Lazy Brunches.

A selection of brunches.

 

Who doesnt like a weekend brunch?  The great thing about them is that there is no rush and almost no time frame as to when you need to have them by.  Whether it's at 9 in the morning or 2 in the afternoon.  It's all good in my book for when you have them.  The time of day, weather outside and even time of the year may dictate your choice of brunch as well.

Whether it's pancakes and maple syrup; crepes, sugar and lemon; full English; Fried eggs and sriracha; scrambled egg, bacon on seeded toast; yoghurt, berries and seeds; smoked salmon, egg, avocado on toast.  The options are limitless and this is the beauty of brunch as a meal, there really are no rules. 

As a family we love our brunches at the weekend, especially on Sunday as it is one of the only meals in the week that all 3 of us a s a family sit and eat together.  We have such a busy lifestyle of work, school and sports coaching that that the first meal we eat together is Saturday dinner and then Sunday brunch and dinner.  So incredibly out of the 21 dining opportunities there are in the week, as a family we only manage 3!  That's quite something, I wonder how many other families are in a similar situation, or is it just us that are freaks of familydom.  I suppose there is another meal we all eat together, on Friday nights after Ski training we get home around 2120 and all have a pizza together, it's not exactly salubrious, but it certainly feels like a little treat for us.

That's why when we do eat together properly, we make the most of it.  Here are a few recipe ideas that are easy to have and make together as a family and are ones that I have recently done within my cookery lessons that I have been doing with a local family.

Granola

Getting ready to do the cookery lesson and prepare the Granola.

Ingredients - Makes a 600g Mix                                  

150g Oats

50g Sliced Almonds                                                 

50g Hazelnuts                                                             

25g Desiccated Coconut                                                      

25g Dark Soft Brown Sugar                                                     

125g Maple Syrup/honey                                                         

50g Vegetable Oil                                                    

½ tspn Salt                                                        

125g Raisins                                                                                                                

Method

Preheat oven to 110 degrees C                                                                

In a large bowl, combine the oats, nuts, coconut and brown sugar.                                            

In a separate bowl, combine maple syrup/honey, oil and salt.                                                   

Combine both mixtures. And pour on to a lightly oiled baking tray (spread out evenly).

Cook for 1h 15mins, stirring every 15 mins to achieve an even colour.                                        

Remove from the oven, add the raisins and leave to cool.                                                         

Once cooled transfer to an airtight container.                                                                           

Hazelnuts and Almonds tend to be a bit expensive and can be substituted for different nuts and seeds to save money and give some variety.  Other dried fruits can be used as well.  You can also use golden syrup, agave, a mixture of syrup and honey.

An increase in cooking temperatue and reduction in time will alter the finished product.  The lower the temp, the lighter the granola, the higher the temp the darker and crunchier the granola.  It is worth playing around with to get it just how you like it.

Scotch Pancakes.

Ingredients - Make approx 12 pancakes

1 Egg

1floz sunflower oil

7floz milk

3oz Caster sugar

8oz Plain flour

1tsp Baking powder                                                                                                                

Method

Mix the egg, oil, milk and the sugar together until emulsified.  This is easiest if you measure the milk first, then oil, crack the egg into it and place on scales, zero and add the sugar. 

Add to the flour and baking powder, whisk until a smooth batter is formed.

Leave to stand for about 30 mins. 

Spoon to required size onto a flat griddle at moderate heat, or non-stick frying pan.  Leave until air bubbles start to for on top and then flip over.  Remove after about another 30 seconds.        

Notes

Serve with berries, fruit, syrup, maple syrup, honey, Nutella.  The choice is yours, even serve them with bacon and your other traditional breakfast items.

Flippin' tasty!

It's all about the Eggs!

Poached, fried, scrambled, boiled, French Toast!

Eggs are one of the most versatile foods that we use.  They can be used in so many different ways.  Cooked in all the traditional ways and served with other breakfast, brunch items.  Or used in recipes, savoury or sweet.  We use them in cakes, cookies, biscuits, desserts, ice cream and even cocktails.

They are a great nutritional food, they are among the most nutritious foods on the planet.

After all a whole egg contains all the nutrients required to turn a single cell into a baby chicken.

