During the hustle and bustle of school days and weekend sports, we rarely get to sit down to a big satisfying breakfast. So during school breaks, and particularly over Christmas vacation, our family looks forward to some hearty morning meals that will carry us right through until early afternoon.
With various family members visiting (we'll have 17 for Christmas breakfast at my dad's this year), I would rather not be standing over the stove flipping pancakes or French toast for hours. Instead, preparing a couple of casseroles the night before, then cooking them in the morning saves time while allowing me to enjoy that first cup of coffee with my family.
Our family breakfast favorite is French toast. So when I saw Paula Deen's Baked French Toast Casserole, I was pretty sure this would please the kids while freeing me up to sleep in a little longer. This recipe also has a video of the southern chef making this incredibly rich meal. (If you're worried about your caloric intake, don't even read the recipe.)
This dish turned out more like a French toast bread pudding, with the sweet topping and pecans providing a contrasting crunch to the tender underside. All the kids loved it, asking for seconds and almost finishing the whole tray at one meal.
If you cannot imagine a morning without pancakes, try Bobby Flay's Mini German Pancakes with Apple Caramel Sauce. These cakes are cooked in muffin tins and have a deliciously light texture with enough flavor to be eaten just with a sprinkling of powdered sugar. But the warm apples with caramel transform this simple pancake into an instant favorite.
When it comes to eggs, there are so many tempting dishes. Whether you prefer the frittata, strata, casserole or quiche, here are a few ideas:
- Edwards' Breakfast Casserole (this company sells delicious sausage and country ham)
- French Baguette Egg Casserole with Spinach, Mushroom, Onion and Gruyere
- Quiche au Fromage
- Brunch Strata
- Asparagus and Ham Frittata