"The Holiday Brunch"

"Cooking is like love, it must be entered into with abandon or not at all."

This is one of my favorite quotes and, in a sense, encapsulates who I am as a person and a Chef..

Now I'm sure that more then a few of you could agree that each and every year sees the holiday season come quicker and quicker; so that before you know it the kids have no sooner gone back to school then a crazy headlong rush to New Years Eve has begun, with decorations for Christmas competing with Halloween and Thanksgiving from the end of August onwards..

It becomes such a mad dash, and with the commercialized bombardment of each new holiday as it nears, an almost mind numbing onslaught..

It's truly times like these that I wish I could go back to when I thought things were simpler, warmer and more heartwarming..

To those days, as I kid, when the family's would gather around each new holiday and take their time, tell stories, hold grandchildren and relax in the warm glow of the holiday spirit..

To often it becomes about the gifts and the next big thing, instead of treasuring the time we have with those we love and cherish on this earth..
 
I think as I've gained in age, if not always in wisdom, I've come to regret not always remembering what truly should have mattered to me all along..

Now, with finally coming back to a place to call home and a community to share with, I've wanted to start some new but old traditions in me and my Baby's home..
 
The first one I'd like to talk to you about is the return of the "Holiday Brunch"

To me this idea reminds of early mornings at my Granny's house with the family gathered around talking, eating and opening presents slowly all morning long..

Nothing could feel better then the idea of having a large gathering of family in the house just spending time together, it's really what the Holiday's should be about after all..

As much as I love food, cooking and photography I could go on and on about each and every dish, from the tastes and aromas all the way to the lighting and display; but for today let me just say that a brunch is one of those meals that can truly run the gamut of tastes and flavors..

Being a mix of breakfast, lunch and dessert dishes gives you the freedom to truly get creative both in your presentation and choices. For me though, for this year, I wanted some simple, easy, warm and comforting dishes to choose from..

After a couple of trips to places like Pat's Marketplace and Gemelli's I got started on what would be my food fare for the family on Christmas morning..

Remember the choice is yours on what to make and the possibilities can be truly endless..

So this year I'm bringing it back, for my family and friends, and maybe with this for a little inspiration you might do it to..

Because it is, oh so, "Definitely Delish"

"Banana French Toast Bake"
This is one of my nieces personal favorites no matter what time of year, or time of day, it is...
I love it because it can be done a day or two ahead and kept refrigerated until you're ready to cook...

Ingredients:
French Toast:
4-5 small packages King's Hawaiian Rolls
1 8 oz. package Cream Cheese
2-3 Bananas, Sliced
6 Eggs
2 cups of Milk
2 cups of Half and Half
1/4 cup Sugar
1/4 Maple Syrup
1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon

Maple Vanilla Sauce:
1/2 cup Light Brown Sugar
2 tablespoons Maple Syrup
1/2 cup Heavy Cream
4 tablespoons Butter
1 teaspoon Vanilla Extract

Directions:
1. Cut King's Hawaiian Rolls into 1 inch cubes and place on baking sheet..
2. Bake in oven at 400 degrees for several minutes, until buns dry and turn slightly golden
in color..
3. Place half the cubes into a Baking dish or foil wrapped spring-form pan..
4. Cut cream cheese into small cubes and place over bread in dish. Top with sliced Bananas, 
then cover with remaining bread cubes. (You can also mix in Chocolate chips if desired)

5. In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add milk, half & half, sugar, syrup and cinnamon-mix well..
6. Pour mixture over bread, cover and refrigerate 8 hours-or overnight..
7. Remove from refrigerator approximately 30 minutes before cooking and cover with foil.
8. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees, then bake covered for 30 minutes..
9. Uncover and continue baking 25-30 minutes more, until a knife inserted into center comes
out clean..
10. To make the Maple Vanilla Sauce; combine all ingredients except Vanilla extract in a
saucepan and bring to a boil, lowering heat and simmering for 5 minutes. Remove from heat
and add vanilla..
11. Serve "French Toast Bake" warm with Maple Vanilla sauce drizzled over top and dusted with powdered sugar..

