Recipe—Breakfast Pizza

Breakfast Pizzas

I love breakfast and I love pizza. (Everyone does, right?) Put them together and you get the best of both worlds. Breakfast truly is one of my favorite meals but I just don’t take the time to enjoy it nearly enough. So when I can find recipes that are quick and awesome (like breakfast pizza) they are an instant fave. Come on, a savory breakfast pizza built upon a fluffy and buttery crescent crust topped with sausage, eggs, and melted cheese. I could seriously start every morning with this recipe.

INGREDIENTS
1 lb loose meat breakfast sausage
1 tube crescent roll dough (like Pillsbury)
1 c cheddar, shredded
6 eggs
1/4 c milk
1 tsp rosemary
salt and pepper

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 400º.
  • Cook the sausage in a skillet over medium-high heat making sure to break up any large chunks until it is cooked thoroughly.
  • Transfer the sausage to a plate covered in paper towels to soak up the oil.
  • Unroll the crescent dough and lay it out in the bottom of a 9” x 13” baking dish and press the seams together to make one large sheet of dough.
  • Sprinkle the sausage evenly over the crescent dough.
  • Distribute the cheese over the sausage.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together the eggs, milk, rosemary, salt, and pepper.
  • Pour the egg mixture over the top making sure the pizza is evenly covered.
  • Bake the pizza for 15–20 minutes or until the crust is golden and eggs are set.
  • Remove form oven and allow to cool for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

Recipe adapted from Bran Apetit.

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Brunch Ideas for Mother’s Day

Mothers Day Brunch Ideas

Mother’s Day is just around the corner! While going out to brunch is great, I personally think an elegant brunch with my family at home is the best way to spend the day. This time of year we have such fabulous weather in California so sprucing up a table on the patio with some nice linens and flowers can be just as nice as going out to eat. If you are planning on cooking brunch for Mother’s Day for your mom, or perhaps even your wife (hint, hint spouses) here are some of my favorite recipes that any mom would be sure to enjoy. Happy Mother’s day to all the moms out there!

Mothers Day Brunch Ideas

  1. Asparagus Gruyére Tart
  2. Moist Banana Nut Bread
  3. Breakfast Portobellos
  4. Individual Blueberry Cheesecakes in Mason Jars
  5. Hot Ham & Swiss Sammies
  6. Breakfast Potatoes
  7. Blueberry Cream Cheese Danishes
  8. Peaches & Cream Cheesecake Bars
  9. Sausage Gravy
  10. Almond Poppy Seed Bread
  11. Broccoli & Cheddar Egg Bake
  12. Spiced Carrot Bread
  13. Blueberry French Toast Casserole
  14. Strawberry Pie
  15. Raspberry Turnovers
  16. Leek Quiche

Looking for more brunch ideas or perhaps you are thinking of cooking a nice dinner instead? Check out my recipe box. There are lots of great ideas listed by category there!

Recipe—Blueberry French Toast Casserole

Blueberry French Toast Casserole

I run a household that always seems to be full of friends and family who come to visit on the weekends. I absolutely love entertaining and cooking delicious meals for my visitors. What I don’t love is when I’m in the kitchen for hours on end. It means I am missing out on valuable time with them. This is a breakfast dish that is perfect for when you are entertaining, or heck, even if you just want an easy breakfast in the morning for the family. You prepare this in advance before your company even arrives, and then just pull it out and pop it in the oven in the morning. And by make it in advance is that you literally take the ingredients, plop them in a dish (in an orderly fashion of course) and refrigerate. How much more easy could it get? Easy to prep and easy to bake. That is my kind of breakfast!

INGREDIENTS
12 slices French toast bread, cut into 1” cubes
16 oz (2-8 oz blocks) cream cheese, cut into cubes
2 c blueberries
12 eggs
2 c milk
1/2 c syrup
1 tsp vanilla

STEPS

  • Grease a 9” x 13” baking dish.
  • Spread half of the bread cubes into the bottom of the baking dish.
  • Sprinkle about three quarters of the cream cheese cubes over the bread.
  • Sprinkle about three quarters of the blueberries into the dish.
  • Top with remaining bread, cream cheese, and blueberries.
  • In a large bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, syrup, and vanilla.
  • Pour the egg mixture over the entire dish.
  • Using your fingers or the back of a spatula gently press all of the bread pieces down into the egg mixture.
  • Cover the baking dish with foil and place in the fridge 8 hours or overnight.
  • When ready to bake remove the dish from the fridge and allow it to sit on the counter for about 30 minutes.
  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • Keep the dish covered in foil and bake for 45 minutes.
  • Remove the foil and continue baking until the top is s nice golden brown and the egg mixture is set, about an additional 20–30 minutes.
  • Remove from oven and allow it to cool for 5 minutes.
  • Cut and serve.

