Kitchen Concoctions

Saturday, December 20, 2014

Eggnog Pancakes

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Goldrich Eggs. All thoughts and opinions are my own. #GoldrichYolk 


A festive twist on a breakfast favorite, these fluffy Eggnog Pancakes are topped with a creamy, sweet Eggnog Syrup and a dusting of nutmeg!

There is so much magic and wonderment that fills the air this time of year! Just like when I was a small child, I can sit a stare at our Christmas tree for hours. And no matter what type of day I am having a simple Christmas song or the smell of warm winter spices drifting from the kitchen makes me so happy.


And while all that hustle and bustle of shopping and gathering with friends leading up to the big day can be fun, I absolutely love Christmas Day. It's like just for one day all the world is still. Stores are closed. People are off work and school. And all is quite.

I love that it is a day where we don't have to rush anywhere. That on that day deadlines don't matter. That we can stay in our pajamas all day and just relax. And just be. And just soak in time with loved ones. I have loved every bit of this moment of peace since I was a small child.

Of course joy of Christmas wouldn't be complete without gathering in the kitchen and then later around the dinning room table. Growing up I never really looked forward to the big Christmas dinner. Not that we didn't have one, in fact we always had either a ham or smoked turkey and all the fixin's Christmas night. But I always loved Christmas morning breakfast more.


Every Christmas morning, right around 8 am, right after we finished opening our gifts from Santa, my Mom would head into the kitchen to cook a huge breakfast spread, while we all played with our new toys. From bacon and sausage, to scrambled eggs, fresh fruit and orange juice, grits and a variety of sweet breads, including cinnamon rolls, banana bread and pancakes.

Seriously, the best morning of the entire year! :) To this day, I still love having a big, special Christmas morning breakfast with my family.

One day a few weeks ago, when Eric and I were planning what we HAD to make (a.k.a eat) before the holidays were over, Eric mention we should make homemade eggnog. I've made homemade eggnog several times before with much success, but Eric unfortunately has missed out on all the tasty homemade goodness. Well this year, when attempting to make it just for him, it turned into an eggy mess. In an effort to redeem myself, and not ruin Eric's favorite holiday drink, these Eggnog Pancakes were born.


These pancakes are fluffy, like pancakes should be, but with that rich festive eggnog flavor. They are made with quality ingredients, like our favorite store bought eggnog, unbleached all-purpose flour, freshly grated nutmeg and Goldrich golden yolk eggs (currently available at select stores). These Eggnog Pancakes were such a hit (and totally made up for the eggnog fiasco) that they will be making an appearance in our kitchen this Christmas morn!

PS: Check out my breakfast video tip (below the recipe) and my savory holiday breakfast recipe Chicken Cordon Bleu Quiche!


Eggnog Pancakes
By Heather H. of Kitchen Concoctions: www.kitchen-concoctions.com
Printable Version
Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 15 minutes Makes: 12-14 pancakes

Fluffy Eggnog Pancakes topped with a creamy, sweet Eggnog Syrup and a dusting of nutmeg! 

Ingredients:
Pancakes:
2 ½ cups unbleached all-purpose flour
3 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
½ teaspoon baking soda
¼ teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground nutmeg
2 Goldrich eggs
2 cups eggnog (store bought or homemade)
½ teaspoon vanilla extract
½ teaspoon rum extract, optional
3 tablespoons butter, melted

Eggnog Syrup:
1/3 cup eggnog (store bought or homemade)
2/3 cup powdered sugar
Nutmeg, for topping

Directions:
For Pancakes: In a large bowl, stir together flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt and nutmeg. Set aside.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs. Add eggnog, vanilla extract, rum extract and melted butter. Whisk to combine. Slowly whisk dry ingredients into into wet ingredients, whisking until batter is smooth and free from lumps. 

Meanwhile, preheat a large non-stick skillet or griddle over medium-high heat. Spray with cooking spray and add ¼ cup pancake batter for each pancake, being careful not to overcrowd the pan. Flip pancakes when bubbles form on top and around the edges of pancake. Cook pancakes for an additional minute on the other side or until set.