"No Fuss Eggs Benedict"
When cooking for a crowd it's always helpful when you can make multiple
dishes together or in the same pan. For this Brunch I did a mix of several of
these time saving techniques, such as store bought pie dough and using the
same pan for the candian bacon, bacon, sausage and chicken fried steaks.
The last trick used the pot I was cooking pasta in to help me with these
delish devils...

Ingredients:
English Muffins (as many or as few as you want to make)
Eggs (You'll need one for each Eggs Benedict)
Canadian Bacon (Again one for each sandwich)
Holandaise Sauce mix (I used Knorr's brand but any will do and home
made, time permitting, is always the best
)
1 cup of Milk
2 tablespoons unsalted Butter
Freeze dried or Fresh chopped Parsley

Other:
Pam or other Non-stick cooking spray
Plastic Wrap

Directions:
1. Mix powdered Hollandaise sauce mix with milk and butter in a small saucepan and heat stirring over medium heat. Set aside till needed (if it thickens or cools to much, add a tablespoon of water and heat till smoothand creamy)
2. Using a separate pot of water on the stove; bring it to a low boil, then go on to step 3. (I used the pot of water I was making my Pasta in for the brunch I was preparing)
3. Using a small bowl (like a ice cream cup); take a 1 foot section of plastic wrap and place over the bowl in center pushing down making and
indentation. Spray the plastic wrap with the cooking spray, then crack an
egg into the center of the bowl. Wrap the sides of plastic wrap around the
raw egg creating a bag or pouch, then set aside and repeat with the
remaining eggs you are using (as many eggs for as many Eggs Benedict you
are making
)

4. Toss the plastic wrapped egg pouches into the boiling water for 4 minutes; meanwhile slice and toast your English muffin halves, while frying the Canadian bacon in a pan..
5. Using a slotted spoon remove the eggs from the water and set aside till
cool enough to touch while you finish toasting and frying..
6. Now arrange your muffin halves on a tray; set one piece of Canadian bacon on top of each, then carefully open the plastic wrap and place one perfectly poached egg on top..
7. Now using a spoon, drizzle the hollandaise sauce over each-followed by a pinch of parsley for garnish.. 

Since learning this trick I've yet to fail in poaching an egg for just about any dish I've wanted to use one in, where as before I almost never got it cooked right..

"Vodka Sauce with Pancetta and Peas"
—I love this one for any meal, Brunch or otherwise, because it is such a
simple sauce to make but is always full of a wonderful amount of flavor. It's
definitely a recipe that's sure to please any guests.

Ingredients:
3 tablespoons Unsalted Butter
2 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped
1 28 oz. can Crushed Tomatoes
1/4 teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
1/2 cup of Heavy Cream
1/4 cup of Vodka (I always keep a bottle of our LIV Vodka from our local Long Island distillery on hand for this recipe)
4-6 ounces thick cut chopped Pancetta
1/2 cup of Frozen Peas (more if desired)
1/4 cup Parmesan cheese, shaved (extra on side for guests)
Sea Salt & Ground Pepper
2-3 Tablespoons Fresh chopped Italian Parsley
1 pound Penne Pasta

Directions:
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil and add Penne pasta,
cooking til al dente-aproximately 11-13 minutes..
2. Meanwhile, in a large deep Skillet, melt butter over medium heat. Add
Garlic and cook until golden, aproximately 2 minutes. Add Pancetta and
cook for 2 minutes more-remove to towle to drain..
3. Add Crushed Tomatoes and red pepper flakes and simmer for 5-6 minutes..
4. Stir in Heavy cream and, stirring well, for 1 minute..
5. Add Vodka and continue stirring for 2 minutes more, season with salt and pepper..
6. Toss drained pasta with sauce, pancetta, peas, parsley and cheese-mixing well..
7. Serve garnished with additional cheese and parsley on top..

