Tag Archives: brunch

My favorite brunch dish…recreated at home

So I guess if I were to pick a place that my friends and I meet up at the most I would have to say it is Another Broken Egg. It’s a wonderful place to have brunch and they have some really unique dishes. They serve fabulous Bloody Mary’s and have Bailey’s to spike your coffee if that is your desire. As a stay at home mom, sometimes I meet my other stay at home moms (and my friends who work from home) for brunch. It’s perfect. We drop the kiddos off and then before we run our errands or go home and do our thing. It’s the perfect meal as far as I am concerned. Best of both worlds and anything goes. So crab cakes cavallo is my favorite dish on their menu. It’s a total spurge and so decadent. I adore crab cakes. As a kid my mom and dad would take me to Harry’s Hamburger Stand in Marksville when we would visit my grandparents and I always loved their crab burger. So I guess it would stand to reason that I would love crab cakes. I buy this just at random in the seafood section at Kroger’s. They have great ones. The ones I use in this recipe are just what I had bought last time. Mini crab cakes from Target. Market pantry brand. You are welcome to make your own but I will be honest…mama ain’t making homemade crab cakes at 8 a.m. on a Saturday. Thank you very much I will just use the frozen ones. But do your thing honey. This dish was really quite simple to pull together using prepackaged ingredients once I figured out my plan of action. Of course the experience was not the same as being at ABE, as we call it, but the recipe was pretty dead on. It tasted divine. I made some grits and toasted English muffins to serve along side of this scrumptious dish. A cup of coffee and we were golden. Big Daddy loved the eggs with the sauce but did not care for the crab cakes. Whatever…he is nuts!! Who is he? This makes me question who is. Lol! I am mostly kidding. He said it was too early for crab cakes. I did not know there was such a thing. Again, obviously I married a stranger. Smh. Oh another side note…this dish is usually served with poached eggs on top. But I don’t do poached eggs and I have always ordered it with scrambled eggs and it is wonderful!!! Anyway, give this recipe a try if you love brunch and you adore crab cakes!!~AMB

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some of us convened for an impromptu ornament exchange in December. We may or may not have had mimosas or Bloody Mary’s that morning. Kidding. We totally did.

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oh the deliciousness

Copycat ABE crab cakes Cavallo

serves 2″”

Stuff you need~
1 package of crab cakes (2 big ones or 8 mini ones), cooked according to package directions
1 package Hollandaise sauce mix, cooked according to package directions
1/2 cup andouille sausage, sliced and chopped
One green onion stalk, green parts only, sliced thin
6 eggs, scrambled
Cooking oil

What to do with the stuff~

Warm some cooking oil (about 1 tablespoon) in a medium size skillet. Cook andouille (say it with me an-do-we) sausage until it is nice and brown. Stir in Hollandaise sauce let this simmer on low for about 2 minutes, stirring frequently. Add sliced green onions. My best friend Lolly, taught me to use my kitchen shears to cut them straight into whatever dish you are putting them in. Where I’m from, that is nearly every dish. Her mother in law, Mrs. Fern, taught her this little trick. It works like a charm!!! Let the sauce get infused with that andouille and green onion flavor. Ooh so good. Now, plate this dish up so you can chow down.
Layer one big crab cake on a plate. Spoon some of the scrambled eggs over the top. Now, ladle some of that heavenly sauce over the top. You can add more sliced green onions to this if you wish.
Enjoy! Now that’s a brunch dish worthy of a Cajun!!! Or anyone who just wants to brunch like a Cajun. Say it with me…yummmmmmmmm!!!

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mmmmmmmmmm!!

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getting that divine sauce ready for the job it was destined for. To top crab cakes!

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Pioneer Woman’s Eggberts Sunriser

Ok, first of all, it may seem like I have a slight fixation with the Pioneer Woman aka Ree Drummond.  I admit, that may be a little true.  I think she is beautiful, witty, smart, and I love her recipes.  She has 4 kids just like me and she was a city girl who married a country boy and learned to adapt and bloomed where she was planted.  I got to say, that is a lot like my story.  So I guess I identify with her and I love to cook and her recipes seem to be the ones I gravitate to.  So, I showcase many of her recipes on my blog and all of this is amounts to a hill of beans except you get the benefit of my take on her recipes and I share them with you.  Do ya’ll remember this pic…Image

Yeah…I guess I have a little fan obsessed when it comes to PW.  That’s ok…we all have our thang, right?  So, naturally I follow her on Facebook and the other day a picture popped up on my newsfeed that made me drool.  A recipe that I knew I could not walk on this Earth much longer without making.  It practically cried and begged me to make it.  Bless its little heart…I had to answer its cries.

