Tag Archives: brunch

Maple Scones

Maple SconesMaple Scones are one of my favorite things. They’re so simple and good, and every time I have one, I get nostalgic for the days when I was learning beginner baking basics in a studio apartment I shared with an ex-boyfriend.Maple SconesA lot has changed in seven years, and also very little. I moved into a larger apartment. I got over the boyfriend (finally, and to my great relief). I have a much larger kitchen now. In fact, it’s so big that my work station is in the living room/dining area, and my (second) pantry and a dedicated dairy fridge are in my bedroom. I have a great roommate, who more-than-tolerates my kitchen time and is one of my dearest friends. I’ve taken all those baking basics and built them into more complex things, the way people do when they’re really excited about something.

On that note, I’m still really excited about home baking. I still bake everyday while listening to The Brian Lehrer Show on WNYC—I never miss it. And in the fall, I still get nostalgic for Maple Scones which, in turn, make me nostalgic for that terrible, tiny, dark kitchen where I learned how to properly measure flour by volume.Maple SconesMaple SconesThe first scones I ever made were the very good Maple Scones from Dinner with Julie. I made them over and over as-written, but ever so slowly, I’ve experimented with different scone methods and transformed what was once her recipe into mine. Half-and-half has become heavy cream, I’ve reduced the butter and upped the baking powder, I’ve added butter to the glaze. I kept the brown sugar and maple syrup, obviously. The results are mapley, fluffy and flaky with edges that are somehow both nubbly and tender.Maple SconesWhat I’m saying is that I make a hell of a maple scone. And now, seven years into baking and almost five into this blog, you can too. And maybe one day, when this post is seven years old, you’ll look back and realize that my recipe has ever so slowly become yours.Maple Scones

Maple Scones
makes 8 scones

3/4 cup heavy cream + more for brushing, very cold
2 tablespoons maple syrup (I use Grade A dark amber, robust taste)
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon baking powder
2 tablespoons light or dark brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, very cold, cut into cubes

Glaze:
2 tablespoons maple syrup + more to preference
1 tablespoon unsalted butter
1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
pinch of Kosher or sea salt

Make the scones. Place an oven rack in the center position. Preheat oven to 400F. Line a baking sheet with parchment. Set aside.

In a liquid measuring cup, use a fork to whisk together heavy cream and maple syrup. Refrigerate.

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, baking powder, brown sugar, and salt. Add cold butter. Use a pastry blender or clean fingertips to cut the butter into the flour until the largest pieces are the size of small peas. Stir in heavy cream mixture until a shaggy dough forms.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface. Pat it to 3/4-inch thick circle. Use a large, sharp chef’s knife to slice circle into 8 wedges. Place scones at least 2 inches apart on prepared pan. Brush with more heavy cream. Bake 15-16 minutes, until puffed and golden at the edges. Let scones cool on the pan on a rack for 10 minutes, or until they can be handled.

Make the glaze. Combine maple syrup and butter in a microwave safe bowl. Heat in 20 second increments, stirring between, until butter is melted. Whisk in confectioner’s sugar and salt. Glaze should be very thick, but drizzlable. Add more maple syrup by the teaspoon until your desired consistency is reached. Drizzle glaze over scones.

Scones may be served warm or at room temperature. They are best the day they are made, but will keep in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