Serve pancakes warm, topped with Eggnog Syrup.

For Eggnog Syrup: In a small bowl, whisk together eggnog and powdered sugar until smooth. Add additional sugar or eggnog, if needed, to reach desired consistency.

Cooking Tip: Preheat oven to 175-200 degrees F. Place pancakes in a single layer on baking sheet and place in preheated oven to keep warm while cooking remaining batter.

Freezing Tip: Place cooled pancakes in a single layer on baking sheet. Place baking sheet in freezer and freeze for 4-6 hours. Once frozen solid, place frozen pancakes in freezer baggie. To thaw, place frozen pancake on baking sheet and bake in a preheated 350 degree oven for 10-12 minutes, or until warm. Alternatively, frozen pancakes can be defrosted in the microwave for 1-2 minutes. 



Disclosure: This sponsored blog post was written by me on behalf of Goldrich Eggs. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Because of sponsors like Goldrich Eggs I am able to continue to bring you all the content I feature here.

Friday, December 19, 2014

Holiday Gift Guide: Foodie Gifts Under $10

On a tight budget? Looking for last minute stocking stuffer ideas? Today I am partnering with Groupon Coupons to bring you 10 budget friendly holiday gifts for all those foodies in your life! 

Confession: I just started my holiday shopping 2.5 days ago. Yeah. I know. I am one of those people. 

Not like I intentionally waited until the last minute to do my holiday shopping, it just happened. I have been out of town a lot lately and honestly didn't really think anything about it until just a few days ago and then it has been full on panic mode.

Another thing that has kept me from shopping is that I don't know what to get for several people on my list and I only have a small budget this year. But being on a tight budget hasn't stopped me from shopping before. In fact, I kind of like the challenge of sticking to a budget, and using my crazy coupon and savvy shopping skills to find a good deal!

That's why I was excited to find out that Groupon now offers coupons in addition to their traditional deals. I shop Groupon regularly to get deals on restaurants and attractions in my area, but the new Groupon Coupons allows me to search for coupons from popular retailers (like Target and Whole Foods) to online stores (like Amazon), to find online promo codes, as well as, traditional coupons I can print off. Since I am sure others are like me, on a budget and doing last minute shopping (at least I hope!), I decided to put together a holiday gift guide for foodies with all items being $10 or less (with the help of coupons, of course!).



2014 Holiday Gift Guide: Foodie Gifts Under $10:

1. Kitchen Apron- An apron is essential for anyone working in the kitchen or manning the grill. No matter how careful I am I always get stuff on my clothes and so an apron is absolutely necessary for me! Although I have several aprons, they are pretty basic and boring. I have longed for a cute and pretty apron to wear in the kitchen. A fun apron, inline with the gift recipient’s taste, is sure to be a hit.

2. Chocolate- If you give me chocolate, chocolate anything, as a gift I will love you forever and I don't think there are too many other people in this world that would disagree! The wonderful thing about gifting chocolate is that you could spend $10 and get 2-3 “gourmet” chocolate bars or get a smaller chocolate treat, like a single chocolate covered strawberry, and pair it with something else like flowers or wine.

3. Cookbooks- Cookbooks, and books in general, is one of my favorite things to give a gift. While they can be a tad bit expensive, you can still get great books at affordable prices. Consider giving an ebook (if you know the gift recipient has has an electronic reading device) or shop for vintage books at thrift stores or retail shops. You can also find great deals and discounts for books by shopping online sales and promotions.

4. Hand Soap and Lotion- Since I am always in the kitchen I am always washing my hands. This means a good hand soap is crucial! I also keep lotion near by, for when I am done in the kitchen, because all that washing drys out my skin. You can NEVER go wrong with fun, frilly, smell good hand soaps and lotions.

