Tag Archives: french toast

Note to Self…

This morning, hardly awake:

First thought – DKM. Dropkick Murphys. YES! That was it! go back to sleep.

Second thought – Bran muffins. I want some bran muffins. go back to sleep.

Third thought – I think I’ll sleep in today. I’m a little tired and it looks crappy out so I probably won’t be going anywhere anyway. shut eyes.

Fourth thought – The phone would ring immediately after I declare I’m sleeping in, wouldn’t it?

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So, basically I must have been driving myself crazy in my sleep because I still hadn’t thought of what DKM was before I went to bed. There were a couple bloggers who guessed it [e-mail me to redeem your prizes], which just made me laugh and remember waking up with “Shipping Up to Boston” in my head moments earlier.

And no, it’s not just because of the Bruins that I love that song. I mean, just listen to it. First thing in the morning, preferably. And do some Irish jigs around your butcher block in the kitchen while preparing your breakfast.

In a leprechaun hat, preferably.

Not that I would know anything about any of that scenario.

I would know something about flaxy French toast, though. So I’ll talk about that, instead. I’ll leave it to your own imaginations as to whether I was tap dancing around my kitchen while making this, though.

 

Being that I looked out my window and saw this yet again:

Really wet, heavy snow. Read: Sloppy and slippery. House arrest once again.

I decided to make something a little more time consuming for breakfast. I have pancakes down to a science so I can make them quickly in the morning, which carries over to mornings when I have more time, too. Having nowhere to go, I decided to put a little more thought into breakfast this morning.

I’ve been wanting to make French toast for a while now, but wasn’t sure if the mini slices would be enough for keeping me full. Today, I knew I’d be home all day. Worse comes to worse, I eat an hour later, right?! Surprisingly enough, it was difficult for me to finish it all! Don’t worry, though – I took one for the team and did.

Yes, it really is possible to get that same French toast texture without eggs! Making it with flax sounds strange at first, I admit. I mean, I think I was legitimately grossed out when I first heard of it, so I don’t blame you if you are, too.

But I mean, really. Have I ever lied to you? -insert shifty-eyes here-

Buttering/Earth Balancing your pan is critical to making any sort of pancake or sandwich – and French toast is no exception. You don’t need a lot, but you can’t even compare the flavor to that and just using non-stick spray.

And please, no need to be “neat” about it. We’re not after pretty awards here, we all know the ugly food is the best.

Huh, maybe that’s why I’m always disappointed whenever I go out to eat…

If you’re patient and give it enough time – the outside still gets crispy while the insides are still moist and flavorful. I’m sorry if you hate the word moist. I do, too – but really, what else can I say? Damp? It’s not juicy not is it soggy.

The Mixture I used (approximately, anyways…about that measuring thing…)

  • 2 T. milled flaxseed
  • 1/4 c. + 2 T. coconut milk
  • 1/2 t. coffee extract (vanilla would work just fine, I just so happen to be the person who is all out of vanilla, yet has plenty of coffee, peppermint and coconut extracts. I would.)
  • pinch ground cinnamon
  • pinch ground nutmeg

Mix all with a fork, allowing to sit a few minutes. Add more milk if necessary. Poke each piece of bread a few times before dipping each slice in and saturating. Transfer to a greased pan, allowing extra of the flax mixture to remain on the bread. Cook about 4-5 minutes on each side, until crispy.

Garnish with grilled banana and figgy peanut butter and jelly sauce. And chia seeds and honey-roasted almonds if you’re feeling feisty.

Note to self: I miss you terribly. (speaking of “bring me back” songs…)

Er, wait, what I meant was – note to self: make French toast more often.

And about those bran muffins?

They were not just a groggy early-morning sentiment, my dears. They were happening.

I promise these were muffins for me, not Teddie. I kept thinking how much he would love them. Carrots, applesauce, molasses, cinnamon and sunflower seeds? The kid would be in heaven.

