Breakfast for Dinner

Oh how I love going to cooking classes. This week I went to a week night class called "Breakfast for Dinner". My husband, who is not apt to join me in the kitchen ever, came along with me! This is partly because he loves me and wants to do things that I enjoy, and partly because he's a breakfast fanatic.

Once again, I forgot my camera...but hubby came to the rescue with his cell phone and we snapped a couple of pictures as we devoured the delicious food.

Here was the menu:

Cardamom-Pear Muffins
Crab and Roasted Red Pepper Strata
Huevos Rancheros
Rosemary-Mustard Sausage
The Ultimate Sticky Buns
Pecan Praline Bacon

I'm not actually a huge breakfast person. I eat it because I have to...and let's face it, the really good breakfast food isn't really that good for you anyway. I usually choke down some yogurt or an English muffin with honey on it. These recipes may not have been for calorie counting...but boy were they they tastiest darn things in the world! I'll share a few recipes now and save a few for future posts.

Cardamom Pear Muffins*
~I had never tasted anything like these~

  • 1 2/3 cup all purpose flour (I bet you could use 1/2 whole wheat, 1/2 all purpose)
  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp baking powder
  • 3/4 tsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp ground cardamom**
  • 1 1/2 cups chopped, unpeeled pear***
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tbsp sugar (for topping)
  • 1/4 tsp cardamom (for topping)
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray muffin tin or line with paper cups (if using a loaf pan, grease the bottom of it).
  2. Mix first 5 ingredients together in a bowl. In a separate bowl, mix pears, vegetable oil, milk, and eggs.
  3. Combine dry and wet ingredients and mix only to combine. Pour batter evenly into muffin tin (I use an ice cream scooper to ensure even distribution) and sprinkle topping over each muffin.
  4. Bake for approx. 25 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean.
  5. Cool in tin for 10 minutes, remove and place on a wire rack to cool completely.
*This can be made as a loaf of bread, too. Instead of using muffin tins, use a loaf pan. Increase the cooking time to about 55-65 minutes, or until a toothpick comes out clean.

**This is a really unique spice. It's available in the grocery store, but can be a bit pricey. To make it last, store it in the freezer. If you prefer to use something cheaper, cinnamon will work. However, the cardamom has a really special taste and I highly recommend using it.

***We used Bosc pears. When you are baking with fruit, it does not need to be ripe. If you would prefer, you could use apples instead of pears. But I think the pears go perfectly with the cardamom.

Huevos Rancheros
~I am in love with this recipe~

Ranchero Sauce*
  • 1 tbsp vegetable oil
  • 1 medium onion, chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 3/4 cup poblano pepper, roasted and chopped**
  • 2 cups canned crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tbsp white vinegar
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp cumin, ground
  • 1/2 tsp salt or more to taste
  • 1/3 cup cilantro, chopped
  • 1 tbsp fresh lime juice
  • Vegetable oil for pan-frying
  • 8 corn tortillas
  • 8 large eggs
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Pepper Jack cheese and/or sour cream to garnish
  1. For the sauce, warm the oil in a skillet over medium heat. Saute the onion and garlic for 2 to 3 minutes.
  2. Mix in the poblano pepper, tomatoes, vinegar, sugar, cumin, and salt and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover, and cook for about 15 minutes, until thickened.
  3. Stir in the cilantro and lime juice into the sauce shortly before removing from the heat.
  4. Heat about 1/4 inch of oil in a medium to large skillet. Dip the tortillas into the oil, one at a time, and cook for a few seconds, until soft and pliable. Drain the tortillas on a paper towel.
  5. Fry the eggs (we actually did them scrambled and likes them very much that way). Season with salt and pepper.
  6. Top each tortilla with a fried egg (or a couple spoonfuls of scrambled). Sprinkle cheese and sour cream, if desired, and then top with ranchero sauce.
*The Ranchero sauce is wonderful to have on hand. Make a double batch and store the extra in the freezer. It can be used to top chicken or salmon, too. If you use it with eggs on Monday, save some and use it over chicken later in the week for a quick meal!

**To roast the peppers, pop them under the broiler, turning occasionally until they are blackened on all sides. Then, while they are still hot, put them in a bowl and cover the bowl to allow them to steam a little bit (this will help the skin come off easier). Place them on a flat surface and use the back of a knife to scrap the blacked skin off of the peppers. You don't have to get it all off, just most of it. The peppers are then ready to chop. For a shortcut, they are available canned.

Rosemary and Mustard Breakfast Sausage

  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 1 tsp chopped fresh rosemary (or 1/2 tsp dried)
  • 1 14 oz. package bulk breakfast sausage, mild or spicy
  • 2 tsp whole grain mustard (using whole grain works best)
  1. Heat oil in small skillet over medium-high heat. Add onion and chopped rosemary and saute until golden (about 10 minutes)
  2. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add sausage, mustard, and generous amount of pepper. Mix gently.
  3. Form into 12 two inch diameter patties (you can make more smaller ones, or less bigger ones too).
  4. Arrange sausages on a heavy baking sheet (can be made 1 day ahead up to this point, store in fridge until ready to bake)
  5. Set rack at lowest position in oven and preheat to 500 degrees. Bake sausages until cooked through, about 6 minutes. If sausages have not browned, you can broil them for 2 minutes.
  6. Transfer sausages to paper towels to drain, then arrange on platter.
Pecan Praline Bacon
~ This was my favorite recipe of the night~
  • 1 lb thick cut bacon (about 12 slices)
  • 3 tbsp sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp chili powder
  • 1/4 cup pecans, chopped fine
  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
  2. On rack of a large broiling pan (or baking sheet lined with a Silpat) arrange bacon slices in a single layer.
  3. Cook in the middle of the oven for 10 minutes or until they just begin to turn golden.
  4. In a small bowl stir together sugar and chili powder. Remove pan from oven and sprinkle bacon with sugar mixture and pecans.
  5. Return pan to oven and cook until bacon is crisp and browned, about 5 minutes.
  6. Transfer bacon, praline-side up, to paper towels to drain.

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