So,  a little back story here.  Big Daddy loves him some breakfast.  I grew up in a household that did not make breakfast except for rare occasions and on vacation.  He grew up in a family of pancakes or french toast every morning.  Breakfast was a must and for him it still is.  I have certainly developed a deeper appreciation for the most important meal of the day and now that we have our kiddos, they of course eat breakfast every morning.  It stands to reason that seeing a recipe for a wonderful concoction called an Eggberts Sunriser would drive me to drop it all and make one ASAP.  Well, it just so happened that the perfect occasion presented itself almost immediately.  Our 13th anniversary.  What?  You say, a breakfast recipe for your anniversary.  Well…yes.  Let me tell you, Saturday my youngest starts complaining of a sore throat.  When I tell you my easy going baby boy does not complain often, I mean that.  So I knew something was up.  Then Sunday, when some friends were over to celebrate our oldest daughter’s birthday, started running fever and it was downhill from there.  The writing was on the wall…our anniversary was the next day and going out to dinner was probably not going to happen that day.  BUT I could make him a delicious anniversary breakfast.  Eggberts Sunriser seemed appropriate.  So I made it.  Ya’ll…it was so perfect.  I looked so tasty when I put his together that I followed right in there and fixed myself one.  OH.  MY.  WORD.  All I can say is, if you are a breakfast lover or like me a brunch fanatic, you have to get in there and try this.  You can read all about PW’s take on this recipe here…http://thepioneerwoman.com/cooking/2009/12/the-eggberts-sunriser.  For now, here is my take on this fabulousness. Oh and after a trip to our pediatrician’s office, it has been confirmed that my baby has strep throat and a double ear infection.  Yeah, fancy dinner out for 13th anniversary was not in the cards.  That’s ok…plenty of time for that.

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Happy 13 years of wedded bliss/craziness to us!!  I love this man so.  He makes me happy.  And nuts.  But mostly happy.  

Eggberts Sunriser 

Serves:4

Stuff you need~

8 cups frozen hash browns

20 whole frozen mini potato wedges (I used some leftover baked potatoes that I had from Sunday lunch.  I cut those up into wedges and then did the same thing)

Canola oil for frying

Salt and pepper, to taste

1 whole medium onion, diced

1 whole green bell pepper, diced

1 whole red bell pepper, diced

1 jalapeno, seeded and diced (optional)

1 1/2 cups diced ham

1 1/2 cups sharp cheddar cheese, grated

4 Tablespoons butter

8 whole eggs

Salsa for topping, optional

What to do with the stuff~

Now, I will start by telling you that I halved this recipe because I knew it would be only Big Daddy and I eating this, but next time I will probably make extra because you could easily reuse this stuff together for breakfast burritos.  We love breakfast burritos in this house and also like to use up what we cook, so for us this is a win win.  Also, I think next time I will omit the hashbrowns and mini wedges and just use all cut up baked potatoes.  What my mother in law (the great and wonderful Deb) calls country fried potatoes.  Mmmmm.

Ok…Now, to start off…grab a big cast iron skillet and really douse it well with canola oil.  Cover the bottom and then add some more.  Trust me.  I tried to use my oil sparingly and it resulted in the frozen hash browns sticking to the bottom of the pan.  You don’t want to deep fry them, but you want them crispy and browned well.  Not stuck to the bottom.  Got it?  Good.  Heat the oil over medium heat and then cover the bottom of the pan with the hash browns.  Now, season them really well as they cook and don’t turn them much.  Ideally, you want to let them brown and then flip them maybe once.  Let them be, precious little darlings.  Let them become crispy and brown.  Again…don’t let them burn.  If you need more oil, add some to the pan.  I did and it was all good.

Now, if you are going the frozen wedge route, you will add considerably more canola oil to your skillet so you can kind of deep fry the wedges.  I just added the baked potato wedges to the pan at the end of frying the hash browns and let them brown some.  Or you can bake the frozen wedges.  It is really up to you.  I HATE to deep fry.  It is just so messy and makes the house smell.  To each his or her own though so do your thing!  In another skillet, add some canola oil and warm it over medium heat.  Not a lot of oil, but enough to just grease the skillet.  Now, stir in the diced veggies and ham.  You want to stir it around just let the raw veggies get a little tender and take the rawness away.  Unless you like all that stuff raw, then, well skip this step I guess.  I probably cooked mine for about 8 or 10 minutes, stirring several times.