I used these almost-forgotten about pressed dates that Mo sent me way back when. I got a kick out of the “serving size: 1 package,” as I imagined myself just plopping down on the couch and nommin’ on the brick like so:

om-nom-nom

The recipe I used was Kelsey’s. And they are fantastic! It’s a good thing I didn’t actually read the recipe before I printed it off and trekked into my kitchen, though. It requires the use of a food processor, which is usually a big no-no for me. For some reason, I detest cleaning the processor in addition to regular baking dishes. Or in general. Same goes for garlic presses.

Life’s tough.

I realize this is probably old-news, but my new trick is using an ice-cream scoop. I used to just spoon it in, but then I’d have really ugly muffin tops. This leaves them nice and smooth!

And perfectly sized! Well actually my mini-muffins are perfectly sized since I usually just want a little somethin’ somethin’ when it comes to muffins, but that would have required me refilling the tray about ten times.

Which wasn’t happening.

I am very picky about my bran muffins – a lot of bran muffin recipes use more oat bran than wheat, and are too sweet for my liking. I like my bran muffins to be dense, moist and…well…wheaty! These are just the ticket.

Another added bonus: they didn’t require any bananas. I love bananas, and have a great branana muffin recipe – but I’m down to my last banana and you guys know what happens when I lose my bananas. I think I might hide the last one, just as an extra precaution. You know…in case someone else might want it, heaven forbid.

But if I haven’t convinced you to make bran muffins or flaxy French toast…maybe I can convince you to do this:

Toast up some good bread…smother one slice with cashew butter…smother the other with a bit o’ butter/earth balance…throw on some good dried apricots…drizzle a smidgen o’ maple syrup…and chow down. Heavenly.

(but what’s with me saying o’ instead of “of”? Am I really feeling that Irish today?)

And I’ll leave you with this scandalous picture:

I had sausages with dinner! I love sausages…

What’s something you openly admit to having high standards about? I am definitely a bread snob!

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English Muffins and Stuff

Question: Was I looking forward to going to work today after finally having time to relax?

Answer: No. So I didn’t. I’m sick, can’t you tell?

…just kidding. More like…I didn’t want to risk life or limb driving in. It’s a wonder I haven’t blown away yet. In fact – it feels like today has been twenty different days all wrapped up in one.

  • Started off listening to wind howling, saying “oh hail no, I’m not driving to work,” and wondering when the roof was going to come off.
  • Realized it was going to be a long day not being able to a. go anywhere, b. bake (…much…), or c. get things done on the computer (due to aforementioned problems). So instead, started cleaning. A little obsessively, I might add. In my mother’s words, the kitchen sink is nowย shinier than she’s ever seen it. And she’s a good cleaner.
  • Listed stuff I will never use again on eBay. Like old show clothes so that I can buy new for (hopefully) next show season!
  • Mourned the loss of power and started layering up. Just in case, you know, we were out for three days again. Sorted through recipes.
  • Did an electricity happy dance when it came back on an hour later. Oh thank you lord.
  • Shoveled. A lot. There’s a lot of snow. It’s also really windy. Every time I’d throw the snow to the side, it’d just blow back onto what I was shoveling. It took some crafty maneuvering, but ultimately – I came out on top. You will not hinder me, snow.
  • Baked anyways.

Oh yeah, and was greeted at lunch time by THE best gift ever.

Jess sent me cookie dough balls!! It made me realize how I’m always the one giving away baked goods – and receiving baked goods from someone else (especially a wonderful friend!) was really exciting for me.

And my mom and her boyfriend. I’m told I’ll be making these soon. And I agree – they are phenomenal. See, for some reason I just kept putting off Mama Pea’s cookie dough balls (I don’t know why)…and Jess definitely found a way to suck me into the cookie dough cult! I’m not sorry.

Can you tell what else has gone on in my kitchen? Well, besides the gnochhi, various tofus, polenta-chickpea bakeย and cranberry-lime-coconut muffins?