Maple SconesMaple SconesMaple Scones

Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}

Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Did you know you can make a Puff Pancake {Dutch Baby} without any flour? And that by swapping in an equal volume of oats, reducing the milk, and getting the eggs extra foamy, you can get just as golden and rumply a result as in every other version you’ve ever had?Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Well, I didn’t. It hadn’t even occurred to me until I made Oatmeal Waffles a few weeks ago. But indeed, just as you can blend whole oats into cookies, graham crackers and linzers, you can swap them for the usual flour in and make one hell of a Dutch Baby.Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Not only is this oven pancake completely whole grain, it’s also naturally gluten-free! If you or a fellow breakfast guest needs to be gluten-free, make sure your oats are certified gluten-free.Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}If you’re wondering if this Oatmeal Puff Pancake is more work than the traditional version, the answer is “no.” Just like its gluten-full counterpart, the batter comes together in under 90 seconds in a blender, then goes directly into a super hot, buttery pan, then into the oven for 18 minutes.Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}The pancake is ready when the edges are golden brown and the center is beginning to take on color. It will also likely (but not always) have a few large bubbles, which will quickly disappear as the puff relaxes into a smoother bowl shape at room temperature.Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Once it’s deflated, fill your Oatmeal Puff Pancake with your favorite seasonal fruit (I went with the last of the plums and blackberries) and drizzle with maple syrup, or go more traditional with lemon and confectioner’s sugar. Then slice into this custard-centered beauty and behold its crisp-chewy edges.Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Like other Dutch Baby recipes, this Oatmeal Puff Pancake can be scaled up or down depending on the size of your pan and how many servings you need. I’ve included times and proportions for four different yields in the recipe notes to make sure that there’s plenty to go around.

Whether you’re a single person or a family of 5-6, this is one heck of a sweet brunch. If you can’t wait for the weekend though, I have it on good authority that it makes a great Wednesday night breakfast for dinner.Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}

Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}
makes one large puff pancake, about 4-6 servings

4 large eggs, room temperature
1 cup old-fashioned oats (use certified gluten-free for gluten-free)
4 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional, but recommended)
1/2 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
2/3 cups milk of choice (I used whole)
4 tablespoons unsalted butter

For serving:
seasonal fruit
maple syrup
lemon wedges/juice
confectioner’s sugar

For smaller pancakes (6, 8 and 10-inch pans), see notes below the recipe for quantities and baking times.

Place a large (12-inch) ovenproof cast iron or stainless steel pan in a cold oven. Preheat oven to 400F.

In the a high-powered blender (or food processor), blend eggs for 30 seconds until frothy. Add oats, sugar, cinnamon, salt, and milk. Blend another 30-45 seconds.

Once oven has reached 400F, remove the hot pan and add butter. Place pan back in the oven for 60-90 seconds, until butter has melted. Remove pan from the oven, and swirl the butter so it coats the pan. Pour in batter. Bake 17-18 minutes, until puffed and golden. Do NOT open the oven door during baking.

Let pancake cool 2-5 minutes before slicing. Serve immediately with toppings of choice.

Notes:

For a 6-inch pan (1 serving):
1 large egg, room temperature
1/4 cup old-fashioned oats
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
pinch of ground cinnamon (optional, but recommended)
pinch of Kosher or sea salt
3 tablespoons milk of choice
1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Bake for 16-17 minutes.

For an 8-inch pan (2 servings):
2 large eggs, room temperature
1/2 cup old-fashioned oats
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
pinch of ground cinnamon (optional, but recommended)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/3 cup milk of choice
2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Bake for 16-17 minutes.

For a 10-inch pan (3-4 servings):
3 large eggs, room temperature
3/4 cup old-fashioned oats
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional, but recommended)
3/8-1/2 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt (based on preference)
1/2 cup milk of choice
3 tablespoons unsalted butter

Bake for 17-18 minutes.

Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}Oatmeal Puff Pancake {Gluten-Free Dutch Baby}

Zucchini Coffee Cake Muffins

Zucchini Coffee Cake MuffinsDoes anybody else have a fridge full of zucchini right now? I can barely close the my crisper drawer! Between summer sautés, stewed summer squash, and the long list of ways to bake with it, zucchini is one of my favorite bits of seasonal summer produce.