"Apple Cinnamon Galette"
One of my favorite things in the world is apple pie; that is why for a Brunch (when time is limited) I love taking out this simple french pastry technique, the Galette, to wow my audience. Always looks so amazing, and the taste, it never disappoints...

Ingredients:
2 Rome, or other large Apples
1 Stick of unsalted Butter
2-3 tablespoons of Organic Sugar
1/2 teaspoon of Cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon of Nutmeg
1/4 cup of Sliced Almonds
1 package Pillsbury pre-made pie dough (You can make your own, but when creating so many dishes it can be a life saver to use pre-made)
1/2 teaspoon of Cinnamon Sugar (McCormick, or your preferred brand)
1 tablespoon Sugar in the Raw (Turbinado Sugar)
1 Egg +1 teaspoon of Water (for Egg wash)

Directions:
1. Set butter in dish and allow to soften at room temperature (do not microwave), when the butter has softened enough to work with; add cinnamon, nutmeg and organic sugar then mix together well-adjust cinnamon and sugar til it reaches desired taste..
2. Then take your sliced almonds and crush them using a food processor into smaller pieces, mix the almond pieces with the cinnamon sugar spread till well combined.. 
3. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees f. Now core both apples; cutting them in half from top down afterwards, leaving you with two equal halves. Preferably using a mandolin slicer (but a sharp knife and steady hand will do), slice apples creating slices about 1/8 inch or more in thickness. Set aside til ready..
4. Take out one sheet of pie dough from package; roll it out onto a lightly floured piece of parchment paper, then spread the Cinnamon Almond Sugar Spread onto the center of the dough leaving a border about one inch from the edge clean..

5. In a circular pattern arrange apple slices; start from either the outside in or a spiral from the center out, this is more personal preference but it'll create a lovely look when baked and served..
6. Mix egg and water in a glass and using a pastry brush (basting brush), brush down the edge of pie dough-folding it over top of the edge of the apples. After working all the way around the Galette, brush down the pie dough on top and then sprinkle with the Turbinado sugar..
7. Take a few dash of cinnamon sugar and sprinkle it over the exposed apple slices; then set it in the oven to cook for approximately 60-65 minutes, the dough will turn nicely golden brown and the apples will soften when finished. (It can be made quicker at 425 degrees for 35-40 minutes if made by itself-to ensure several items for the brunch were done at the same time, I adjusted accordingly)
8. Serve alone or ala mode with Ice Cream, or homemade whipped cream..

“Vegetable Frittata with Pancetta and Cheese”
If you’ve never tried a frittata before, they are this incredibly versatile dish that is more than an omelet but less than a quiche. It’ll taste as good cold or room temperature as it does fresh from the oven; and luckily, it is also a dish you can prepare ahead of time. Thus making it a perfect accompaniment to your Holiday brunch..

Ingredients: 
6 ounces diced Pancetta (you can use boars head brand diced pancetta available at Pat’s market as well as Stop and Shop’s in your neighborhood-optionally you can use 4 slices chopped cooked bacon)
1 small Vidalia onion, sliced
Several baby Bell mushrooms, sliced
7-8 Eggs, at room temperature
3 tablespoons Cream
2-3 tablespoons Butter, just barely melted
2 teaspoons Olive Oil, plus additional butter for sautéing vegetables
6-8 Fingerling potatoes, sliced (I used a mix of gold and purple potatoes)
Asparagus, woody ends removed and cut into 2-3 inch long pieces
Grape tomatoes, a handful sliced in half (I used mini Marzano tomatoes available at Pat’s marketplace)
2-3 tablespoons Bel Gioioso Asiago, thinly shaved (though regular Asiago is also fine to use)
1-2 tablespoons Locatelli Romano (regular Romano cheese is also fine to use)
Fresh chopped Italian parsley
Sea Salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
Dash of Cayenne pepper