Recipe—Raspberry Turnovers

Raspberry Turnovers

Over the summer my mom was coming for a visit and I was trying to think of something fun that we could do outside. I decided to take her, my husband, and son berry picking at Patrick’s Mountain Grown Fresh Berry Farm. It was a total blast!

My gorgeous mom and son in the berry field.

My gorgeous mom and son in the berry field.

My little man in the berry field. I think he ate more than he picked.

My little man in the berry field. I think he ate more than he picked.

We ended up picking 12 pounds of delicious raspberries and blackberries.

Twelve pounds of fresh berries ready to be eaten, baked, and canned.

Buckets of fresh berries ready to be eaten, baked, and canned.

Within 24 hours of picking we made raspberry jam, blackberry jam, blackberry ice cream, blackberry cobbler, mixed berry hand pies, and these tasty raspberry turnovers. (Don’t worry, I will eventually get around to sharing all of those fabulous recipes.) We ended up making these for breakfast and oh my goodness were they tasty! The perfect balance of sweet and tart. While it may not be berry season right now, you can most certainly find some at your local market. So please, give these a try. They are the perfect treat for breakfast or dessert.

My little man devouring a raspberry turnover for breakfast.

My little man devouring a raspberry turnover for breakfast.

Note: If you don’t think you will eat these all in one sitting, no need to waste. Just freeze some of them! They freeze great and can easily be baked at a later date. Just place any extra unbaked turnovers on a wax paper lined sheet and freeze for at least an hour. Once they are frozen solid, transfer them to an airtight bag or container. When you are ready to cook them just place them on the parchment paper lined baking sheet for 15–20 minutes and then bake as directed below.

INGREDIENTS
1/4 c flour
1 package puff pastry (2 sheets), thawed
1/2 c raspberry jam
1 1/4 c fresh raspberries
1 egg
1 tbsp water
2 tsp sugar

STEPS

  • Spread the flour around your work surface and unfold the puff pastry sheets.
  • Cut each sheet into either 4 or 9 squares. It just depends how small or large you want your turnovers.
  • In a small bowl mix together the jam and raspberries.
  • Place an even amount of the raspberry filling in the center of each square of puff pastry.
  • Fold each puff pastry square in half diagonally gently pinching around the edges to seal.
  • Carefully transfer the turnovers to a parchment paper lined baking sheet as you finish them making sure they are at least an inch apart.
  • Using a the prongs of a fork carefully press down along the unfolded edges “crimping the pastry dough.
  • Whisk together the egg and water and brush the egg wash over the top of each turnover.
  • Sprinkle the top of each with a little bit of the sugar.
  • Using a small paring knife cut one slit in the top to help with venting.
  • Place your baking sheet in the freezer for approximately 15 minutes.
  • Preheat the oven to 350º while the turnovers are chilling.
  • Once they are finished in the freezer and your oven is preheated bake them until they are a nice golden brown, about 18–20 minutes.
  • Transfer to a cooling rack and allow to sit for 5 minutes before serving.

Recipe—Breakfast Portobellos

Breakfast Portobellos

This is one of those recipes I found on Pinterest and have been meaning to make for quite some time. I only wish I would have made it months ago! It was absolutely delish! Being a semi-frequent low-carb eater I am always looking for new and exciting breakfast recipes. This was completely decadent and unlike anything I had ever had before. The portobellos have this great earthy flavor that is perfectly complemented by the sallty prosciutto, and if you cook them just right you get a nice little bit of yolk to sop up with the mushroom. So I If you are looking to make a fabulous breakfast then give this recipe a try. It would be the perfect dish to serve mom for Mother’s day!

Note: If you end up with shallow mushrooms the eggs may try to slide out of the caps when you put them in, so if you have the ability to examine the underside of the mushrooms look for ones that have a deeper well and are even in depth.

INGREDIENTS
2 large portobello mushrooms (4”–5” in diameter)
olive oil
salt & pepper
3 ounces of sliced prosciutto
4 eggs
1 tbsp fresh chopped parsley

STEPS

  • Wash the portobello caps and pat dry.
  • Using a spoon scrape out the stem and all the gills creating a well in the mushroom cap.
  • Rub the mushrooms with olive oil and then season with salt and pepper.
  • Line each mushroom cap with a couple of slices of the prosciutto making sure to go up the sides. (This will help keep the eggs in if your well isn’t quite large enough to hold two eggs.
  • Place the mushrooms in a glass baking dish.
  • Carefully crack two eggs into each mushroom cap.
  • Carefully place the baking dish in the oven and bake for 20–30 minutes. (Cooking time will depend on the thickness of your mushrooms and how you like your eggs cooked.)
  • Remove the eggs from the oven and garnish with the chopped parsley and additional salt and pepper.

