It looks like I took the summer off. Well I did, sort of. We had a lot of projects going on around the house, basement renovations, replacing windows, new driveway. Needless to say, it is not finished, and in a house that is over 100 years old, it will probably never be done, completely.
I thought that we might start this year's column (yes it has been a year of me writing these) with breakfasts/brunches.
One thing I like about brunches is almost anything goes. I remember a Saturday morning after a late night of partying, that cold pizza was pretty good. Well, I think we can do a little better now that we are older and wiser (well older anyway.) I want to talk about those we can do on weekends.
Question: when was the last time you made pancakes? How about French toast? Whether you use a box of mix for your pancakes or use the recipe below, your family will appreciate the effort, and, if you want to get up and do this, it will probably put you in good standings with your partner (for a while anyway.)
With pancakes or French toast you can serve bacon or sausages, almost any fruits, (strawberries or blueberries are some of my favourites,) a bowl of yogurt, and, if you have young ones about, try a bowl of chocolate pudding with some whipped cream on the side. Suggestions for a cool rainy weekend go with buttermilk pancakes, sausage and/or bacon, scrambled eggs. What I like about this breakfast is you cook the bacon /sausage, put in the oven to keep warm, cook the scrambled eggs and keep warm, and make the pancakes and keep warm, and all you have to do is call everyone to the table take everything out of the oven and sit down and enjoy you breakfast together. If it is a nice sunny morning, I like to make French toast with whatever fruits I have in (pick your favorite) apples, banana, watermelon, grapes, the list could go on and on, remember pick the ones you like.
A nice trick with French toast is to add a little vanilla extract and a little milk to your eggs (half teaspoon to every three eggs) before you dip your bread in. In the restaurant it was a good way to use up stale bread. To add a little flair to this, I will mix a little cinnamon with some icing sugar, and dust the top of the toast just before serving. I will cook these on a flat grill medium heat and a little butter. Or use a non-stick skillet.
Basic Pancake Recipe:
1 1/4 cups of sifted all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 teaspoons baking powder
1 beaten egg
1 cup of milk (or buttermilk)
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
Sift together dry ingredients, mix egg, milk and vegetable oil, then combine dry and wet together do not over stir together. Moist is good, lumpy is OK.
To make blueberry pancakes, cook pancakes on one side till lightly brown, add drained blueberries (one heaping teaspoon,) turn and finish cooking.
I will finish up in my next column with some more variation on pancakes and fluff eggs.
Stay tuned, and maybe we will have another contest this year, so I can come and cook for you.