Directions:
1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees, wrap a tart pan (if it one with a removable base) in foil and spray with cooking spray..
2. In a separate skillet, cook diced pancetta until it begins to crisp and place on paper towels to drain..
3. In same skillet heat the olive oil over medium high heat and cook the onions and mushrooms until they begin to brown, 10-20 minutes. (Add a teaspoon of butter if necessary)
4. Meanwhile slice and chop all other vegetables as needed, then crack eggs into a bowl and continue to let them reach room temperature. (cold eggs take longer to cook)

5. Remove Onion and Mushroom from skillet and set aside, then add a touch of butter to pan and cook thin sliced potatoes for 5-10 minutes until lightly browned. Remove and set aside, then finish by cooking the Asparagus in the same skillet for 5 minutes, till crisp tender..
6. Add half or more of the various vegetables (tomatoes, potatoes, etc.) and pancetta to the tart pan, then sprinkle with 2-3 tablespoons of the cheeses..
7. Now prepare the eggs by just barely melting the room temperature butter and adding it to the eggs along with 2-3 tablespoons of cream, salt, pepper and cayenne. Whisk gently, but be careful not to over-beat the eggs-then pour into your tart pan..
8. Finish by adding more of your cooked ingredients, as well as a few sliced tomatoes and a last sprinkling of cheese-then place into the oven to bake for 20-25 minutes (or until just set, but be careful not to overcook). Let the frittata cool for a few minutes before unwrapping foil and removing it from the pan..

Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and enjoy..

"Vegetable Frittata" With "Pancetta & Cheese"

The wonders of buttered eggs. I had never thought or heard of buttered eggs until reading one I discovered, what the French have never forgotten, the joys of hot buttered eggs..

As John Masefield writes- “Time, Tide and buttered eggs wait for no man…

 

So taking this new found knowledge, on how to create the silkiest eggs you’ve ever tasted, I applied it to the creation of the most wonderful custard'y textured frittata I had ever had.

If you’ve never tried a frittata before, they are this incredibly versatile dish that is more than an omelet but less than a quiche. It’ll taste as good cold or room temperature as it does fresh from the oven; and luckily, it is also a dish you can prepare ahead of time. Thus making it a perfect accompaniment to any Holiday brunch..

 

“Vegetable Frittata with Pancetta and Cheese”

Ingredients: 
6 ounces diced Pancetta (you can use boars head brand diced pancetta available at Pat’s market as well as Stop and Shop’s in your neighborhood-optionally you can use 4 slices chopped cooked bacon)
1 small Vidalia onion, sliced
Several baby Bell mushrooms, sliced
7-8 Eggs, at room temperature
3 tablespoons Cream
2-3 tablespoons Butter, just barely melted
2 teaspoons Olive Oil, plus additional butter for sautéing vegetables
6-8 Fingerling potatoes, sliced (I used a mix of gold and purple potatoes)
Asparagus, woody ends removed and cut into 2-3 inch long pieces
Grape tomatoes, a handful sliced in half (I used mini Marzano tomatoes available at Pat’s marketplace)
2-3 tablespoons Bel Gioioso Asiago, thinly shaved (though regular Asiago is also fine to use)
1-2 tablespoons Locatelli Romano (regular Romano cheese is also fine to use)
Fresh chopped Italian parsley
Sea Salt and fresh cracked black pepper to taste
Dash of Cayenne pepper

Directions:
1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees, wrap the outside of a tart pan (if it is one with a removable base) tightly in foil and spray inside with cooking spray..
2. In a separate skillet, cook diced pancetta until it begins to crisp and place on paper towels to drain..
3.
In same skillet heat the olive oil over medium high heat and cook the onions and mushrooms until they begin to brown, 10-20 minutes. (Add a teaspoon of butter if necessary)
4. Meanwhile slice and chop all other vegetables as needed, then crack eggs into a bowl and continue to let them reach room temperature. (cold eggs take longer to cook and will cause the melted butter to solidify)

