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Sunday Brunch Potato Egg Cups

I have been making these potato egg cups since my teen years. I think I may have initially learned how to make them in my grade 11 cooking class. They are great to make when you have left over mashed potatoes from the night before.

The secret ingredient in this scrumptious brunch dish is worcestershire  sauce. Just a little splash over the egg brings this dish to a level that adults and children will both enjoy.

To make them, preheat your oven to 425 degrees and grease a baking sheet (or line with parchment paper).

Make a softball sized ball with the mashed potatoes. Place on the baking sheet and flatten slightly.

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Make a large well in the center of the potato and add in an egg.

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Splash a little worcestershire sauce on top of the egg. Garnish with sliced green onion, bacon bits and shredded cheese.

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Sprinkle on salt and pepper to taste.

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Bake for 30 minutes or until cheese bubbling and egg fully cooked.

I like to garnish with a little more green onion before serving.

Enjoy!

Potato Egg Cups
Ingredients
  • mashed potatoes
  • eggs
  • worcestershire sauce
  • green onions sliced
  • bacon bits
  • shredded cheese
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

  2. Grease a baking sheet with non-stick spray or line with parchment paper.

  3. Form a softball sized ball with the mashed potatoes. Place on baking sheet.

  4. Flatten slightly and create a large well in the middle.

  5. Add an egg to the well.

  6. Splash a little Worcestershire sauce onto the egg.

  7. Garnish with green onions, bacon bits, shredded cheese, salt and pepper.

  8. Bake for approximately 30 minutes or until cheese bubbling and egg cooked through.

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Irish Soda Bread with Raisins and Orange

This is not technically a true Irish Soda Bread. Soda bread is traditionally made with only four ingredients: flour, salt, baking soda and sour milk (buttermilk). Baking Soda was introduced to Ireland in the 1840’s as a means to make bread, but soda was actually first used to leaven bread in America by the American Indians. However, the nature of poverty in Ireland made this bread popular and cheap and it became historically associated with that country. The practice of cutting a cross into the top of the bread was believed to ward off evil.

While traditional Irish bread is flavorful and still made and eaten today, I wanted a sweet breakfast bread to eat with my morning coffee so I added a few twists.

This bread is easy and fast to make, unlike yeast breads. No expertise is required!

First, preheat your oven to 350 degrees.

Next whisk together the flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder.

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Cut in the butter (make sure it’s cold) with a pastry cutter until crumbly. Stir in the raisins.

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In a separate bowl, combine the buttermilk, egg, baking soda and orange zest.

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix together with a fork. Mix until just moistened.

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Form a ball with the dough, using your hands and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.

Form an 8-10 inch dome.

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Brush egg whites on top, then generously sprinkle with sugar.

Cut a 1/4 inch deep cross into the bread.

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Bake for 75 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle comes out clean.

Cool on a wire rack.

Slice or pull apart. Serve with butter and jams.

Enjoy!

Orange-Raisin Irish Soda Bread
Ingredients
  • 4 cups flour
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 4 tbsp cold butter
  • 1 1/2 cup raisins
  • 1 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1 tsp baking soda
  • 1 1/2 tsp orange zest
  • 1 egg white for brushing on top
  • 2 tbsp sugar for sprinkling on top
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Whisk together the flour, sugar, salt and baking soda.

  3. Cut in the cold butter using a pastry blender until it becomes crumbly.

  4. Stir in raisins.

  5. In a separate bowl, combine the whole egg, buttermilk, baking soda and orange zest.

  6. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and mix with a fork until moistened.

  7. Using your hands form the dough into a ball and transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet.

  8. Form an 8-10 inch dome and brush the top with the egg white. Generously sprinkle sugar on top.

  9. Cut a 1/4 inch deep cross into the top of the dough.

  10. Bake for 75 minutes or until a toothpick inserted into the middle of the bread comes out clean.

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Dutch Baby Pancake with Sausage and Apricot Filling

This is DELICIOUS. Make it. Eat it. Love it. I don’t need to say anymore. Well, except how to make it.

In a blender combine the eggs, milk, flour, salt and sugar.

Preheat your oven to 400 degrees.

In a large saucepan place 2 tbsp. of butter. Put the saucepan in the oven to heat up the pan and melt the butter.

Once hot, pour the batter into the saucepan and put it back in the oven to bake for about 20 minutes.