Recipe adapted from Paleo Spirit.

Recipe—Sausage Gravy

DivaDiCucina_SausageGravy

I was never really a huge fan of biscuits and gravy, until I had this recipe. Oh my goodness! Now I am hooked! I am a huge fan of breakfast and this is the perfect side to serve up with some scrambled eggs and potatoes. It is the ultimate in breakfast comfort food (especially after a night of drinking). I actually really like this gravy with Pillsbury biscuits, they are cheap, quick, and convenient. Sausage gravy and biscuits are perfect for a cold winter day and best of all it is super easy to make.

INGREDIENTS
1 lb roll breakfast sausage (not link or patty)
2 tbsp flour
2 c milk
salt and pepper

STEPS

  • In a medium skillet brown the sausage over medium high heat.
  • Remove the sausage when done and set aside.
  • Leaving the drippings in the pan, stir in the flour.
  • Cook over medium heat for 1–2 minutes.
  • Pour in the milk and whisk to combine.
  • Cook over medium or medium-high heat until thickened.
  • Season with salt and pepper.
  • Serve over warm biscuits.

Recipe—Broccoli and Cheddar Egg Bake

DivaDiCucina_BroccoliCheddarBake

A few weeks back I received some violet queen purple broccoli in my produce box. It was the most gorgeous piece of produce I have ever seen! It was almost too pretty to eat… almost being the key word there. I was over the moon about this exciting piece of produce and wanted to do something really spectacular with it. Alas, my busy schedule kept me from really thinking outside the box so I made one of my favorite broccoli recipes with it, a broccoli and cheddar egg bake (a.k.a. a quiche with no crust, perfect for the low-carb lover).

DivaDiCucina_PurpleBroccoli

This purple broccoli was just too pretty not to show you! I just wanted to put it in a vase on my table. Once the broccoli was cooked it looked slightly darker than a typical bunch of green broccoli. It ended up loosing most of that purple coloring.

One thing I truly love about egg bakes is that they are perfect for any meal of the day, breakfast, lunch, or dinner and they are so versatile. You can add any ingredients you want! This recipe is written with some pretty basic ingredients but you can go wild with whatever you like. Red bell peppers and mushrooms are also great additions. I made this one for dinner the other night and just served it with some toast. The leftovers made an awesome breakfast the next day. Gotta love it when you make a meal you can stretch out over a few days.

INGREDIENTS
8 slices of bacon, chopped
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
12 eggs
1/4 c milk
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
2 1/2 c broccoli, chopped and steamed
1 small tomato, chopped
2 c cheddar, shredded (divided)

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • In a skillet over medium-high heat cook your bacon until done.
  • Remove cooked bacon from skillet and dispose of most of the grease leaving a tablespoon.
  • Sauté the onion in the reserved bacon grease over medium-high heat until brown and caramelized.
  • While the onions are cooking scramble the eggs, milk, garlic powder, salt, and pepper in a large mixing bowl.
  • Mix in the bacon, steamed broccoli, chopped tomato, sautéed onion, and 1 1/2 cups of the cheddar cheese to the mixing bowl.
  • Pour the egg mixture in a greased 8” x 8” baking dish.
  • Sprinkle the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese over the top.
  • Bake for 35–45 minutes or until the center is set.
  • Remove the egg bake from the oven and allow it to sit for 5 minutes before cutting and serving.

Recipe—Blueberry Cream Cheese Danishes

I have posted a few recipes now that call for puff pastry. As I have said before it is a great ingredient! I always keep it on hand in the freezer because it is incredibly easy to whip up some quick breakfast pastries. Here is a fabulous recipe for blueberry cream cheese danishes. One thing I love about these is that you can prep the rolls the night before, refrigerate them and then when you wake up in the morning all you have to do is slice and bake. Perfect for all the company you will be having over around the holidays!

Note: You can substitute the blueberries and jam for any flavored fruit jam you have on hand. I’m really fond of apricot too.