Now, in a bowl, layer a some of the hash browns, then wedges, then the veggie and ham combo.  Now, sprinkle some cheese over this.  While the cheese is doing its melting thing, get out a small skillet and add your butter to it.  Turn on the heat on medium low and let the butter melt.  Crack your eggs into the skillet and cook them to taste.  Big Daddy likes his sunny side up but I am an over medium gal.  The pic I took is of mine so it is not as pretty as his was.  Or PW’s picture on her’s.  But mine still had the yellow juice and it dripped down over the potatoes and…oh just writing about this is making my mouth absolutely water.  Sweet Maria, that was an excellent breakfast.  Definitely put a fresh start on our 13th anniversary and if this next year of our marriage is as good as Eggberts Sunriser…well we are in for one wonderful year.  I am pretty dang sure we have started a new anniversary tradition…or a once a week tradition.  Yeah, this dish is that good.

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Happy, happy, happy!

 

Cheddar Cheese Grits Casserole and (im)perfect moments

Grits.  You either love them or you hate them.  There is typically no in between ground there.  No gray area where someone is a little iffy and be swayed one way or another.  I am definitely a grits lover.  I like them with a good bit of salt, pepper and a ridiculous amount of butter.  This year I discovered something surprising…grits are so delicious with garlic and cheese in them.  I mean really, really delicious. Creamy, cheesy with just a hint of garlic to them.  Topped with more cheese…they are a wonderful accompaniment to any brunch.  I told ya’ll this week I was doing “blog about brunch”…I will say again…I am a fool for some brunch.  This grits casserole can find a home on any brunch table.  I have so many brunch recipes that I am not sure I could share them all with you over the course of a week or two…but I will round up some of my faves.  The other day I gave ya’ll the breakfast danish casserole.  Score one for Cajun Mama cause that baby is a winner.   Anyway, this is another excellent addition to your brunch recipe repertoire (say THAT 3 times fast!).

Like anyone, I tend to reflect as one year comes to a close and we usher in another.  I guess the time for reflection and taking stock comes for all of us at this time.  I hate to put too much emphasis on these days because for some it is such a hard time to get around and most of us are ready to move on to another year.  I don’t know what kind of year it has been for many of you.  For me, it has been good and fast paced but also has brought many things to light.  Some good and happy.  Others not so much.  But I do know this..and I hope you do too…I am where I am for a reason.  It is part of my path.  Just like finding these cheesy garlic grits are part of my destiny (I am not kidding…they are that good!), so is whatever you are doing or where you are at this moment.  I will not get all deep because I know ya’ll probably don’t get on here to listen to my insights about life..also because we have some family coming in for New Years Eve.  I have cooking to do.  Shocking…I know.   I will only say this…my in laws came in the other day to celebrate our Christmas.  They wanted to take pictures in front of the tree.  I took some of them and the kids.  They wanted me to get in there.  I had no makeup on.  My hair was not really fixed.  I didn’t know how my outfit would look.  I don’t consider myself a vain woman, but I am a woman.  Taking an ugly picture is not really ever my goal.  But I decided to be grateful for the moment to take pictures with my precious family.  To BE in the moment, instead of wishing to be somewhere else or look another way.  I ended up loving the picture because it captures our joy as a family.  The fun we always (ok…well usually) have together.  Being in the moment is not easy for me.  I tend to want to jump ahead or look behind.  But the good stuff, however not perfect it may seem, for me, is usually right where I am.  Even if I cannot see it or appreciate it at that moment.  So today, I hope you can look around and see the beauty in where you are.  In this moment, or the day, or of your life.  Every moment has something to offer and teach.  Even the imperfections (and mine are so many) can be beautiful.  Anyway, enough of that.  The focus here is cheesy, garlic, yummy, creamy grits.  Make them.  You will be oh so happy you did.  Much love and many blessings to all of you.

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We may not have it all together…but together we have it all (that should be our family motto)

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Garlicky cheesy goodness…so perfectly Southern and perfect 

Southern Living Cheddar Cheese Grits Casserole (Southern Living magazine December 2010)

Stuff you need:

4 cups milk (I use 3 cups whole and 1 cup half and half for extra creaminess but the other way is great too)

1/4 cup butter \1 cup uncooked quick-cooking grits

1 large egg, lightly beaten

2 cups shredded sharp Cheddar cheese (that Kraft kind with Philidelphia cream cheese added is amazing in this)