You win…English muffins! Ever since buying the spelt English muffins that the Vermont Baking Company produces, I’ve been reminded of my slight obsession with English muffins. I mean, think about it…they’re soft, doughy, perfectly sized, crusty exterior and you can do anything you want with them. (oooh, racy.)

Add to that the fact that I had more fun making them than a cat has with a laser pointer.

Oh, and they’re easy. And now I have homemade English muffins. na-na-na-na boo boo!

I followed this recipe, though I think I ended up using 2 c. white whole wheat flour and only 1/2 c. bread flour.ย  Oh, and used honey instead of sugar. The only problem I had was that the baking soda was really difficult to mix in, and they could be a little sweeter. (well, according to my mom, it doesn’t bother me any.)

Of course, I don’t consider myself an English muffin conniseur. I enjoy them, but I don’t really care about nooks and crannies. I’m perfectly happy being handed a Thomas English muffin. Although these are way better, so that could change in the future.

I made some of them cinnamon-raisin, too. Though it didn’t backfire, next time I’ll have to remember to just create two separate batters from the get-go. Stirring in cinnamon and raisins after the dough had formed was also tricky…even if I did get sort of neat swirls of cinnamon ๐Ÿ˜‰

And what better use for my homemade english muffins than to make flaxy french toast for breakfast?!

Oh, how silly of me – of course you can have better than flaxy french toast. Like when it’s smothered in maple peanut butter, grilled banana, raisins, maple syrup and sunflower kernels.

D’oh.

Santa brought me this peanut butter in my stocking. While I may have been on the fence about the previous Vermont Peanut Butter Company flavors – this “Harvest” peanut butter is a real winner. Like…I would take a bath in this if it was socially acceptable. Why bathing in peanut butter isn’t socially acceptable is a debate for another day.

Anyways. Does anyone else think grilled/caramelized bananas sort of resemble tongues? Because I do. And if I just ruined grilled bananas for you, I sincerely apologize, but I don’t mean it in a gross way.

Personally, I think it’s kinda cute! And you probably think I’m on crack right now, but it’s really just good old-fashioned time off that’s making me this loopy.

And in case you were wondering how I made my flaxy french toast (you probably weren’t) I’ll tell you.

I mixed together:

  • 1 tablespoon milled flaxseed
  • 2 T. So Delicious coconut milk yogurt
  • 3 T. unsweetened almond milk
  • hefty pinch of cinnamon

before halving an English muffin and soaking each half in it, on both sides, and poking the bejeebus out of it so it’d soak up the maximum amount of goodness.

I’ve also got a thing lately for grilling stuff in Earth Balance (or butter could be the alternative). It owns non-stick spray anyday of the week. Well, depends on the circumstances I guess because sometimes it’s just plain easier to use spray (like for muffins, or when you’re sauteein onions in olive oil…work with me here)

Anyways. I think you’ve heard enough from me for one day, even though it feels like I’ve got a whole load of recipes to share with you.

What’s your favorite snow day activity?

OH!! And because I forgot yesterday and was unable to deliver the message prior, Teddie says Merry Christmas/Happy Holidays:

…I don’t humiliate him or anything…not at all!

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Haircuts and Hummus

Is it obvious, yet, that I’ve gone through a bread withdrawal?

Yeah, I thought so. Hence the flaxy french toast that just had to happen this morning! Just making up for lost…bread.

I dipped the slices of fresh bread into a mixture of:

  • 2 T. milled golden flax
  • 2 T. water
  • 4 T. almond milk
  • almond extract
  • cinnamon

I let it sit for a little bit to get gooey, and then just cooked on both sides on a nonstick pan. Tasted just like “normal” french toast.

Except way better. I have nothing against French toast using eggs, I just wanted to do something a little different, and was sort of curious as to whether flax french toast really actually tasted “legit,” as kids are so often saying these days.

Well, the term legit, anyways. I don’t think there’s a bunch of other kids my age talking about flaxy french toast.

