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Light springtime fare is oh so good

 

March 15, 2018



Spring officially begins March 20th. Snowdrops and crocus are blooming, birds are flitting about searching out nesting material. I pulled a few dry weeds and laid them on the garden path to pick up latter. A minute later, a small wren was carrying off choice bits.

French Toast is a favorite for spring morning breakfasts, and as we move into the fresh fruit and berry seasons. I recently was in charge of French Toast for a youth breakfast and was asked for the recipe. I make French Toast like my mother made it, measurements are “what looks right”. I did a little guess/estimating and have some near amounts for you.

Choice of bread also makes a difference in the end product. A soft but firm bread is better than a soft floppy bread. My favorite, especially for kids, is Seattle International Classic French. The texture is perfect and the size suited to smaller tummies.

French Toast

10-12 slices French Bread

6 large eggs

A slow pour of milk to the count of 6 ( about 3/8 cup whole milk)

1/2 cap vanilla extract from a large bottle (about 1/2 tsp)

3 healthy shakes ground cinnamon ( about 1/4 tsp)

Shortening for greasing the griddle or pan

Lay bread slices out so they dry a bit while you prepare the egg mixture.

In a large flat bottom bowl (big enough so the bread lays flat in the bottom), beat eggs with a whisk until completely smooth, but not frothy. Add milk and mix well. Stir in vanilla and cinnamon until well incorporated.

Heat griddle or skillet to slightly medium high-medium high, about the same as you would for pancakes, and generously grease. Dip bread in egg mixture, flipping to coat both sides. Drain excess egg mixture and place on griddle, cook 3 to 4 minutes a side until golden brown. Hold in warming oven or serve immediately. Yield: 10-12 slices.

Note: you are correct, there is no sugar in this recipe. That is what syrup, honey, jam and jelly are for. Also note: if you want to use a softer bread, dry in open air for several hours before making the toast.

My niece, Magnolia, has a passion for unicorns, all things “Frozen”, rainbows, and, anything that glitters. http://www.lordbyronskitchen.com is a fun dad-cooking website. The author developed a recipe for Unicorn Poop Cookies to add some sparkle to his daughters sack lunches.

Unicorn Poop Cookies

1 1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 cup butter, softened

3 egg yolks

2 tsp mint extract

1 tsp baking soda

1/2 tsp baking powder

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp salt

1/2 cup candy sprinkles

1 cup candy coated mini chocolate chips

1/4 tsp Wilton purple or pink gel food coloring

1/2 cup coarse pink sugar

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Line baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.

In mixer bowl, cream together sugar and butter until light and fluffy. Add egg yolks, one at a time, beating well after each addition. Beat in extract, food coloring and salt.

Combine flour, baking soda and baking powder. Add to mixer bowl and mix on low speed to slowly incorporate the dry ingredients.

Stir in candy sprinkles and candy coated mini chips.

Pour pink sugar into a small bowl and set aside.

Scoop dough into small balls. Roll tops in pink sugar and place on prepared pans. Bake exactly 12 minutes. Remove the cookies from the oven and allow to cool for 3 minutes in the pan. Remove to wire racks to cool completely. Yield: about 4 dozen.

Note: do not chill this dough, bake immediately or it will dry out.

Of course her brother, Reed, had to have some cookies too. Therefore, we made Dinosaur Droppings. Substitute green gel food coloring, regular mini chocolate chips, mini dinosaur sprinkles and ginger bread men sprinkles and chocolate sprinkles for dipping.

These cookies would be fun to make with kids, because no chilling is required and they can use their imagination with the mix- ins and sprinkles and coloring. Share what you and your junior cookie bakers come up with by sending the ingredient list to the address listed below. Send pictures, you could end up in a future article.

Sometimes I give myself a good laugh. I recently tried a recipe for Blueberry Salad from The Church Supper Cookbook, edited by David Joachim. It was a hit at our house. Funny thing is, I only made half the recipe. In printing, “continued on the next page was omitted”. I wondered why there were no directions but it was easy to figure out what to do. Included here is the complete recipe, attributed to Marcia Fletcher, St Anne’s Episcopal Church, Calais, Maine.

Blueberry Salad

2 packages (3 ounces each) black raspberry gelatin

2 cups boiling water

1 can (20 ounces) crushed pineapple

1 can (16 ounces) blueberries, or 1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries plus 1/2 cup water.

Topping:

8 ounces soft cream cheese

8 ounces sour cream

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1 tsp vanilla extract

1/2 cup chopped walnuts

Combine gelatin and boiling water in a large mixing bowl and stir until gelatin is dissolved. Add pineapple, including juice and blueberries, including juice or water. Here is where I poured it all into a serving dish and stuck it in the refrigerator.

Instead, pour into a 9 x 13 inch glass pan and chill until set.

Cream together cream cheese, sour cream, sugar and vanilla. Spread over set gelatin. Sprinkle with chopped walnuts and refrigerate until serving. Yield 8-10 servings.

Note: either way, this is a good recipe to include blueberries in your menus. With the topping, this salad would be very pretty on a bed of chopped lettuce as side salads on the Easter dinner table. Sugar-free gelatin may be substituted for regular gelatin.

Share your favorite spring and Easter recipes by sending them to: Welcome to My Kitchen, c/o The Odessa Record, P.O. Box 458, Odessa, WA 99159, email therecord@odessaoffice.com or drop them in the Welcome to My Kitchen mail tin in The Odessa Record office. Those tulip and other spring bulbs you didn’t get in the ground last fall, can be heeled in now and you might get some late season blooms from them.

 

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