1 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon pepper

1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese

2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped

What to do with the stuff:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Lightly grease a 11 x 7 inch baking dish.  Bring milk just to a boil in a large saucepan over medium high heat.  Whisk in butter and grits a little bit at a time.  Reduce heat and simmer, whisking mixture constantly for 5 to 7 minutes, or until grits are cooked.  Remove from heat. Stir in lightly beaten egg followed cheddar cheese, salt and pepper.  Add in finely chopped garlic if desired at this time.  Pour into prepared dish.  Sprinkle with grated Parm.  Bake at 350 for 35 to 40 minutes or until mixture is set.  Serve immediately.  Yummmmm!!!!  The epitome of southern dishes, right on your kitchen table or brunch buffet table.  Be sure to take a nice long whiff of the garlicky aroma before digging in.  I also sprinkle some Tony’s on it before serving.  Adds just a hint of spice and a nice kick of color.

Carol Lynn’s Breakfast Casserole (the best EVA)

So I have already told ya’ll about my precious babysitters and their mama.  They are friends whom we have chosen as family.  Or they chose us.  Either way.  It was destined to be and I am awful glad.  When I was pregnant with baby #4 aka LMB, hot mess, the wild one, those sweet then 14 year old girls decided they wanted to throw me a baby shower to welcome baby Lucas.  It was very unexpected as he was my 4th child in a less than 5 year period and let’s face it…the bloom was off the rose.  Of course, it was very small and only close friends and family were invited.  It was more of a show of support and excitement  than a way to get gifts.  I just don’t want to start one of those debates about whether it is en vogue or appropriate to have a baby shower for subsequent children.  I am not weighing in either way…I will only say that every baby should feel as loved and welcomed as every single one of mine has.  It was not a huge shower it was more of a sprinkle and I felt so very loved and blessed.  Still do every time I look back on these memories.   All I know is that at the time, as I have told ya’ll before, I was not all that comfortable with being the lady with 4 kids back to back.  I was overjoyed to be having my little caboose and after a few miscarriages before and in between, I knew I had been blessed beyond belief, but still…I felt somewhat like a two headed circus freak.  I am completely comfortable now and wear it like a badge of honor, but then, with 3 kids 4 and under and another on the way, on that day, I felt like a queen.  I felt treasured and honored and loved.  So, I guess regardless of whether or not a shower for my 4th baby was en vogue or not…feeling the way I felt that day, was worth any faux paus.  You gotta know when hold them and know when to fold them.  I look back and smile, knowing that those girls and their mama were willing to buck tradition to celebrate me, my baby and ultimately the blessing of my (not so little) family.  Love you girls.

None the less, those girls and their mama planned the sprinkle to a hilt and the food was to die for.  It was my favorite meal…brunch…with cake…yum!!!  My friend and their mama, whom from here on I will refer to as Fairy Godmother, is an amazing cook and has inspired me to try new recipes and branch out, made some of her treasured recipes.  One of them was the best breakfast casserole…Carol Lynn’s Breakfast Casserole.  She got it from a friend (Carol Lynn) and it is oh so easy and oh so good.  I will be making this tomorrow morning for New Years Day breakfast.  It is something you put together the night before and then let it chill in the fridge until morning.  Then you get up and preheat the oven and pop it in.  A little later, out comes a warm and bubbly breakfast casserole.  Sounds fab, right?  Oh it is my friends.  It is.  My fairy godmother is fond of saying “that’s the stuff” or “it’s good stuff” when she really likes something…this stuff is “the stuff”.  So you still have time to get the ingredients if you are so inclined and you might even have most in the fridge already.  I hope you enjoy it when you do make it.

Happy New Year to all my Cajun Mama friends out there.  So glad that you are with me as we go into 2014.  It will be a great year full of new recipes, tried and true recipes, and fun stories.  I hope as we usher in 2014 you feel blessed, treasured and loved.  Knowing you are out there is a blessing to me and you make me look forward to the new year. ~AMB

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Brunch with cake…my favorite…

Blessings abound…the precious cake at my LMB’s baby sprinkle 

Carol Lynn’s Breakfast Casserole

Stuff you need:

3 cups Pepperidge Farm herbed stuffing

1 1/2 lb. bulk breakfast sausage (I use Jimmy Dean mild), drained and crumbled

3 cups milk

2 cups shredded cheese (I use a blend of cheddar and colby jack usually)

6 eggs

1 can cream of mushroom soup

What to do with the stuff:

Prepare your 9 X 13 casserole dish by spraying it with cooking spray.  Layer stuffing, shredded cheese and sausage (in that order).  Beat eggs with 2 1/2 cups of the milk until frothy and pour over the casserole.  Cover and refrigerate overnight.  The next morning, whisk together the cream of mushroom soup with remaining 1/2 cup of milk.  Pour this over the casserole and bake 40 to 50 minutes or until firm.