5. Food Themed Christmas Ornaments/Decorations- One of my absolute favorite holiday traditions is picking out ornaments for each other that represent “us”. Since we are both foodies, we have a lot of food/cooking related ornaments on our tree. I love it and it makes our tree so personable! Putting together a collection of meaningful ornaments, is not only fun and unique, but is a small gift that will be treasured for a lifetime!

6. Magazine Subscriptions- I love, love, love gifting magazine subscriptions! It is such an easy and usually very affordable gift! When gifting a magazine subscription, I usually purchase the current (or older) issue and then take a piece of paper or the subscription card found inside the magazine and write “A year on me!” and tape it to the cover of the magazine. I then wrap it all up and order the magazine subscription to be shipped to the recipient. Every person I have ever gifted a magazine subscription to loves this gift (it is the gift that keeps on giving!)! You can usually always find magazine subscription deals, promos or coupons this time of year for a variety of magazines covering all sorts of subject matter. Just check that the recipient doesn't already have a subscription to the magazine you plan on ordering!

7. Wood Pepper Mill- A wooden pepper mill is so classic and I think every kitchen should have one! Freshly ground black pepper makes a world of difference compared to the fine powdered stuff, and will help you need less salt. Plus I love the way a wooden pepper mill looks on the counter in a kitchen! So professional!

8. Gourmet Dog/Cat Treats (Homemade or Store Bought): Since I love my pup and kitty, I am super impressed when a friend or family member remembers my little fur babies and sends something just for them! Dog treats are really easy to make (I have several recipes here on Kitchen Concoctions), but if you are short on time, you can usually purchase “gourmet” treats for pretty reasonable prices! 

9. Garlic Press- In addition to a pepper mill, a garlic press is essential to a well stocked kitchen. I use my garlic press daily, because who has time to chop garlic, and I love it. And while there are some pricy garlic press gadgets on the market, the one I have used for years, was a cheap $5 model and it works perfectly!

10. Flavored Extracts- I use vanilla extract all the time in my kitchen, but vanilla (and extracts in general) can get expensive! Gifting the baker in your life a bottle of good quality vanilla extract is a simple, yet much appreciated, gift. And if you have a bigger budget, consider giving a “collection” of smaller bottles in different flavors (vanilla, almond, rum, maple, etc.).

There you have it! Ten foodie gifts you can really get for $10 or less!!! If you have done all your shopping, what are your favorite $10 or less foodie gifts? And for the rest of you, we are now T-minus 5 days until the big day!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Groupon Coupons. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Because of sponsors like Groupon Coupons I am able to continue to bring you all the content I feature here.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Green Curry Mashed Chickpea Salad Sandwiches

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Don't let busy days cause you to miss lunch! Today I've partnered with Sara Lee® Delightful Bread to bring you a healthy, yet hearty, vegetarian sandwich filled with mashed chickpeas, crunchy cashews, plump raisins and a spicy green curry sauce. 


Some people think that because I run a food blog, teach cooking classes and develop recipes for brands that I am eating all.the.time. And while some days I feel like this is the case, other days my first real meal of the day may not be until dinner.

You see, most days, I am up and going by 6:30 am and don't stop until 11:00 pm that night. This could mean working from home testing, photographing and writing about recipes; or working from the road as I run errands or run all over town teaching cooking classes. Some days when I get home and plop on the couch I realize coffee and a cookie, from a recipe I tested earlier that morning, is all I had to eat that day.

Not good. Not good at all.


Not only is this not healthy, but I get a tad bit grouchy when I don't eat. Even though my days are busy, I am trying to make a conscious effort to stop and eat and squeeze in at least 30 minutes of exercise a few times a week.

Since this time of year is also filled with a lot of sweet treats and indulging, I hope that with my efforts to eat healthy and stay active, “recovering” from the holidays won't be so bad as we roll into the new year (hello, new year's resolutions!).

In an effort to eat right, lunch has become my new favorite meal! I used to struggle the most with lunch, needing something fast and healthy, yet filling enough to keep me fueled until dinner time. Salads are a good healthy option, but can be a bit time consuming chopping all those vegetables, but sandwiches, well that's where it's at!