A single large boiled egg contains 

  • Vitamin A: 6% of the RDA
  • Folate: 5% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B5: 7% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B12: 9% of the RDA
  • Vitamin B2: 15% of the RDA
  • Phosphorus: 9% of the RDA
  • Selenium: 22% of the RDA
  • Eggs also contain decent amounts of vitamin D, vitamin E, vitamin K, vitamin B6, calcium and zinc

This comes with 77 calories, 6 grams of protein and 5 grams of healthy fats.

Eggs also contain various trace nutrients that are important for health.

In fact, eggs are pretty much the perfect food. They contain a little bit of almost every nutrient you need.  They are the original super food.

 

Ingredients

Eggs

Vinegar

Sunflower/Vegetable Oil

Butter

Milk

Salt and Pepper                                                                                                        

Method

Poached

Fill a saucepan 5cm from the top and add some vinegar.  This keeps the white together.  If you put salt into the water the egg white will split into the water.  Bring to the boil and turn down to a gentle roll.  Stir the water to create a small whirlpool, crack the egg into the center of the pan and cook for around 5 minutes to cook the white and keep the yolk soft.

Fried

Put the vegetable oil into a nonstick pan, place onto a medium heat.  Crack the eggs in when it is still cool to allow for an even cook on the whites.  If you want a crispy egg, heat the oil up first and then crack into the pan.

Boiled

Bring a pan of water to the boil.  For the prefect hard boiled eggs, place an egg into the boiling water and cook for 9 minutes.  This will just set the yolk.  When the 9 minutes is up re-fresh the eggs in cold running water if using cold in a salad or for sandwiches.  A nice runny yolk will be 6 minutes, perfect for soldiers.

Scrambled   

For 2 eggs you will need around 50ml of milk.  You can alter the amount of milk you use depending on how you want your eggs to turn out.  You can also use cream or no milk at all.  Whisk the eggs and the milk with some seasoning.  Melt a knob of butter into a nonstick pan and add the eggs, cook on a gentle heat, stirring regularly.

French Toast

Interestingly the same mixture for scrambled egg can be used for this.  It can be used with salt and pepper if you wish to have a savoury version of it or if you wish to have the sweet version, just add a touch of salt and either vanilla or cinnamon to the mixture.

Dip the bread into the mix.

Allow to soak in a little and carefully turn over and repeat for the other side.

In a frying pan add a little oil and heat to moderate heat, carefully place the dipped bread into the pan.

Fry for a minute or 2 add a knob of butter and turn over.

When cooked, remove from pan, dust with icing sugar or cinnamon sugar and serve with fruit of choice, bananas are a great choice and caramelized banana is even better.

Notes

Serve with toasted bread, muffins, bagels.  All can be used as a brunch dish on their own or with other food items like smoked salmon/haddock, smashed avocado, beans, hash browns etc

What a load of Crepe!

They aren't just reserved for Shrove Tuesday!  Again, so easy to make and versatile.  I always make my crepes savoury, with just a little salt to season them, no matter whether I am having them with sweet things or as a savoury dish. 

And a little secret tip as well.  I pretty well use exactly the same recipe for Yorkshire puddings.

Ingredients - Makes Various amounts

Eggs

Plain flour

Milk (your choice of full fat, semi skimmed or skimmed)

Pinch of salt                                                                                                                                                              

Method

Use equal amounts of flour, milk and egg.  Whether that is a thimble, cup or bucket.  It's all about equal volume of ingredients for this one.

Mix the milk, salt and flour to a paste.

Add the egg and whisk into the flour and milk mixture.

Adjust with a little milk to make batter thinner.    

In a shallow non stick fryong pan, moderate heat, brush or wipe with a little vegetable oil, you don't want oil swimming in the pan for these.  Laddle indesired amount to cover the bottom of the pan in a thin coating.                                                                   

Notes

Serve with berries, fruit, syrup, maple syrup, honey, Nutella, lemon and sugar.  Or can be used for savoury fillings.

Now, about those Yorkshire Puddings!  The recipe I use is exactly the same as the crepe one, but without the extra milk for the thinning of the batter.  This is a fail safe recipe and can even be poured into cold oil.  Many of the top chefs in the country swear by it and it was taught to me by my first Exec chef almost 25 years ago.  His granny used it, so it must have been good!

It's all gone to crepe!

The wonderful Yorkshire Pudding! It's not a roast without it!