It adds moisture, structure, and a tiny bit of nutrition to cakes, cookies, quick breads, and anywhere else you can think to throw in a handful or two. I’m not saying adding zucchini to your bakes will absolve them of sugar and butter, but that sentiment has certainly worked as my excuse when reaching for a second Zucchini Coffee Cake Muffin. I mean, they have two cups of squash in them—they’re practically salad. Or something.Zucchini Coffee Cake MuffinsZucchini Coffee Cake MuffinsZucchini Coffee Cake MuffinsZucchini Coffee Cake MuffinsZucchini Coffee Cake Muffins are what happens when you take all the good things about zucchini bread and coffee cake, combine them in a batter, scoop it into a muffin tin, top it off with a cinnamon crumb, bake until golden, and drizzle a glaze on top. Health food, these are not, but you don’t come to this corner of the internet for health food. You come here because you are looking for more ways to get crispy cinnamon crumb topping into your diet.Zucchini Coffee Cake MuffinsHere, zucchini serves as a replacement for the usual liquid ingredients in our batter, like milk and sour cream. While I usually suggest wringing the shredded squash in a towel to remove excess moisture, this is one of those rare zucchini recipes where you can bypass the wringing and throw it directly into the batter. You need all the moisture you it can offer—when you first add the squash to the batter, it’ll be super dry, but after sitting a few minutes, it’ll be thick, rich and ready for the oven!Zucchini Coffee Cake MuffinsThe rest of the recipe is standard muffin and coffee cake fare, all the way down to the crunchy crumb and glaze. That said, I won’t tell anybody if you eat one and call it a serving of vegetables.Zucchini Coffee Cake Muffins

Zucchini Coffee Cake Muffins
makes 12 muffins

Crumb:
2/3 cup all-purpose flour
1/3 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
pinch of Kosher or sea salt
1/4 cup unsalted butter, melted

Muffin Batter:
1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon Kosher or sea salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened to room temperature
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 cups zucchini grated on the large side of a box grater, not drained (about 1-1 1/2 medium zucchini)
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract

Glaze:
1/2 cup confectioner’s sugar
2-3 teaspoons milk of choice

Make the crumb. In a small mixing bowl, use a fork to whisk together flour, light brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt. Add melted butter and stir together until everything is moistened and clumps form. Set aside.

Preheat oven to 400F. Line a 12-cup standard muffin pan with cupcake liners. Set aside.

Make muffin batter. In a medium mixing bowl, whisk together flour, granulated sugar, light brown sugar, cinnamon, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.

In a large mixing bowl, use an electric mixer to beat butter until fluffy. Mix in egg and vanilla; mixture may be a bit lumpy. Mix in the dry ingredients—mixture will be dry and crumbly. Use a silicone spatula or wooden spoon to fold in grated zucchini. Let sit 10 minutes and stir again; batter should be thick and no longer dry.

Divide batter among muffin cups—they will be full. Top with crumb and lightly press with your fingers to adhere. Carefully tap the pan on the counter five times to release any large air bubbles. Bake for 5 minutes, then turn the oven temperature down to 350F and bake for an additional 14-15 minutes.

Remove muffins from the oven and let cool in the pan for at least five minutes before removing to a rack to cool completely.

Make glaze. In a small bowl, use a fork to whisk together confectioners sugar and milk until thick, but pourable. Drizzle over muffins. Let sit 5-10 minutes before serving. Glaze will set completely after several hours.

Leftovers will keep covered at room temperature for up to two days or in the refrigerator for up to four.

Zucchini Coffee Cake MuffinsZucchini Coffee Cake Muffins

Friday Favorites: Weekend Breakfast

I have always been a sucker for weekend breakfasts, and that goes double now that brunch in public is a high-risk activity. I wake up on Saturday mornings excited to ransack my pantry and fridge to see what I can slap together and enjoy in my pajamas in front of the TV. Whether I’m making eggs on toast with a big side salad, or something extra-carby like waffles or biscuits, this ritual is an act of self-care that sets the tone for my weekend. In COVID times, this is about as luxurious as things get around here.

