breakfast · pumpkin

Pumpkin Monday – Waffles!

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What’s better than a good breakfast?  Sharing it with friends!  We had the blessing of doing just that this weekend.

Today’s pumpkin theme take us to the breakfast table where yummy Pumpkin Waffles bring fall to your morning.  Since we had a guest this weekend I wanted to have something a little special to start their day.

My menu included: 

Pumpkin Waffles
Bacon
Fruit topped with yogurt and granola
Coffee

I hope my breakfast made our guest feel as glad to be with us as we were to have him here!

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Rand Hummel, from The Wilds of New England was here for the weekend.  He attended a wedding and preached in our church. We were thankful to be able to return some of the hospitality he and his sweet wife, Amber showed us when we were in New England in September!

Many Pumpkin Waffle recipes I looked at had the complaint that the waffles weren’t crispy.  My remedy was making them ahead of time, freezing them and then popping them into the toaster before eating.  They were perfect!  To do that I:

  1. Let the waffles cool on a cooling rack.

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2.  Put waxed paper between the waffles and layered them in a Ziploc Bag. Then I popped them into the freezer until the next day!  I simply toasted them in the toaster until they were crispy.

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Pumpkin Waffles

Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup whole wheat flour
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1-1/4 cups buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup fresh or canned pumpkin
  • 2 tablespoons butter, melted
  • Butter and maple syrup, optional

Directions

  • In a large bowl, combine the first nine ingredients. In a small bowl, whisk the eggs, buttermilk, pumpkin and melted butter. Stir into dry ingredients just until moistened.  Note:  I substituted the cinnamon, ginger and cloves with 1 1/2 tsp Pumpkin Pie Spice
  • Bake in a preheated waffle iron according to manufacturer’s directions until golden brown. (I used a Belgian Waffle Maker) Serve with butter and syrup if desired.

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These waffles have a nice pumpkin flavor, helped by the spices.  I love having homemade waffles in my freezer ready for a quick breakfast.  In thirty minutes you can whip these up and stick them away – or eat right away!  It’ll be a great start to your day!!

Happy Monday, Pumpkin!

Denise

breakfast · Fast meal · Make-Ahead

Breakfast That is “Love In a Jar”

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Yep, you read that right – love in a jar!  That quote came from my husband when I fixed these cute little Instant Oatmeal Jars to have ready for his breakfast.  He LOVES a good bowl of hot oatmeal with fruit and a handful of nuts.

Our morning routines find my husband downstairs with coffee and Bible, and me upstairs.  Because of this, he often starts our breakfast.  This winter he had gotten really proficient at making up a couple of servings of oatmeal for us to have each morning!  That is saying a lot for a guy who only feels confident enough to make about three things – Scrambled eggs, French toast and …okay, make that two!  Though he’d learned the simple art of cooking the Quick oats, I thought I’d make it even a little easier without purchasing those nasty packets of Instant Oatmeal.

Here was the result: Instant Oatmeal Jars

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The blessing of having the jars already filled is that there’s no measuring or finding a pan or the additives.  Just open a jar, add a cup of boiling water and let it set for 4-5 minutes.  Voila!  It’s done!  You can be as creative with flavors and additions as your taste buds allow.  I made up several jars and have them in the pantry ready for any morning we’re hungry for oatmeal!

Here’s how I made mine:

Instant Oatmeal Jars

1/2 C Quick cooking oats
1 Tbl Craisins
1Tbl Chopped nuts
Dash of salt
1/4 tsp cinnamon
1 Tbl brown sugar

Keep in a tightly closed jar until ready to use!

When ready to use:

  1. Add 1 cup boiling water (you could use milk instead) to the jar.
  2. Stir.
  3. Replace lid and let set for 4-5 minutes.
  4. Add other fresh fruits as desired. Eat!

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Here is the process in pictures:
1.
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2.
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3.
Oatmeal

4.

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We love blueberries, bananas and/or strawberries in our oatmeal!