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Looks good, doesn’t it?  

Breakfast Danish Casserole

I love brunch. I am not sure if I have ever shared that little tidbit with ya’ll…but I do.  It is just such a convenient meal.  It is so versatile.  It can be as big and fancy of an ordeal as you want, but it can be laid back and relaxed if you choose.  You can have such a variety of foods when you plan a brunch too.  It is a culmination of all things good.  It’s an ANYTHING goes meal for the most part.  Who doesn’t love that?  The part I enjoy the most about it is that I can have a cup of coffee or two before I have to get cracking.  That makes for a much happier household and Cajun Mama likes happy.  Now, when you factor in that brunch makes it perfectly acceptable to drink at 10 in the morning, that just pushes brunch to the top of my list.  Mimosas, Bloody Marys, and coffee with Bailey’s in it.  I mean….what is not to love?  Over the next few days, I will be sharing my favorite brunch recipes.  I have some yummy, super easy ones and some that are a little bit more involved but totally worth it.  We can call it Blog About Brunch Week!!  Extra, extra bloggin about brunch, ya’ll!!!  Hope you will come back for some more scrumptious brunch recipes.

I am sure it would not tax anyone’s imagination to find out that I have an entire Pinterest board (or two..) dedicated to brunch foods.  So, when I ran across this Breakfast Danish casserole, it was an absolute shoe in for me to try ASAP.  I made it once a few months ago and it was a hit across the board.  Perfect with coffee and a definite kid friendly dish.  It is like dessert..at breakfast!  This is so easy to prepare, I can do it after only one cup of coffee.  That is pretty easy…let me tell you!  I had been pondering what to make for our Christmas morning breakfast.  I wanted to do  a brunch so that it would give us a chance to let the kids open their gifts and give us something more substantial than cinnamon rolls from the can.  Don’t get me wrong, we LOVE cinnamon rolls from the can…just wanted to do something more special for Christmas morning.  Big Daddy asked me to make biscuits and sausage gravy, so I knew we would have that and I LOVE grits and I have an excellent recipe for a cheesy garlic grits casserole (hint hint at my next post)…but I wanted something sweet to round it out.  Yes, I could have chosen fruit and we usually put that in there, but it is Christmas morning and I felt like breaking a few rules.  Being naughty after being nice for so long.  LOL!!  Plus, I didn’t have any fruit and there was no way in the world I was fighting the lines at Brookshires or Kroger to buy fruit.  So, breakfast danish casserole it is!!!  This was an EXCELLENT brunch menu.  With some fruit to add some color and nutrition to it, it would have been perfect!  It was pretty much a cinch to make and everyone was happy and full.

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Scrumptious I tell ya’ll…mmmm

Breakfast Danish Casserole (adapted from Key Ingredient http://www.keyingredient.com/recipes)

Stuff you need:

2 8-ounce packages cream cheese, softened

2 cans refrigerated crescent rolls (like Pillsbury)

1 cup sugar

1 teaspoon vanilla extract (My mother in law turned me on to Butter Nut Vanilla Extract…excellent in this recipe)

1 egg

1 egg white

1 cup of powdered sugar

milk

dash of vanilla

What to Do with the Stuff:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  Prepare a 9 x 13 dish by spraying it with a light coating of cooking spray.  Lay out one tube of crescent roll dough (don’t separate) in one long piece on the bottom of prepared dish.  Pinch together any separated pieces or use your pastry roller.  In your standing mixer, cream together cream cheese, sugar, egg, and vanilla until smooth.  Spread the mixture  evenly over the layer of crescent roll dough.  Lay second tube of crescent roll dough over the cream cheese mixture.  Brush the top with the egg white to ensure a nice golden brown top crust.  Pop this into the oven at bake for 35-40 minutes until the top is golden brown.

While the casserole is baking, make up your glaze.  It couldn’t be easier.  Dump powdered sugar into a small mixing bowl.  Add a little milk at a time, whisking after each pour of milk.  Add milk gradually until you have a mixture that is a little more runny than a paste.  You want it to pour but not be super runny.  Not as thick as peanut butter, but not as thin as syrup.  Does that make sense?  Probably more like molasses.  Whisk in a splash of vanilla.  When danish casserole is out of the oven, let it cool for about 15 minutes.  Pour the glaze over the semi cooled casserole.  Cut into squares and serve.  This will stand alone with a cup of coffee or a glass of ice cold milk.  You will love it.  I promise.

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As my Daddy says, “plum larapin”