  3. Sprinkle the reserved 1 cup of crumble mixture over the top of the blueberries.
  4. Bake 55 minutes, or until edges start to set and the crumble is starting to turn golden.
  5. Let cool at least 30 minutes before slicing and serving. If you want the bars to set more, place in the refrigerator once cooled for an additional 30 minutes before slicing and serving.
  6. Store in the refrigerator or in an airtight container.
Adapted from Averie Cooks
Adapted from Averie Cooks
Flavor From Scratch http://www.flavorfromscratch.com/

Breakfast Burrito and Happy News

Breakfast BurritoI have left you without a new recipe for so long and for that I am sorry. I’m sure it will make you feel better to know there was a good reason behind this deprivation. At least my husband and I think it’s a good reason…We’re expecting! We’ve had a crazy month of traveling to see family and friends and sharing the wonderful news. We’ve gotten a lot of stories about past pregnancies and babies, dirty diapers, and late nights. Some of it sounds awesome and other parts I’m just pretending I didn’t hear. Ignorance is bliss in some cases. I’m not sure anything will prepare us for what’s to come but we have amazing support from our loved ones and that sure that helps!

So on top of all that exciting craziness along with the normal day to day craziness of work, I have been lacking in the new recipe department. I have to say my mind is elsewhere. There’s really no other excuse. So I’m going to try to focus back in and share a scrumptious recipe with you all! Okay, go…

Breakfast BurritoI got this idea from my sister-in-law when we went to go visit her over the holidays. She had breakfast burritos all ready and frozen in the freezer so that when we all decided we were hungry she would be able to feed us something delicious fairly quickly. Really smart, right? It’s so hard to have guests over and this is a simple way to be prepared before anyone even steps foot in the door.


Breakfast BurritoIt’s really a rather simple recipe that uses fresh veggies and yummy ingredients. You can of course put whatever floats your boat into this instead of the veggies and ingredients I used. You can easily use ground sausage instead of turkey and skip some of the dried herbs. I wanted make my own flavor mix so I stuck with the ground turkey. I thought about putting beans in this recipe, but with everything else it was already about packed. You could also easily replace the turkey with beans to make it vegetarian.

Breakfast BurritoJust thinking about all these ideas makes me want to make another variation of these breakfast treats! There are just so many options…it blows my mind. If you come up with your own delicious variation, comment below with what you used!

Breakfast Burrito
Yields 8
Delicious turkey, egg, and veggie breakfast burrito. Easy to put together and easy to prepare when you're on the go!
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
40 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
20 min
Total Time
40 min
Ingredients
  1. 1 pound ground turkey, uncooked
  2. 1/2 onion, finely chopped
  3. 1 bell pepper, chopped
  4. 1/4 teaspoon dried thyme
  5. 1/2 teaspoon dried sage
  6. 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  7. 1/2 teaspoon dried parsley
  8. 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  9. salt and pepper, to taste
  10. 12 eggs
  11. 1/4 cup water
  12. 3 cups spinach leaves, roughly chopped
  13. 8-10 whole wheat burrito wraps
  14. 1-1.5 cups cheddar cheese, shredded
Instructions
  1. Brown ground turkey in a large saute pan over medium heat. Drain the excess fat and remove ground turkey from pan. Set aside.
  2. In the same pan, saute the onion, bell pepper, and herbs (thyme, sage, red pepper flakes, parsley, garlic powder, salt and pepper) over medium heat until tender, about 5-8 minutes. Reduce heat to low.
  3. Whisk together eggs, water, and salt and pepper (to taste). Add to pan with onion and bell pepper mixture. Stir while cooking over low heat until mostly cooked through. The eggs should look mostly cooked but still moist.
  4. Add the spinach leaves and cook over low until wilted. Stir in turkey to mixture until combined. Remove from heat.
  5. Place burrito wrap on square of aluminum foil just larger than the burrito. Fill burrito with 1/8 or 1/10 of the mixture (depending on how many wraps you have). Top with cheese.
  6. Roll as you would a burrito and wrap with the foil.
  7. If you want to eat immediately, place in an oven set to 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 10-15 minutes, until the cheese is melted and everything is warm.
  8. If you decide to freeze the burritos, defrost overnight in the refrigerator and bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20-25 minutes, or until heated through.
Notes
  1. Don't try to overfill the burritos because they will break if you put too much goodness into them!
Flavor From Scratch http://www.flavorfromscratch.com/

Sour Cream Banana Bread

Banana BreadIt’s not Christmas yet. In fact, it’s not even Thanksgiving. However, it snowed so much yesterday in Michigan that it sure feels more like Christmas than Thanksgiving. I’m talking multiple inches of snow, not just a dusting. Yes, I’m from the Midwest and am used to snow. No, we don’t usually get that much here this early.

Since it feels and looks like Christmas, I think it’s okay for me to talk about Christmas. **But for the record, I’m not a fan of the whole Christmas decoration thing immediately after Halloween**. Too soon. Too soon.

Banana BreadEvery Christmas Eve my extended family usually gathers together for dinner and fun. We tend to make and bring WAY too many cookies as a group to this celebration. We always end up with WAY too many leftover cookies that most of us cannot eat. However, I’m pretty sure my husband is a cookie eating machine at Christmas time so he helps the situation slightly.


Anyways, to help with the cookie overload, a few years back my mom started making mini loaves of bread for everyone to take home instead of sending them home with extra cookies. Not only delicious, but they are also perfect for a Christmas morning breakfast or brunch! When I asked my mom for the banana bread recipe she uses, she couldn’t find it!! Panic!! It’s possible she is hiding her recipe so she’s the only one that can make it but I’m pretty sure she probably just left the recipe with her mini loaf pans somewhere in the Christmas boxes. She’ll probably call me in a week with her recipe.