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In a separate saucepan cook your sausages until done. Remove them from the pan and cut into round slices. Place them back into the saucepan and add the canned apricot, maple syrup and nutmeg. Heat on medium and toss to combine.

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Once cooked, remove the pancake from the oven. Spoon the filling onto the pancake and serve immediately.

Dutch Baby Pancake with Sausage and Apricot Filling

Ingredients
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1/4 tsp salt
  • 1 tbsp sugar
  • 2 tbsp butter
  • 1 lb sweet sausage links
  • 1 15 oz can apricot halves may sub peaches
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 tsp nutmeg
Instructions
  1. In a blender, combine the eggs, milk, salt and sugar.

  2. Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

  3. Put butter into a large, oven proof skillet and place into the hot oven.


  4. Once the skillet is hot and butter melted and starting to smoke, pour the batter into the skillet.

  5. Bake in the oven for approximately 20 minutes or until puffy and brown.

  6. Meanwhile, in a separate skillet, cook the sausages. Slice into rounds (this is easiest to do after they are cooked)

  7. Add the apricots, maple syrup and nutmeg. Stir well to combine.

  8. Once done, remove the pancake from the oven. Top with the sausages and apricots. Serve immediately.

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How to Make Frittata Fingers. Toddler Friendly Meals Part II

My youngest daughter, Willow, started to self wean at 9 months. By 11 months old she wouldn’t nurse or take formula. I was desperate to find nutrition packed foods for her to eat. I found that frittatas fit that need.

Once you know how to make these (and they are fast AND easy to make) you can play around with the fillings. I have used ham, zucchini, carrots, cauliflower, broccoli, parsnips, and onion in various combinations. Really, whatever you have in your fridge will work.

You absolutely MUST have parchment paper to bake these with. My husband once tried to make them in my loaf pan without the parchment paper and I had to throw the pan out. I could not get it clean. So…line an 8X8 pan with parchment paper first.

You will need about 1 1/2 cups of fillings. The veggies should be grated or finely chopped and then slightly cooked to make them soft. I usually just steam them in the microwave to save time.

Then mix 4 eggs, 1 tbsp. flour, 1/3 cup grated cheese, some salt, pepper and the fillings together in a large bowl. Pour the mixture into the parchment lined pan.

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Bake at 350 degrees for 20-25 minutes, or until set. Remove from oven and cool for 10 minutes.

For the kids, I cut the frittata into fingers. I freeze half by sealing them in press n seal plastic. Lay down one sheet of press n seal, sticky side up. Then place the fingers on top about 2 inches apart. Put a second sheet, sticky side down overtop and press down in between fingers to seal. The frittata fingers reheat well in the microwave.

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The whole family enjoys frittata, not only the toddlers so ENJOY!

Frittata Fingers
Ingredients
  • 4 eggs lightly beaten
  • 1 tbsp flour
  • 1/3 cup grated cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups filling grated or finely chopped. Carrots, zucchini, onion, parsnips, ham
  • salt to taste
  • pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

  2. Lightly steam or saute the vegetables to soften them.

  3. Mix all the ingredients together in a large bowl.

  4. Line an 8X8 pan with parchment paper.

  5. Pour egg mixture into parchment lined pan.

  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until set.

  7. Remove from oven and cool.

  8. Cut into fingers for the kids and enjoy!

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Homemade Granola Bars and Toddler Peanut Butter Bites

I’ve been debating on whether I should write this recipe as gourmet granola bars or toddler bites. You can easily adjust this recipe to make either. I couldn’t decide, so I’m going to explain how to make both versions of this So whether you’re a mom of toddlers, teenagers, or just like granola, this recipe will work for you.

I’m actually eating one of these granola bars right now. They are sweet, salty and tart all at the same time. I worked on this recipe for quite awhile. First the bars were too soft, then too hard, then not enough peanut butter et cetera, et cetera. Feel free to play with it a bit yourself to get it exactly right for you. You can switch up the ingredients and the boiling time of the sugars to change the taste and consistency.

First, in a large bowl combine the rolled oats, dried cherries (you can substitute in raisins for toddlers) and whole almonds. Leave out the almonds if making toddler bites. They are a choking hazard.

Then line an 8X8 pan with parchment paper. It doesn’t need to be perfectly lined. The bars will push the paper flat.