5. Remove Onion and Mushroom from skillet and set aside, then add a touch of butter to pan and cook thin sliced potatoes for 5-10 minutes until lightly browned. Remove and set aside, then finish by cooking the Asparagus in the same skillet for 5 minutes, till crisp tender..
6. Add half or more of the various vegetables (tomatoes, potatoes, etc.) and pancetta to the tart pan, then sprinkle with 2-3 tablespoons of the cheeses..
7. Now prepare the eggs by just barely melting the room temperature butter and adding it to the eggs along with 2-3 tablespoons of cream, salt, pepper and cayenne. Whisk gently, but be careful not to overbeat the eggs-then pour into your tart pan..
8. Finish by adding more of your cooked ingredients, as well as a few sliced tomatoes and a last sprinkling of cheese-then place into the oven to bake for 20-25 minutes (or until just set, but be careful not to overcook). Let the frittata cool for a few minutes before unwrapping foil and removing it from the pan..

Garnish with fresh chopped parsley and enjoy..

"BLT Sandwich Casserole"

"BLT Sandwich Casserole"

I always enjoy finding or creating recipes that can be made to fit any day or occasion...

This is one of those...

Whether it's breakfast or brunch, dinner or lunch—this "BLT Casserole" is just perfect for serving for family or friends...

Mine was made with a mix of homemade and locally sourced ingredients; but, of course, you could save yourself time by just going to your local supermarket for the bread and other ingredients—absolutely nothing wrong with that, I do it myself when I need too...

"Sourdough BLT Casserole"

 

 

This time though I decided to go the extra mile by making my own Sourdough from scratch (see the recipe in the Recipe Redux section of the Blog) as well as going to local farms for the fresh eggs, lettuce, tomatoes and bacon—nothing quite like farm fresh if you ask me...

After taking out some of my frozen chicken stock to thaw, I then whipped up some of Julia Child's foolproof mayonnaise—then it was time to work...

 

Cutting, toasting, slicing, chopping and then oven baking some bacon later—it was time to toss everything together and dump it into my oval roaster to bake for Brunch...

Already the house was smelling divine from all of the various parts involved in creating this dish; but after 45 minutes more of it all in the oven, my mouth was truly salivating at the thought of digging in...

 

 

A last couple of minutes under the broiler after brushing it down with some bacon fat (Mmm, bacon) and it was finally time to eat...

So good and so filling; truly a scrumptious, salty, savory dish for anytime of day or night and oh so "Definitely Delish"

 

 

"Bacon, Lettuce & Tomato Sandwich Bake"

"BLT Casserole

Ingredients:
12-16 ounces crusty Sourdough bread cut into 1" cubes (about 8 cups)
1 pound thick-cut applewood smoked bacon, cut crosswise into 1" pieces
3 large farm fresh eggs
1 1/4 cups low-sodium organic chicken stock
1/2 cup organic Mayonnaise
1 teaspoon Himalayan salt or Sea salt
3/4 teaspoon freshly ground white pepper
1 pint grape sized heirloom tomatoes, halved
1 head local farmed butter lettuce, washed, dried very well, cut into 1" slices
1 tablespoon chopped chives, for garnish
1 tablespoon chopped Parsley, for garnish 

"Great For Anytime, Day Or Night"

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Spread bread in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake, tossing once, until dry to the touch and slightly toasted, about 10 minutes. Let cool slightly....
2. Meanwhile, cook bacon in a large skillet over medium-high heat, stirring occasionally, until fat starts to render and bacon browns, about 15 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer bacon to a small bowl, reserving 3 Tbsp. fat.
3. Whisk eggs, stock, mayonnaise, salt, pepper, and 2 Tbsp. bacon fat in a large bowl...
4. Add bread and gently toss to combine. Add bacon and tomatoes and stir to combine. Let sit until bread has absorbed most of the liquid, about 15 minutes...
5. Reduce oven temperature to 325°F. Add lettuce to bread mixture and stir to combine. Transfer the mixture to a 13 x 9 inch baking dish and bake until top is golden brown, about 45 minutes...
6. Brush surface with remaining 1 Tbsp. bacon fat, turn broiler on, and continue baking until tops of bread are glistening and well toasted, 3–5 minutes more...
7. Garnish with parsley & chives, if using, and serve immediately...