I topped it with a sliced nuked banana and fig mix, along with some icing:

  • spoonful greek yogurt
  • maple syrup
  • splash of almond milk
  • chia seeds

This was a perfect start to my day. I went all morning doing chores and working and riding Teddie, and wasn’t even ravenous when lunch time rolled around. But, since my mom and I were planning on going to an auction this afternoon, I went ahead and ate anyways.

A small yet filling salad!

  • lettuce [from the garden!!]
  • snap peas
  • seitan
  • feta cheese
  • sesame seeds
  • and a “dressing” of hummus mixed with Ragu

and more bread. Because that’s how I roll.

The afternoon consisted of playing with the ponies and horses here and said auction. I think we go to this auction to people watch more than because we are looking for equipment. And we’re obviously not looking for more horses ๐Ÿ˜‰

After our fair share of people watching, though, we moved along to the grocery store where I accidentally purchased $9 worth of cherries. Whoops. They were on sale, but all of the bags were huge, and I wasn’t about to start separating cherries like you can bananas.

Although, I did overhear one reassuring conversation:

Mom 1: “Did you want cookies too, Jane? Oh, wait, you don’t do cookies with lunch.”

Mom 2: “Uh, no, my kids get hummus.”

My mom: “Good choice!”

If I was closer I probably would have grinned and said something similar, although I guess that Mom 1 could have found that rude.

After we got home and took care of all the animals it was getting late, so I just threw together an old faithful. Well, almost. I’ve realized when I don’t have any ideas for dinner, I just grab a sweet potato and roll with it. I also decided I wanted honey curry chickpeas with broccoli. And then my irrational brain said “hey, salad is good too.” So, for whatever reason, I chose to combine salad with sweet potato and honey-curry chick peas. This could have worked it the lettuce was spinach, but I only had buttercrisp…which was sort of a failure and I ate around it.

But, the sweet potato and honey curry chickpeas were phenomenal. I love the honey and curry mix. Just simmer almond milk, honey, and curry powder with chickpeas, and today I added in broccoli and red pepper, too. It’s even better when you have time to roast the sweet potatoes the same way, but I just microwaved it tonight.

And now I’m watching the news, which is talking about Iron Kids – oh my gawww, these kids rock!!

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Pony Tales!

I’m going to try to be more diligent about separating food & horses just because I know some people probably find it confusing and/or boring ๐Ÿ˜› But – Teddie was amazing this morning! I think we had the best ride yet, but we also had a challenge in the beginning – a mare being worked in the indoor, oh boy!! The little things are so exciting for his little mind ๐Ÿ˜‰ He was pretty interested when we were grooming him in the aisles, and when the girl was cooling her out we asked if it’d be alright if we walked Teddie around in there, too. Normally it’s fine to share the ring – but I didn’t want him to be stupid and ruin her ride. He was actually really good with her also in the ring, so I went ahead and lunged him a couple minutes before hopping on him for a great w-t ride.

And as for the two new ponies – well, Maya got a haircut!

Yeah, we’ve already switched her name. We kept wanting to say Maya instead of Mia. Anyways. Look at this dredlock she had!

And we also cut her forelock so maybe she can actually see now ๐Ÿ˜‰

Okay, so maybe it looks a little dorky, but it’s really hard to cut a horse’s forelock! I wasn’t about to pull it like you would a mane!

She is such a sweet heart. Just wants to be loved!! And we actually think that she is the mother of the other mare – her udder looks more like a mare who has been a mother, and, judging by her teeth, she is older.

And if her forelock still looks long, here’s a comparison to what is was:

This little girl is a little more shy, but warms up fast. She’s my pick ๐Ÿ˜‰ And she still needs a name! We were just saying random things trying to see what “fit,” haha. I think we went through Roomba, Peaches, Nina, Lena, Aria, Austria, Loki, and I can’t even remember what else. Anyone have any suggestions?! Peaches stuck for a while, and then I said what about Lena but my mom thought I said Nina. My mom likes Nina, but I don’t ๐Ÿ˜›

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