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Now mix your honey and brown sugar together in a medium sized saucepan.

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Heat on medium heat, stirring to dissolve the sugar, until boiling. (To get a firmer consistency boil for 30-60 seconds).

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Turn off the heat, but leave the saucepan on the element.

Stir in the salt and peanut butter until smooth. (I leave out the salt for toddler bites.)

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Pour the sugar/peanut butter mixture into the bowl with the rolled oats. Mix well.

Press the mixture into the parchment lined pan. Don’t panic, the mixture takes several minutes to set, so you have time to press it down evenly.

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Let the bars cool slightly and then sprinkle the chocolate chips on top. Press the chips firmly into the mixture.

Place the pan immediately into the fridge to prevent the chips from melting.

After about 30 minutes you can remove the pan from the fridge and cut into bars or 1 inch toddler bites. Enjoy!

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Note: you cannot give honey (even cooked) to a child younger than a year.

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Homemade Granola Bars and Peanut Butter Toddler Bites
Ingredients
  • 2 cups rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup dried cherries may sub raisins
  • 1/2 cup whole almonds
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup brown sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 3/4 cup peanut butter
  • 4 tbsp chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. In a large bowl, mix together the rolled oats, dried cherries or raisins and almonds. Do not use the almonds if making toddler bites - they are a choking hazard.

  2. On medium heat, mix together the honey and brown sugar in a saucepan. Bring to a boil and turn heat off, but leave saucepan on the element.

  3. Mix in the salt and peanut butter until smooth.

  4. Add the peanut butter/honey mixture to the bowl with rolled oats. Mix well to evenly combine.

  5. Press mixture evenly into a parchment lined 8X8 pan. Allow to cool slightly.

  6. Sprinkle chocolate chips overtop and press firmly into the mixture.

  7. Immediately place the pan in the fridge to prevent the chocolate chips from melting.

  8. After 30 minutes in the fridge, remove the pan and cut into bars or 1 inch X 1 inch bites.

Recipe Notes

Toddler bites: sub out cherries for raisins. Eliminate almonds. Cut into 1 inch squares.

Consistency: if bars are too soft for your liking, boil the honey/sugar mixture for 30-60 seconds.

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Hungarian Sour Cherry Cake

As a kid, I had a Hungarian friend. Her family always made this cake. I LOVED it. I have been thinking about it for over 20 years, but I have never seen sour cherries for sale. Until last week…when I saw canned tart red cherries for sale in my local grocery store. I was so excited. This is the best coffee type cake I have ever had. Both sweet and tart at the same time, I can eat an entire pan.

You can use fresh or frozen sour cherries if you can find them. I found the canned tart cherries at King’s Supermarket.

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This cake is pretty easy to make. First drain your cherries and then coat them in 1 tbsp. of flour. Set aside.

In a medium sized bowl, mix together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Set aside.

In a large bowl, cream together the softened butter, sugar, grand marnier and vanilla. Once the mixture is fluffy, beat in the egg.

Add 1/2 the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Beat well to thoroughly combine. Then add 1/2 the milk. Again, beat well to combine. Then repeat with the remaining flour and  milk. The batter will be the consistency of icing.

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Scoop the batter into a greased 9X13 pan. Sprinkle the cherries on top and bake for 25-30 minutes at 375 degrees.

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Hungarian Sour Cherry Cake
Ingredients
  • 14 oz canned tart red cherries or 2 cups fresh/frozen sour cherries
  • 2 cups flour plus 1 tbsp
  • 1/2 tbsp baking powder
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup softened unsalted butter
  • 1 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 2 tbsp Grand Marnier
  • 1 egg
  • 1/2 cup milk
Instructions
  1. Drain cherries and toss with 1 tbsp. of flour. Set aside.

  2. In a medium bowl, combine the flour, salt and baking powder. Mix well.

  3. In a large bowl, cream together the butter, sugar, vanilla and grand marnier. Once fluffy, beat in the egg.

  4. Add 1/2 the flour mixture to the butter mixture. Beat well to fully combine.

  5. Add 1/2 the milk and beat well to combine. Repeat with remaining flour and milk.

  6. Scoop batter (it will be thick) into a greased 9X13 pan. Sprinkle cherries overtop.

  7. Bake at 375 degrees for 25-30 minutes. 

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Filled Doughknots – Sweet, Buttery Layers of Knotted Dough Filled With Jam or Nutella

I love a good morning pastry. Breakfast is my favorite meal of the day and I make coffee ALL DAY LONG to prolong the experience. Coffee and sweets definitely make my toddler filled life a little bit sweeter and much more tolerable. (And a glass of wine at the end of the day helps too!)