Below are a dozen fourteen of my favorite weekend breakfast items from the archives. Please believe me when I tell you that this *is* the narrowed down version of the list. I just really like breakfast, y’all.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastPuff Pancake {Dutch Baby}

My mom made Puff Pancakes for my sister and me when we were growing up, and they are still my favorite weekend breakfast of all time. You wouldn’t know it by their golden bowl shape or custardy centers, but these oven pancakes are absurdly easy to make and require just five ingredients. The best part? You can easily customize them for one serving or up to four.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastButtermilk Pancakes

Oh man, I am so proud of these fluffy, buttery pancakes. I made many, many test batches as the beginning of quarantine to get them juuuust right. I am here to tell you that I succeeded.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastWhole Wheat Pancakes for One

Are you a single human like me? Or maybe someone who hates sharing? Well then, this recipe for exactly three pancakes is for you! I have a regular all-purpose flour version too, so take your pick.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastSour Cream Waffles

These are the best waffles I’ve ever had, period. They’re fluffy, crispy and oh-so easy (no whipped egg whites!). Make a double batch and keep some in your freezer. You won’t regret it.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastOatmeal Waffles {Vegan & Gluten-Free}

All that said, I posted these Oatmeal Waffles a few weeks ago and am crazy about them! From the blender batter to their crispy exteriors to the fact that they’re vegan and gluten-free, these are a win all around.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastOvernight Yeast-Raised Doughnuts

I won’t lie to you, yeast-raised doughnuts are a “project” breakfast, but they’re well worth the effort and forethought. Also, do you see that glossy chocolate dip? Because that should be all the convincing you need.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastPineapple Kolaches

Kolaches are a variety of Czech pastry that is very popular in my home state of Texas. I’ve got many varieties in my archives, but this jammy pineapple version is calling my name right now.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastCream Biscuit Pecan Sticky Buns

These are sticky buns made simpler. Where sweet rolls are traditionally made with yeast doughs, these buns rely on my trusty Cream Biscuit dough. Oh, and a lake of sticky pecan stuff.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastBrown Butter Nutella Swirl Muffins

I posted these muffins right before lockdown began, so they understandably got a little lost in the mix, but they are *really* good and you need to know about them. I mean, they’re made with brown butter and swirled with Nutella, so how could they be anything but wonderful?

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastBaguette French Toast

I know this recipe has baguette in the title, but please know that you can make it with any good crusty bread you like. This is just a really solid basic French toast recipe–we all need one in our culinary arsenal.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastButtermilk Biscuits & Chocolate Gravy

My grandmother used to make biscuits & chocolate gravy for us on Sunday mornings. Her recipes died with her, but mine is pretty dang close to the real deal. Sweet, savory and deeply southern, this is one of my favorite things.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastBacon, Cheddar & Scallion Scones

These savory scones are great any time of day, but I’d be remiss if I didn’t suggest you use them to make an egg and tomato sandwich for breakfast tomorrow.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastFriday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastHow to Make Eggs 5 Ways

And speaking of eggs, my first post of 2020 detailed how to make eggs five ways: scrambled, poached, fried, hard-boiled and soft-boiled. If you can master these, you can put an egg on toast or dang near anything else.

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastMason Jar Cold Brew Coffee

For me, no breakfast (weekend, weekday, whatever) is complete without a small bucket of coffee. This small batch cold brew is a summer staple for me, and far more manageable than most of the methods out there. Just shake it together at night and swap the mason jar lid for cheesecloth in the morning. Perfect cold brew every time.

Have you made any of these or any of my other weekend breakfasts? Let me know in the comments or on social media!

Friday Favorites: Weekend BreakfastFriday Favorites: Weekend Breakfast

Powdered Doughnuts

Hello there. Sorry for the unexplained absence. I had planned to post this recipe last week, but the protests in the wake of recent murders of Black people by the police made me pause. It seemed tone deaf to post recipes while people were out in the streets not just in my city or my borough, but literally in front of my building, demanding action against injustice. And so, I went silent on here and joined the movement because I had to. I couldn’t not. I attended rallies, donated money, continued examining my own white privilege, and used my social media accounts to amplify Black voices.Black Lives MatterI’ve made a point of keeping this blog apolitical over the years because I didn’t want to offend anyone. I wanted this site to be neutral on everything but quality baked goods. Even after our current president was elected, I kept my mouth shut. But I will not keep quiet about racism.* I won’t. I simply don’t care if it offends you.