Banana BreadRegardless of whether this is THE banana bread recipe or not, this is sure to make your stomach happy. The cinnamon sugar coating on the pan is GENIUS! So much better than a flour coating. I made mine as full loaf pans but you can also reduce the cooking time to make smaller pans! Wrap them up and hand them out at Christmas. Everyone will love it!

Banana Bread

Sour Cream Banana Bread
Yields 2
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr 30 min
Total Time
1 hr 40 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
1 hr 30 min
Total Time
1 hr 40 min
To coat the pans
  1. 1/4 cup sugar
  2. 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  3. cooking spray
For the banana bread
  1. 3/4 cup butter
  2. 2 cups white sugar
  3. 1 cup brown sugar
  4. 3 eggs
  5. 6 ripe bananas, mashed
  6. 1 container sour cream (16 ounces)
  7. 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  8. 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  9. 4 1/2 cups flour
  10. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  11. 3 teaspoons baking soda
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Spray 2 loaf pans (mine were 9" x 5") with cooking spray. Mix together 1/4 cup sugar and 1 teaspoon cinnamon in a small bowl. Dust the loaf pans with the cinnamon and sugar mixture, making sure to cover the bottom and sides.
  3. Cream the butter, sugar, and brown sugar in a large mixing bowl. Mix in the eggs, bananas, sour cream, vanilla, and cinnamon.
  4. Stir in the flour, salt, and baking soda until just incorporated.
  5. Divide batter into the 2 loaf pans. *Optional: sprinkle a little white sugar on top to give a slight crunch to the top.
  6. Bake for 1 hour and 30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean from the center of the loaf.
  7. Remove bread from loaf pans and let cool on wire rack. To store, wrap in aluminum foil.
Notes
  1. I froze one of my loafs because they are so large. They freeze and thaw very well! You can also make this recipe with 4 smaller loaf pans (7" x 3"). If you use smaller pans, adjust the baking time to about an hour, then check with a toothpick to see if they are done.
Adapted from All Recipes | Banana Sour Cream Bread
Flavor From Scratch http://www.flavorfromscratch.com/

Blueberry Crumble Muffins & DIY Muffin Liners

Blueberry Crumble MuffinsThis recipe is a must at least once a summer with fresh blueberries. At LEAST. Most likely more than once. You’ll totally understand when you try it. I know. I know. It’s technically Fall now but this is my end of the season, last hurrah for blueberries before they cost a million dollars a pint. Maybe that’s a slight exaggeration. We’ll go with half a million dollars.

Blueberry Crumble MuffinsThe recipe originated from a blueberry buckle (kind of like a cake) from my grandma. I’ve already made the buckle form this summer so it was time to switch it up into muffin form! These muffins are the perfect way to make this recipe seem like breakfast material. Oh, don’t get me wrong…I would definitely eat it for breakfast in buckle form too but muffins just seem more socially acceptable.

process-combined2


Muffins are great because they are easy to share and serve. They can also be a grab and go food but that would just be wrong with these muffins. Spend some time enjoying them. Seriously.

Notice my fancy muffin liners?? You know that part of the recipe where you’re supposed to use a muffin or cupcake liner and you realize you completely forgot to buy them? That only happens to me about every time I make a muffin or cupcake. Literally. Every time. It’s like my brain doesn’t register the fact that I need them. Weird. So I make my own!

liner-comboIt’s a seriously simple solution to your muffin liner woes. All you need is some parchment paper and a pair of scissors. Just cut your parchment into squares that are about 5 inches by 5 inches. This is not a science. Measure if you must but really just make sure they are a couple inches bigger than the diameter of the muffin tin cup. Press the parchment paper in each muffin tin cup, folding to press in. This for sure takes some finagling. You can use a can or cup that fits in the muffin tin cup to push the paper down into the bottom. I, however, usually take the more rustic approach of pressing and then frantically filling the liner with batter to hold it down. You can either choose the more refined method or my method. Either way, you end up with a DIY muffin liner! It adds a bit of charm to your cupcakes or muffins and it’s super cheap too. Yay!

fin1

 

Blueberry Crumble Muffins
Yields 12
Print
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
30 min
Ingredients for the muffins
  1. 3/4 cup sugar
  2. 1/4 cup butter
  3. 1 egg
  4. 1/2 cup milk
  5. 2 cups flour
  6. 2 teaspoons baking powder
  7. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  8. 2 cups blueberries
Ingredients for the crumble topping
  1. 1/2 cup sugar
  2. 1/3 cup flour
  3. 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  4. 1/4 cup soft butter
Directions for the muffins
  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
  2. Cream 3/4 cup sugar, 1/4 cup butter, and egg with mixer. Stir in milk.
  3. In a separate bowl, whisk or sift together 2 cups flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir into wet ingredients until just combined.
  4. Gently stir in blueberries.
  5. Divide batter into lined muffin tin (12 muffins). The muffins will come almost to the top of the liners.
Directions for the crumble topping
  1. Mix together all the crumble ingredients until the butter is distributed into pea size pieces throughout.
  2. Top each muffin with crumble topping.
  3. Bake muffins for 25-30 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
Notes
  1. This originated as a blueberry buckle. Also AMAZING! To make this follow the same recipe, spreading the batter into a greased and floured 9 inch square pan. Top with the crumble topping and bake at 375 degrees Fahrenheit for 45-50 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.
  2. Delicious with fresh blueberries but you can use frozen blueberries that are completely drained of any liquid as well.
Flavor From Scratch http://www.flavorfromscratch.com/