Since sandwiches just scream lunch, I was happy to discover Sara Lee® Delightful Breads. These breads are only 45 calories per full-size slice, are excellent source of fiber, contain no artificial colors or flavors, and no high fructose corn syrup. While these breads come in a variety of flavors, my favorite flavor is 100% Whole Wheat, which goes great with all sorts of sandwich toppings.

My current favorite sandwich inspired by Thai flavors, is this Green Curry Mashed Chickpea Salad Sandwich. This sandwich is so delicious and a delightful and healthier way to change up your ho-hum lunch routine!


Green Curry Mashed Chickpea Salad Sandwiches 
by Heather H. of Kitchen Concoctions: www.kitchen-concoctions.com
Printable Version
Prep Time: 10 minutes Serves: 2-4

A healthy, yet hearty, vegetarian sandwich filled with mashed chickpeas, crunchy cashews, plump raisins and a spicy green curry sauce. 

Ingredients:
1/3 cup plain Greek yogurt
1 ½ – 2 teaspoons green curry paste
1 (15-ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
2 tablespoons chopped green onions
1/3 cup chopped unsalted cashews
1/3 cup golden raisins
1/8 teaspoon each salt and black pepper
8 slices 100% Whole Wheat Sara Lee® Delightful Bread (toasted, if desired)
Romaine lettuce or spinach, for serving

Directions:
In a small bowl stir together Greek yogurt and green curry paste. Set aside.

Add drained and rinsed chickpeas to a medium sized bowl. Using a potato masher or fork, mash chickpeas until almost smooth or to desired consistency. Stir in green onions, cashews, raisins and yogurt/green curry mixture. Season to taste with salt and black pepper.

To serve, spread desired amount of chickpea mixture on one slice of bread. Top with lettuce and another slice of bread. Serve immediately. Store leftover chickpea salad mixture in refrigerator for 2-3 days.


Even though my health and fitness goals are simple, they are very important to me. Sara Lee® knows that we each have a healthy transformation story of our own and they want to hear about. Share your own health and fitness story as part of Sara Lee's® 45 Delightful People program and you will automatically receive a free tee-shirt and could win a ton of other great prizes.

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Sara Lee®. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Because of sponsors like Sara Lee® I am able to continue to bring you all the content I feature here.

Monday, December 15, 2014

Lemon Rosemary Rice

Rice is a quick and easy side dish that is often very plain and boring. Dress up this humble grain with bright and refreshing lemon juice, earthy rosemary and creamy feta cheese! 

Disclosure: This post is sponsored by Wildtree. 

Right now I am extremely tired. And if you asked me to put together a new inventive recipe or complete dinner I would just laugh at you. As much as I love meal planning, picking the perfect protein and matching sides, or dreaming up an all new recipe idea, sometimes I get stuck. And if I am being honest, sometimes, yes sometimes, really not in the mood to cook anything.

Yes, even food bloggers get in a cooking rut.

A cooking rut in the food blogging world is so taboo. I mean really how can someone who loves to eat and cook be stuck in a rut. Oh, and if all the food bloggers who get in a rut (and they all do), were to share their confessions, some might be shocked about what they ate while getting through their dinner time blues.


Yes, I will admit that there have been weeks when we have eaten out every meal (how this food blog kept running during those times, I haven’t a clue!) or where we ate frozen pizza for dinner (gasp!!) and I have even used a boxed cake mix a time or to. But that is real life people!


You might ask what I do to get out of a rut. Well hours and hours are spent pouring over food magazines, cookbooks, blogs and Pinterest, looking for just the right recipe to get my cooking mojo back. And sometimes, it is finding just the right ingredient to get me inspired in the kitchen. Like when I discovered Wildtree Gourmet Foods. This line of all natural, organic, preservative and nut-free foods has all sorts of seasoning blends, sauces and infused grapeseed oils to help you take shortcuts in the kitchen. If you are in a cooking rut, you don't want to spend any extra time in the kitchen and having products like these, that add pops of flavor with very little effort, are essential! 