"BLT Sammie Casserole"

Notes:
1. For the Bacon I used the oven cooking method; place bacon inside of a baking dish or on a rack inside of one and cook in a pre-heated 400 degree Fahrenheit oven for 20 minutes-or until nicely browned. (Alternatively you can cook inside of a pan on the stove top)
2. If you want you can use any bakery bread you prefer, from wheat to pumpernickel- it's up to your own personal preference...

"Spiced French Toast Bake"

"Spiced French Toast Bake"

I find that creating breakfast recipes can be some of the toughest to do...

I mean there's only so many ways to scramble an egg or make an omelette, waffle or French toast...

An though I've still attempted it by tweaking an "Eggs Benedict" using "English" crumpets and "Kobe-Wagyu" sirloin burgers or by layering a "Frittata" with potatoes, pancetta, mushrooms, asparagus and cheese—I still find it tough to find a technique or addition to make a breakfast recipe truly my own...

"Farm Fresh, Organic & Homemade"

"Farm Fresh, Organic & Homemade"

This is one of those...

Taking a personal love of all things bread related; I took buttered toast for breakfast, along with my French Toast recipe and decided to combine the two together with a twist...

Taking cues from a "New Orleans" style Bread Pudding (which has been much on my mind as me and my Baby plan our return trip); I played around with the ingredients and after a night at rest, me and my Baby were blessed to have this beautiful symphony of sweet and spicy ingredients slowly baking in the oven...

"Sweet, Spicy & Buttery"

Once done, and dusted with powdered sugar, it was ready to be served up with some pure organic maple syrup...

Such a serendipitously satisfying selection to soothe both your hunger and your sweet tooth at the same time...

So try out my "Spiced French Toast Bake" yourself; I think you'll find that it is,
oh so "Definitely Delish

"Sweet & Spicy Sliced French Toast" 

"Spiced French Toast Bake"

Ingredients:
1 loaf of fresh made Whole Wheat Bread, cut into 14 slices
3 tablespoons unsalted Irish Butter, softened
6 tablespoons granulated organic Sugar
Zest of 1/2 lemon
2 teaspoons Vanilla extract
6 farm fresh Eggs
2 cups Whole Milk
1 cup Light Cream
1 tablespoon Amber Rum
1/2 teaspoon ground Cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon of ground Cloves, Allspice & Nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon Pink Himalayan Salt or Sea Salt
Powdered sugar, for dusting
Organic Maple syrup to finish (optional)

Directions:
1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Slice your bread into 14 slices and then diagonally into triangles. Arrange them on a large baking tray and bake for 5 to 10 minutes, until firm to the touch but not yet browned. You can flip halfway through baking...
2. Lightly butter a 9×13-inch or other 3-quart casserole dish with 1 tablespoon of softened butter. Melt the remaining butter in a dish and using a silicone basting brush, brush each slice of bread after they're done in the oven...
3. Fan your bread slices out into the pan. Now place sugar and lemon zest in the bottom of a small dish and use your fingertips to rub the zest into the sugar, so it breaks up a bit and also releases the most flavor. Sprinkle half of lemon sugar over bread inside your casserole dish...
4. Whisk eggs in a large bowl; then slowly whisk in the cream and milk, followed by the ground spices...
5. Stir in vanilla, rum and salt. Pour custard slowly and evenly over bread and sugar, then sprinkle with the remaining lemon sugar... 
6. Let mixture soak covered overnight in the fridge. If pressed for time you can let it sit for 30 minutes on the counter instead before baking, but overnight is better...

"French Toast Bread Pudding"

7. When ready, heat oven to 365 degrees. Loosely cover the "French Toast Bake" with foil and bake for 15 minutes on the middle (or just below middle) rack of the oven. Remove foil and bake for approximately 30 minutes more, until a knife inserted into the center of the casserole and turned slightly causes no liquid custard to spill into the crack. (This can vary by the density of your bread; it can sometimes take longer to finish. Check regularly till done every couple of minutes)
8. Let cool slightly before serving. Dust with powdered sugar and serve with maple syrup on the side, if desired...