This would make a great breakfast for a busy morning!  You could take the jar out the door with you, if needed.  Everything is contained and could be sealed back up when empty!

The first morning my husband had his “jar of oatmeal,” he sent me a text while I was getting ready upstairs.  It read,

“Now that’s love in a jar right there!”


That made me smile!! I’m on the lookout for freeze-dried fruits to add to my next batches.  I wonder what he’ll say about that?! I can’t wait to hear!

What would you add to a jar of oatmeal?  Peanut butter?  Coconut?  I’d love to hear!

Denise Signature 150 px

breakfast · Main entree

Kid Friendly/Adult loved French Toast Sticks

Happy New Year Friends!  I missed posting and interacting with you last week, but it was nice to have a little vacation with my family over the holidays!  I hope your Christmas and New Year were memorable and special! More about that later this week, but let’s get on with a new recipe, shall we?

One favorite theme at the holidays is the food, right?  Maybe you’re limiting yourself from certain food groups now that the celebrations are over, but if you have children in your life, I have to share a new French Toast Stick recipe that I made for my grandsons and we ALL loved!

French Toast sticks that you buy frozen are usually tough, but these are soft and easy for little ones to hold and chew.  Take a look!

French Toast sticks

This came from another Gooseberry Cookbook, which are some of my favorites!

French Toast Sticks

4-5 Slices bread
3 C Rice crispy cereal, crushed
1 T Sugar
1 tsp cinnamon
3 eggs, beaten
1 C Milk
1 tsp vanilla
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 C butter, Melted

Cut each slice of bread into 4 strips.  Combine crushed cereal, sugar and cinnamon in a medium bowl; set aside.

Mix together eggs, milk, vanilla and salt in another bowl.  Dip each bread stick into egg mixture and then (quickly) remove and dip into sugar coating.  Place sticks on an ungreased 13 x 9 baking pan, pour melted butter over top.  Bake at 375 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden.  Makes 16 – 20 sticks.

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I served these with warm syrup.  Yum!  They were scrumptious!

Prep the ingredients the night before for a quick breakfast in the morning.  Then when you’re ready to bake, do the dipping into the egg and cereal mixtures and place in the oven.

Now, don’t you wish it was time for breakfast???!!!!

Denise Signature 150 px

baking · Uncategorized

Breakfast Muffins To Start Your Day!

Muffin 1

I love to look at the reviews of recipes I’m going to make, but I have to laugh at people who give a great recipe a horrible review and then go on to share how they did NOT follow the directions!  Hello?  That’s what directions are for!
Try a recipe once.  If you don’t love it, then you can tweak the it a bit, then try again.  But give the recipe a chance!!

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Saturday night I went strictly by the recipe I found in my Cooking Light Cookbook and I made their Lemon-Blueberry Muffins.  They were supposed to be used for Sunday breakfast.  I baked them   and “someone” smelled them from his office and came in for a taste!  Two muffins later  he returned to his office, declaring them, “Absolutely scrumptious!”  There were plenty for breakfast – and I love it when he wants to try what I bake!

Here are a few pictures of the process:

Be sure to add a tablespoon of flour to your blueberries before you add them to the batter. This will keep them from falling to the bottom of the muffin.

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Some people who reviewed this recipe said they left the glaze off and served them plain.  I would definitely add the glaze!  It makes them so good!!!  Here they are cooling, waiting to be drenched in that lemony glaze…

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This is what I’m talking about….
Why would you leave that off???

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Finally, here’s the recipe.  You need these muffins in your morning routine!

Lemon-Blueberry Muffins
Ingredients

2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 cup butter
1 1/4 cups low-fat buttermilk
1 large egg
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
1 cup blueberries
Cooking spray
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Preparation

Preheat oven to 400°.

Lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine flour and next 5 ingredients (flour through nutmeg) in a medium bowl; cut in butter with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal.

Combine buttermilk, egg, and rind; stir well with a whisk. Add to flour mixture; stir just until moist. Gently fold in blueberries.