This Lemon Rosemary Rice was made on one of those days when I didn't feel like cooking, yet eating out (again!) wasn't an option. Rice is a common side dish in our house, yet plain rice is so boring (which leads to a cooking rut!)!! Switching from traditional long grain rice to Jasmine and adding some fresh lemon and rosemary really took blah rice and made it the star of dinner!!

Oh and one more thing before I leave you. While the recipe has it optional and the photos are lacking, do not skip the feta cheese! Please!!! We have made this rice several times (since taking the photos) and the creamy, tangy feta is what really makes this dish pop and what made this side dish go from a one hit wonder to tried and true!


Lemon Rosemary Rice
Printable Version
Prep Time: 10 minutes Cook Time: 15 minutes Wait Time: 5 minutes Serves: 4-6

Perfectly cooked rice with fresh lemon, earthy rosemary and creamy feta. 

Ingredients:
3 cups chicken or vegetable stock
1 ½ cups Jasmine rice
1 ½ tablespoons Wildtree Roasted Garlic Grapeseed Oil
1 lemon, juiced and zested
1 tablespoon fresh minced rosemary or 1 teaspoon dried rosemary
1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper, or to taste
1 teaspoon sugar
1/3 cup crumbled feta cheese (optional, but highly recommended)

Directions:
In a large pot, combine chicken stock, rice, and Roasted Garlic Grapeseed Oil . Bring to a boil and boil for 1-2 minutes. Cover, reduce heat to low and simmer for 15 minutes. Turn off heat and keep covered for an additional 5 minutes.

Fluff rice with fork and stir in in rosemary, lemon juice and zest, salt, black pepper and sugar. Serve immediately.

Adapted from Wildtree 


For more information about Wildtree products or to find out how you can become an independent Wildtree representative visit Wildtee or like Emily's Wildtree on Facebook.

Disclosure: This sponsored blog post was written by me on behalf of Wildtree. Emily's Wildtree is a an advertiser and sponsor of this blog. All thoughts and opinions are my own. Because of sponsors like Emily's Wildtree I am able to continue to bring you all the content I feature here.

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

GIVEAWAY: $30 Wildtree Gourmet Foods Gift Pack

It seems like this time of year is all about food. Every where I turn there is food, delicious, tempting and often not so good for me food. That is why I am happy to partner with Wildtree today to bring you a tasty giveaway!


Wildtree is an organic, preservative-free nut-free line of gourmet foods. They carry everything you need for your panty for breakfast, lunch and dinner. They have everything from Taco Seasoning to delicious flavored (and good for you and perfect for cooking) grapeseed oil (stay tuned for an amazing recipe I created using this) and so much more!

In addition to their products, I like Wildtree because their products are only able by ordering through your independent Wildtree representative. I love brands that sell their products like this because it gives anyone and everyone the opportunity to be an entrepreneur and earn a living! That means you too!


Something else that I think is really neat about Wildtree is that they have freezer meal workshops where you make 10 family sized or 20 smaller portioned meals with your friends or family to stock your freezer. This is something I am really interested in since sometimes I travel for work and I know Eric often doesn't know what to do for dinner in those situations. LOL! Also for busy weeks I think it would be amazing to have a freezer stocked with meals to pull out in a pinch! They have a ton of different freezer meal plan options and right now if you have a workshop before February 19, get 30% in free host rewards- so with 8 participants, you'll get $170 in free products!!

Also, for the holidays, Emily's Wildtree is offering a special holiday promotion and if you buy 3 gift certificates you get 1 free (free one will match lest expensive gift certificate)!


But wait! There's more! :) Emily is gifting one lucky Kitchen Concoctions reader with $30 worth of Wildtree product of your choice, just use the Rafflecoppter below to enter!

 a Rafflecopter giveaway


Disclosure: This giveaway is sponsored by Emily's Wildtree. 

Monday, December 8, 2014

Kitchen Adventures: Medieval Times (Dallas, Texas)

Kitchen Adventures... when life takes me outside the kitchen! This time we kicked something off our bucket list when we broke bread with winches and got swooped away by nights in shiny armor at Medieval Times! 