I worked on these doughknots for weeks. I was inspired by a recipe for Cruffins, which were invented at a bakery in San Fransisco. Worked into a knot instead of folded and rolled like a croissant, they are a cross between a croissant and a muffin. But I didn’t like the dough. It wasn’t really “croissant like” to me. I also found the recipe overly complicated. So I played around with a sweet dough recipe of my own and after about 10 attempts, ended up with these scrumptious doughknots! If I ever follow my dream of opening a café, these will always adorn my counter.

Here’s how to make this simple, delicious morning pastry.

First combine your dry ingredients in a stand mixer bowl (or a large bowl if hand kneading).

In a small bowl, combine your milk, melted butter and vanilla (it’s okay if your butter clumps a little from the cold milk).

Add the wet ingredients to the dry and knead by hand or with your stand mixer dough hook until the dough is smooth and elastic. When is your dough ready? Cut off a small piece after about 8 minutes and spread it with your fingers to make it as thin as you can. If you can get it thin enough to see light through it, without it breaking apart, it’s ready.

Place your dough in a greased bowl. Turn the dough around to grease all sides. Cover the bowl loosely with plastic wrap and put it in a cold oven, with the light on, to rise. Leave until it doubles in size. This takes about two hours (it’s a slow rise due to all that milk).

Once doubled, punch the dough down and turn it out onto your counter. You don’t need to flour the counter, this is a slightly greasy dough thanks to the butter.

Cut into 8 equally sized pieces. Roll each piece into a ball.

Using a rolling pin, roll out each ball into a long rectangle, about 5 inches wide. Butter it to help keep the layers separate.

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Roll from the short end, like a jelly roll, to make a short, thick roll.

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With a sharp knife, cut the roll lengthwise.

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Roll each piece like a snail. Place in a greased muffin tin.

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Let these rise for another 30 minutes.

Bake at 350 degrees for 35 minutes, or until golden brown and baked through.

Cool completely on a wire rack.

Cut out center with a sharp knife or cupcake corer. I cut a hole that went about 1/2 of the way through the doughknot. Make it slightly less deep if filling with Nutella. That stuff goes a long ways!

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Fill with jam or Nutella (I just put a small amount in a ziplock bag, cut a corner, and piped it it).

Sprinkle with powdered sugar and enjoy!

Filled Doughknots
Ingredients
  • 4 1/2 cups flour
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 pkg instant yeast
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup melted butter more for spreading
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • nutella or jam for filling
  • powdered sugar
Instructions
  1. In a stand mixer or large bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, salt and instant yeast.

  2. In a small bowl, combine the milk, melted butter and vanilla.

  3. Add the wet ingredients to the dry ingredients and mix thoroughly.

  4. Using a dough hook in your stand mixer, knead dough for about 8 minutes or until smooth and elastic. The dough should not break when stretched thin. (alternately, hand knead for about 15 minutes.

  5. Put dough in a greased bowl, turn it around so all sides of dough are greased. 

  6. Cover bowl with plastic wrap and place in a warm spot (I use a cold oven with the light on) until dough doubles in size (about 2 hours)

  7. Punch dough down and turn out onto your counter. Cut dough into 8 equally sized portions.

  8. Roll each portion into a ball.

  9. With a rolling pin, roll out each ball into a long rectangle, about 5 inches wide. Get it as thin as you can.

  10. Butter the rectangle. (This will help keep your layers separate.)

  11. Roll the rectangle into a jelly roll, starting at the short end, to make a short, thick roll.

  12. With a very sharp knife, cut the roll lengthwise.

  13. Roll each piece like a snail (this is called a knot)

  14. Place into a greased muffin tin and allow to rise for another 30 minutes

  15. Bake at 350 for approximately 35 minutes or until golden brown and cooked through.

  16. Cool on a wire rack.

  17. When completely cooled, cut center out with a cupcake corer or a sharp knife and fill with jam or Nutella (I make hole about 1/2 way through the cupcake).

  18. Sprinkle with powdered sugar. Enjoy!