Spoon batter into 12 muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Bake at 400° for 20 minutes or until the muffins spring back when lightly touched. Remove muffins from pans immediately, and place on a wire rack to cool.

Combine lemon juice and powdered sugar in a small bowl. Drizzle glaze evenly over cooled muffins.

Note: You can make these muffins up to 2 days ahead and glaze them the morning you need them.

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When you bake, do you go strictly by the recipe when you first try it?
Let me know if you make these!

With love from my country kitchen,

Uncategorized

Freshen Up Friday

My go-to breakfast is Vanilla Greek Yogurt with fresh fruit, topped with granola.  I like the Greek yogurt better than the other stuff, but often find that it isn’t sweet enough for me.  Do you ever find that true?

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So, the other day, rather than drizzling in my usual teaspoon or so of honey, I tried something new and added a spoonful of my homemade freezer jam.  Wowza!  That made it delicious!  It gave it a natural strawberry flavor and just enough sweetness to make me slide my spoon over the whole bowl so I wouldn’t miss a drop!

Freshen up your yogurt and your breakfast by adding a little jam into your yogurt and go wild with all the flavors out there – blueberry, peach, blackberry…  Who says yogurt is only for breakfast?  This makes me think about enjoying it as a great snack, too!

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Any other Greek Yogurt lovers out there?  How do you enjoy yours?

Stay refreshed,

Bread · breakfast

What’s Cookin’ in the Country?

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A heavy sprinkling of flour, measuring cups and baking ingredients were spread out on the counter.  The mixer was whirring and the oven was hot.  That pretty much describes my Saturday. And I loved it.  It was a Baking Day; one of my favorite kind of days at home!  A holiday, a church banquet and company invited for Sunday dinner were all the reasons that I got to attend to this hobby I love!

On my list of “To-Do’s” were Make-Ahead Butterhorns, Sugar cookies, Blueberry Pecan Scones and Salted Caramel Cheesecakes.  The Butterhorns are a fantastic roll to make and have on hand.  The recipe makes 32 rolls.  You make up the dough, roll them into their shapes, then freeze them until you need them.  They just need several hours to thaw/rise.  These are easy and so yummy!  

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Frozen Rolls, ready to rise and bake.

 

20150214_123707_resized  I made the sugar cookies for Valentine’s day gifts.  I make these all year long in  different shapes and decorations.  

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The Blueberry Scones were part of my Valentine’s Day Brunch.  I found this recipe in my Cooking Light Cookbook.  They were a perfect addition to the menu!

20150214_093057_resizedBlueberry-Pecan Scones

1/2 Cup 2% milk
1/4 Cup sugar
2 Tsp grated lemon rind
1 tsp vanilla
1 egg
2 cups flour
1 tbl baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
3 Tbl chilled butter, cut into small pieces
1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries
1/4 cup finely chopped pecan
Cooking spray
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
2 tbl. sugar

Preheat oven to 375 degrees.  Combine first 5 ingredients in a bowl, stirring with whisk.  Combine dry ingredients.  cut in butter with a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse meal.  Gently fold in blueberries and pecans.  Add milk mixture, stirring just until moist (dough will be sticky).

Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Pat dough into an 8-inch circle on a baking sheet coated with cooking spray.  Cut dough into 10 wedges, cutting into, but not through dough.  Brush egg white over dough wedges, sprinkle with 2 tbl. sugar.  Bake at 375 for 18 minutes or until golden.  Serve warm.

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Add a cup of coffee, a scrambled egg and a piece of turkey sausage, and you have the perfect brunch for Valentine’s Day, President’s Day, or an ordinary do-nothing day!

Are you having a snowy day today?  Days like that are great days to get in the kitchen and bake up something special.  If you have the ingredients on hand, I hope you’ll try one of these recipes!

Be sure to check here on Wednesday for a peek at the Salted Caramel Cheescakes I made.  They’re pretty and scrumptious! 

With love from my country kitchen,

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