Lately experiencing all that life has to offer... kicking things off my life's bucket list... you know living life to it's fullest... well has been super important to me. Maybe it is because I work all.the.time or as I, cough, cough get older and realize life is short; but instead of maybe one day or someday, I just do it. You know whatever it maybe. Stopping to enjoy the view. Not putting off getting together with friends. And just making things happen.


With that being my life's motto, on a recent trip to Dallas, I decided for one of our activities I wanted to visit Medieval Times. It has been on both of our bucket lists for as long as I can remember, so we decided to just go!

This is a super fun family friendly activity that everyone will love! It is essentially dinner theater to the extreme. And just like the movie Cable Guy, everyone, including our server plays their part really well! : )


When you first arrive all parties are given a colored paper crown (that you MUST wear!). I wanted to arrive early to get a good seat but the color of your crown is your “assigned” seat. Note: You can for ticket upgrades to get extra perks like preferred seating, souvenir photo, etc.

After you receive your crown and move past the multiple opportunities to take a staged photo (for an additional fee) you move into a large indoor “courtyard”. This is where you wait until they call your colored hat for the show. In this area you can purchase souvenirs or beverages.


The Entertainment: The show was a full production with horses, owls, knights in shiny armor, and of course a king and princess! It is an interactive show with the cast coming into the audience, passing out roses to select guests, etc.

Each color coded section had a knight to represent them and fight to win the princess. Our knight actually won and I say it is because of all my vigorous clapping and cheering.


The food: Dinner also represented the time period well. Everything was very simple and served rustic. And when I mean rustic, there is no silverware (wash your hands!) and your server just walks by and plops the food down on your plate while you watch the show! Note: Water, tea and Pepsi are included with your ticket, any other beverages (alcoholic and non) are an additional charge.

Everyone is served the same menu unless you specify vegetarian when you make your reservation. Our menu consisted of garlic toast, tomato soup, a potato wedge, half of a whole rotisserie chicken, a pork rib and an apple turnover for dessert (nothing extraordinary, but the portions are large and filling.... which fits the time period perfectly!).


We had so much fun at Medieval Times and recommend it if you have never been (especially if you like cheesy themed dinners/date nights... like me... in fact the cheesier the better! Smile!)! If you live near one it is a great “out of the box” date night and if you are vacationing it is something the whole family (probably kids ages 4 and up) will love.

Travel tip: The regular ticket price online and at the box office (listed below) is a bit expensive. However, keep in mind that is your dinner and entertainment. Also, before you go check their website. They run a lot of specials and promotions and we actually paid less than half price when we went! Oh and if it is your birthday you get to go for free (plus they will call your name out during the show!)


Additional Information:

Address: 2021 N. Stemmons Dallas, Texas 75207
Phone number: 1-866-543-9637
Hours: Varies (weekend show times throughout the whole day, weekday mostly evenings)
Price: Adult- $60.95 (+tax and processing fee) Child- $36.95 (+tax and processing fee) Note: Check for special promotions and discounts before going!

Additional locations:
Buena Park, CA
Toronto, ON
Lyndhurst, NJ
Chicago, IL
Atlanta, GA
Baltimore/Washington, D.C.
Myrtle Beach, SC
Orlando, FL

For more information visit:
Medieval Times
Medieval Times Facebook
Medieval Times Twitter

Friday, December 5, 2014

Oven Baked Cinnamon Toast French Toast



A childhood breakfast favorite... crispy, buttery, Cinnamon Toast; transformed into sophisticated French Toast! 


If you asked me as a child what my favorite meal of the day was, my immediate response, hands down, with no hesitation would be breakfast. Even though most mornings breakfast was just a bowl of cereal (I STILL puffy heart cereal!).

But then on those special occasions, a lazy Saturday morning watching cartoons (can you BELIEVE they don't have Saturday morning cartoons anymore!?!?!), or right after a peaceful Sunday sunrise, or of course on a coveted holiday or sleep over with friends; my Mom would surprise us kids with a homemade hot breakfast.