"Spiced French Toast"

"Sweet, Spicy & Delicious"

"Buttered Toast, French Toast And Bread Pudding Together At Last"

"Perfect on a Sunday Morning"

"Oia, Santorini - Somber Shades by R.Fisher"

"Kobe-Wagyu Burger Benedict with Avocado"

"Kobe-Wagyu Sirloin Burger Eggs Benedict" with "Avocado" and "Peppered Asiago" on top of a buttered & toasted "English Crumpet"

It's been a rough couple of weeks for cooking; between my birthday, the holiday, doctors and other things—just hasn't seemed like I had it in me to do much in the kitchen...
Now, though, after a week or so of abject laziness on my part, or so it might have appeared, I've decided to jump back in with a simple "Sunday Brunch" style dish with a tiny twist all my own...
So feast your eyes on the yummy pictures because this week we're pretty much heading straight to the recipes; give it a try yourself, all or in parts, I think you'll find it to be oh so "Definitely Delish"

 

"English Crumpet"

"English Crumpet"

"Warm Crumpets"

Ingredients:
1 3/4 cups plain flour (all purpose)
1 level teaspoon salt
1 level tablespoon dried yeast
1 level teaspoon caster sugar (regular sugar will also work)
1/2 pint milk (just over 1 cup. You may need a little more.)
6 Tablespoons cold water

Note:
You need some egg rings or metal rings to shape the crumpets when they are cooking. If you don’t have, use a clean shallow can with both ends removed...

"Eggs Benedict"

Directions:
1. In a jug measure out the milk and place in the microwave for 80 seconds. It needs to be warm to touch and NOT hot. Then add the 6 tablespoons of cold water, stir and then stir in the sugar and dried yeast and leave it in a warm place for 10-15 minutes till there is a good frothy head on it...
2. Sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl, make a well in the center then, when the yeast mixture is frothy, pour it all in. Next use a wooden spoon or hand whisk, to work the flour into the liquid gradually and beat well at the end to make a perfectly smooth batter. The batter should be like pouring consistency, a bit like drinking yogurt. Not thick. If it is too thick, add more milk until it is loose enough...
3. Cover the basin with a tea-towel and leave to stand in a warm place for about 45 minutes - by which time, the batter will have become light and frothy...
4. Then we cook the crumpets: grease the insides of the egg rings well, and grease the frying pan as well before placing it over a LOW heat. I put some vegetable oil in a bowl and keep it handy to brush the pan & rings...
5. Arrange the rings in the frying pan and, when the pan is hot, spoon 2 tablespoons of the crumpet batter into each ring. Depending on the size of your rings, the batter should be 1 inch high...
6. Let them cook for 4 or 5 minutes: First tiny bubbles will appear on the surface and then, suddenly, they will burst, leaving the traditional holes...
7. When your crumpets look like they're beginning to set, this is when you need to take a knife and go around the inside to release the crumpet (it might have stuck to the ring) and carefully push the crumpet through onto the pan and then they are ready to carefully turn over. It is only when you see the holes and the surface begin to set, you need to release the crumpet from the ring and turn them...
8. Please be careful when touching the rings..they will be hot! So use a cloth...
9. Now take a large spoon and fork, lift off the rings and turn the crumpets over. Cook the crumpets on the second side for about 1 minute only. Re-grease and reheat the rings and pan before cooking the next batch of crumpets...
10. Serve the crumpets while still warm, generously buttered. If you are making crumpets in advance, then reheat them by toasting lightly on both sides before serving...