INGREDIENTS
4 oz cream cheese, softened
1 tbsp butter, softened
3 tbsp sugar, divided
2 tbsp blueberry jam
1/4 c fresh blueberries, chopped
1 package Pepperidge Farm puff pastry sheets, room temperature
flour for work surface
1 egg
1 tbsp water

STEPS

  • In a small mixing bowl beat together the cream cheese, butter and 1 tbsp sugar until smooth and creamy.
  • Fold in blueberry jam and blueberries making sure not to over stir.
  • Sprinkle flour on the work surface and unfold puff pastry.
  • Evenly spread a thin layer of the cream cheese mixture over the pastry leaving one edge exposed about an inch back.
  • Starting at the edge opposite from the exposed edge roll up like a jelly roll.
  • Wrap your roll in saran wrap and chill in freezer for an hour or fridge for a couple of hours. (This will make it easier to slice through.)
  • Preheat oven to 400º.
  • Beat the egg and water together in a small bowl.
  • Remove the saran wrap and cut roll into 1/2” slices.
  • Place the slices cut side down on a parchment paper lined baking sheet.
  • Brush the top of each spiral with the egg wash and sprinkle with remaining sugar.
  • Bake for 14–16 minutes or until just starting to turn a golden brown.
  • Remove the spirals from the baking sheet and allow to cool.

Recipe—Spiced Carrot Bread

With my produce now being delivered weekly, rather than bi-weekly, I am finding myself with leftover items when the weekend rolls around. This equates to some creative cooking. I still had some giant carrots from the previous week and decided to make some spiced carrot bread with them. This bread is quick and easy to make, the challenge is waiting for it to bake and cool because it smells so incredibly good while in the oven. You just want to eat it right away! My entire house had the aroma of sweet spices wafting around for days, perfect for fall. While this would be fabulous with a cream cheese based frosting, I wanted something that didn’t require refrigeration. It gives the bread just the perfect amount of sweetness. Enjoy it as is for breakfast or topped with whipped cream for dessert, either way you will be indulging your sweet tooth while getting in a healthy serving of veggies.

Note: This recipe makes two loaves of spiced carrot bread. Enjoy one now and freeze one for later! 

BREAD INGREDIENTS
1 c oil
4 eggs
1/2 c buttermilk
1 tbsp vanilla
2 1/2 c sugar
2 c shredded carrots (2–3 large carrots)
4 c flour
1/2  tbsp baking powder
1/2 tbsp salt
1/2 tbsp cinnamon
1/2  tsp baking soda
1/2  tsp nutmeg
1/2  tsp ground ginger
1/4 tsp ground cloves

FROSTING INGREDIENTS
1/4 c butter, melted
1 tbsp water
1 c powdered sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon

BREAD STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 350º.
  • Spray two loaf pans with non-stick cooking spray.
  • In a large bowl whisk together oil, eggs, buttermilk, vanilla, and sugar.
  • Stir in the shredded carrots.
  • In a second large mixing bowl mix together flour, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, baking soda, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves.
  • Slowly add the flour mixture to the wet mixture and stir until well combined.
  • Evenly distribute the batter between the two pans.
  • Bake for 60–70 minutes or until a toothpick comes out almost clean when inserted in the middle.
  • Allow loaves to sit in the pans for 5 minutes and then carefully remove and place on a cutting board or cooling rack.
  • Allow loaves to cool completely before frosting.

FROSTING STEPS

  • Once the loaves have cooled completely stir together the melted butter and water.
  • Add in half of the powdered sugar and beat using the fork until smooth.
  • Add in the remaining powdered sugar and continue beating until the frosting is nice and smooth.
  • Stir in the cinnamon.
  • Transfer the frosting to a pastry bag or a Ziploc bag. (If using a Ziploc bag cut off a small corner of the bag.)
  • Drizzle both loaves with the frosting and allow to set for 15 minutes before slicing.

Recipe—Breakfast Potatoes

These breakfast potatoes are a Sunday brunch must have item. I have been making these potatoes for years now and they are always a big hit. The best way to describe them would be a breakfast version of the garlic fries that you get at the ballpark. But better of course. How can they not be when you add salty bacon and savory mushrooms? When cooking up a big breakfast it’s really nice to be able to put your potatoes in the oven and forget about them while you focus on your other dishes. There always seems to be enough going on up on the stove top. And I must add that these are superb when wrapped in a fresh tortilla with some scrambled eggs and salsa. Gotta love breakfast burritos!

INGREDIENTS
2 lbs baby red potatoes, halved
2 c mushrooms, sliced
1/4 c olive oil
salt and pepper
8 slices of bacon, cooked and chopped
2 tbsp garlic, minced
1/4 c parsley

STEPS

  • Preheat oven to 425º.
  • In a large baking dish toss the potatoes and mushrooms in olive oil.
  • Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Bake for 40 minutes stirring occasionally.
  • Mix in the bacon and garlic and cook for an additional 5 minutes or until potatoes are fork tender.
  • Remove from oven and mix in parsley right before serving.