I use the word surprise loosely. Because if there was a Sunday morning or holiday without a family breakfast then there was something seriously wrong.

Even though I have never been a morning person, the smell of sizzling bacon and warm, gooey cinnamon rolls would have any kid, tween or teen running, ok let's be honest, stumbling into the kitchen!


My Mom's favorite breakfast treat to serve were cinnamon rolls. However, when she didn't have any on hand or we lacked the time, then cinnamon toast was the next best option. And truthfully, I think I kind of like cinnamon toast better. That humble piece of white bread, or if we were lucky cinnamon raisin bread, slathered with butter, topped with that special cinnamon sugar blend, all toasted to crispy, crunchy perfection. Yes my friends, I would take that over a cinnamon roll any day!

Now don't think that you can just go slapping some cinnamon sugar on some toasted bread and call it cinnamon toast. No siree! There is an art to making perfect, beautiful cinnamon toast and my Mom had it down pack. From the perfect cinnamon to sugar ratio, to the right bread, to using I Can't Believe It's Not Butter!®. Yes, my friends, due to the ability to easily spread (without ripping holes in the delicate bread) my Mom would smear I Can't Believe It's Not Butter!® on each and every piece of cinnamon toast I devoured during my childhood. Recently, when I wanted breakfast that reminded me of carefree Saturday mornings in front of the TV, I went to recreate this childhood favorite. When tracking down all the required ingredients, I was happy to learn that I Can't Believe It's Not Butter!® is now made from real, simple ingredients, like a blend of oils, water and salt. This means that not only is ICBINB still easy to spread, it has less saturated fat and calories than butter, but without skimping on that butter taste (you should try it for yourself and share what you think!) making it perfect for toast, baking and everything in between! 


After getting all the ingredients to make cinnamon toast just like Mom used to make, and devouring one piece, I decided to take things up a notch and transform my cinnamon toast into French toast. This version of French toast is such a delight! It has all those characteristics of cinnamon toast that I love, but can also be smothered in pure maple syrup. To keep things simple (read: dirty less dishes) I baked my French toast right on the pan I baked the cinnamon toast. Not only did this save dishes, it meant I didn't have to stand and flip French toast all morning and everyone could have a hot piece of toast together. Oh, and in case you were wondering, some versions of baked French toast is super soggy and I am totally not a fan. But that is NOT the case with my method below.... French toast perfection!


Oven Baked Cinnamon Toast French Toast
By Heather H. of Kitchen Concoctions: www.kitchen-concoctions.com
Printable Version 
Prep Time: 10 minutes Bake Time: 20 minutes Serves: 4

Crispy, buttery cinnamon toast; transformed into sophisticated French Toast!

Ingredients:
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/3 cup I Can't Believe It's Not Butter!®
8 slices cinnamon swirl or cinnamon raisin bread
3 eggs
2/3 cup half and half or milk
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions:
Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheet with foil and grease with 1-2 tablespoons I Can't Believe It's Not Butter! Set aside.

In a small bowl stir together cinnamon and sugar. Set aside.

Spread about 2 teaspoons I Can't Believe It's Not Butter! on one side of each slice of bread. Place buttered bread on baking sheet. Sprinkle cinnamon/sugar mixture evenly on top of buttered bread. Bake bread in preheated oven for 8-10 minutes or until toasted. Remove cinnamon toast from oven and cool slightly.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl whisk together eggs, half and half, vanilla and any renaming cinnamon/sugar mixture (about 1-2 tablespoons). Working in batches, add the cinnamon toast to the egg and cream mixture, turning to coat both sides. Using a fork, remove bread from egg mixture, letting any excess drip off. Return soaked toast back to the baking sheet. Repeat with remaining cinnamon toast.

Bake soaked bread for 8-10 minutes or until golden brown. Serve immediately topped with fresh fruit, whipped cream, powdered sugar or maple syrup, if desired.


I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.
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