"Creamy  Hollandaise  Sauce"

"Creamy Hollandaise Sauce"


"Hollandaise Sauce"

Ingredients:
3 egg yolks
1 tablespoon cream
1 cup (1/2 pound) melted butter, cooled to room temperature
2/3 tablespoon lemon juice
1/2 teaspoon salt
Dash of cayenne pepper
 
Directions:
1. Use a small, thick ceramic bowl set in a heavy-bottomed pan, or a heavyweight double boiler. Off the heat, put the egg yolks and cream in the bowl or upper section of the double boiler and stir with a wire whisk until well-blended — the mixture should never be beaten but stirred, evenly, vigorously and continually...
2. Place the container over hot water (if you are setting the bowl in water, there should be about 1 1/2 inches of water in the pan; in a double boiler, the water should not touch the top section)...
3. Stirring eggs continuously, bring the water slowly to a simmer. Do not let it boil. Stir, incorporating the entire mixture so there is no film at the bottom...
4. When the eggs have thickened to consistency of very heavy cream, begin to add the cooled melted butter with one hand, stirring vigorously with the other...
5. Pour extremely slowly so that each addition is blended into the egg mixture before more is added...
6. When all the butter has been added, add the lemon juice or vinegar a drop at a time and immediately remove from heat. Add salt and a mere dash of cayenne...

Note:
If you proceed with care your Hollandaise should not curdle. If it does, however, don't despair. Finish adding the butter as best you can. Remove sauce to a small bowl, clean the pot and put a fresh egg yolk in it. Start over again, using the curdled sauce as if it were the butter...

"Plastic Wrap for the Win"

"Plastic Wrap for the Win"


"Poached Eggs Easy"

Ingredients:
Eggs
Plastic wrap
Nonstick Spray

"Poached Perfection"

"Poached Perfection"

Directions:
1. Bring a large pot of water to just under a simmer. It should be steaming, but not boiling or simmering at all...
2. Working with one egg at a time, line a bowl with a piece of plastic wrap about 8 inches long...
3. Spray the plastic wrap very lightly with nonstick spray...
4. Crack an egg into the center of the bowl. Pull the edges of the plastic wrap up to form a little packet with the egg in the center...
5. Twist the plastic so it seals at the top and make sure to keep it secure. Do as many eggs as you want this way!
6. When you're ready to cook the eggs, just dangle them in the water and make sure they aren't touching the bottom of the pan. Move them around slowly so the water circulates around the eggs. Cook them for about 3-4 minutes depending on the size of your egg. At any point you can lift the eggs out of the water and feel them, they should be firm and white around the outside but give a bit in the center...
7. When they are done, move all the eggs to an ice bath to stop the cooking...
8. When you're ready to serve the eggs, just dunk them back in the hot water or about 15 seconds to reheat them. Then cut off the top of the plastic and the plastic will fall away and you'll be left with a perfect soft cooked egg...


"Kobe-Wagyu Sirloin Burger"

Ingredients:
1 to 1 1/2 pounds of Wagyu Beef Sirloin (I ground it myself, but you could find pre-ground)
1 teaspoon Sea Salt

"Benedict with a Twist"

 

Directions:
1. Mix together and form into patties and then cook in a fry pan or on a grill at medium to medium high heat until cooked to liking, aprox. 3 to 5 minutes....

 

 

 

 

"Delish Brunch"

"Kobe-Wagyu Sirloin Burger Eggs Benedict" with "Avocado" and "Peppered Asiago"

Ingredients:
Pre-made Crumpets (from above recipes)
Pre-made Burgers (from above recipes)
Pre-made Hollandaise (from above recipes)
Poached Eggs (from above recipes)
1 ripe Avocado, seeded and sliced
1 chunk peppered Asiago cheese, shaved/grated
Fresh chopped Chives for garnish
Fresh chopped Italian Parsley for garnish
Sea Salt and Cracked Pepper to taste
Butter for Crumpets

"Like my Burger on the rare side but you can cook to liking"

Directions:
1. Make above recipes in amounts needed for the amount of people you plan to serve, saving extras in the fridge if not needed...
2. Toast and butter a crumpet, place a cooked kobe-wagyu burger on top and follow that with one poached egg...
3. Place 3 slices of avocado on top followed by several spoonfuls of Hollandaise sauce, then a teaspoon or two of grated cheese...
4. Garnish with chives, parsley, salt and pepper to taste...

Serve and Enjoy........

"Sunday Brunch Benedict"