*Also intersectional feminism, LGBTQIA rights/marriage, and pretty much any other human rights issue.

I want to make it clear that I heartily believe Black Lives Matter and am doing my best to listen to Black voices, and support BIPOC-owned businesses and anyone doing their part in the fight against injustice. There is no room for hate here–this is only the beginning and there is much to do.

If you are moved to leave a comment denying the existence of white privilege in any way, please don’t. It’s a waste of time and energy, and I’ll probably just delete it. Instead, please educate yourself on the systems in place that allow you to turn a blind eye without personal consequence.Powdered Doughnuts
Powdered DoughnutsSo…what do Powdered Doughnuts have to do with anti-racism? I’m not exactly sure, but they were supposed to be on the blog last week.

These are pure comfort food—the sort of thing my mom served for breakfast the morning after my sister and I had hosted a slumber party. Until I started testing fresh Powdered Doughnuts, I’d only ever had the packaged kind (I almost always go yeast-raised in doughnut shops), but now I’m a convert.Powdered DoughnutsPowdered DoughnutsPowdered DoughnutsPowdered DoughnutsI mean, can you blame me? These crispy-fried sour cream cake doughnuts are great by themselves, but double coated in powdered sugar (confectioner’s sugar), they’re…beyond. So. dang. good.Powdered DoughnutsThe doughnuts themselves are made with the same formula I’ve been using for a few years now. The dough comes together quickly and only needs a 15 minute rest (to let the gluten relax) before cutting and frying. Once they’re nice and golden, they get a dip in powdered sugar and—voila!—they’re ready to eat.Powdered DoughnutsFluffy on the inside and sugar-dusted on the outside, these are pretty irresistible. Sure, Powdered Doughnuts a bit messy, but almost all wonderful things are.Powdered DoughnutsTake a note from my mom and serve these on leisurely weekend mornings, or make a batch to share while you figure out your next step in finding equality for all. This is only the beginning and there is much to do.Powdered Doughnuts

Powdered Doughnuts
makes 15 2 1/2-inch doughnuts

2 2/3 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon baking powder
1/8 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
1/2 cup (4 oz) full-fat sour cream
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 large eggs, room temperature
2 teaspoons pure vanilla extract
vegetable or canola oil, for frying
3-4 cups confectioner’s sugar, for coating

In a large mixing bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, baking powder, nutmeg, and salt. Set aside.

Combine sour cream and butter in a small bowl. Microwave in 30 second increments, stirring in between, until butter is totally melted. Let mixture cool a few minutes, until warm to the touch but not uncomfortably hot (if it’s too hot, it could scramble the eggs).

In a small mixing bowl, use a whisk to beat eggs. Whisk in sour cream/butter mixture, followed by vanilla. Use a silicone spatula or wooden spoon to fold wet ingredients into dry. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit at room temperature for 15 minutes. Dough will be a bit soft.

Line a rimmed sheet pan with parchment.

Liberally flour a surface and rolling pin. Uncover dough and transfer it to the floured surface. Roll it out to 1/2-inch thickness. Use a doughnut cutter (or graduated cookie cutters) to cut doughnuts. Place cut doughnuts on prepared pan. Re-roll dough as needed.

Pour about 2 inches of oil into a large heavy-bottomed pot and heat to 350F. Line a rimmed sheet pan with two layers of paper towels and set a cooling rack over the top.

Once oil reaches frying temperature, slip 2-3 doughnuts into the pot. Fry 1-1.5 minutes per side, until golden and cooked through. Remove to rack. Continue frying in batches of 2-3, letting the oil return to temperature in between.

Once all doughnuts are fried and cool enough to be handled, place confectioner’s sugar in a pie plate or shallow bowl.

Working with a couple of doughnuts at a time, dip them into the confectioners sugar, then flip them with a fork. For more coverage, flip again. Return finished doughnuts to the rack. Let set for a few minutes before serving.

Doughnuts are best the day they are made.Powdered DoughnutsPowdered DoughnutsPowdered Doughnuts