Oh the joy of a homegrown summer peach! You know the kind—the ones that smell like a peach and taste like a peach. A “drip down your arm as you bite into it” peach—the kind that are so hard to find in the grocery store these days. Luckily I have my friend Chris Parker, owner of the Courtwood Inn, here in Murphys. She recently brought me a bag full of gorgeous peaches from the trees in her yard. "What can you make with these that I can serve to my Inn guests for breakfast?" she asked. I think this recipe is just the thing. Creamy without using cream, spicy with cinnamon and nutmeg and peaches that pop with the color of a 'sunny side up' egg. Serve with the sauce and whipped cream for a great dessert or with tangy yogurt for a tasty summer breakfast. Add a side of salty bacon or sausage for the perfect brunch.
Just Peachy Bread Pudding
6 T butter
8 cups day-old French bread with the crust on, cut or torn into bite sized pieces
3 cups whole milk
1 3/4 cups sugar, divided
6 large peaches, *peeled and sliced lengthwise into 1/4" slices
6 large eggs
1 T vanilla
1 T cinnamon
1/2 t freshly ground nutmeg
1/2 t kosher salt
3 - 4 T brandy
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Butter a 10" x 14" baking dish. Put the bread pieces in the baking dish and pour the milk over them, stirring to coat all the pieces. Let soak for about 30 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Meanwhile, melt the butter with 3/4 cup of sugar in a large frying pan over medium heat. Add the sliced peaches and cook 1-2 minutes until they release their juices. Strain into a bowl and reserve. Whisk the eggs, 1 cup of sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, salt and nutmeg. Pour over bread and stir to combine. Fold in peaches. Put the baking dish in a large roasting pan, put in the oven and fill with very hot water to come halfway up the side. Bake until the pudding is browned, puffy and firm when pressed, about 1 hour.
Simmer the reserved juices until steaming. Whisk in the brandy. Serve the pudding with the sauce and whipped cream.
*the peaches I used were easy to peel by just pulling the skin away from the flesh. I usually have to get some boiling water going, cut an 'X' in the bottom of the peach and then submerge in the boiling water for about a minute until the skin peels off easily, just like you would do a tomato.
I lived for a time in Munich when I was in my early twenties and I have a very fond memory of a walk in the Austrian Alps, stopping in a small farmhouse and eating a dish called Kaisersmarrn. Named for the Emperor Franz Joseph, "Kaiserschmarnn" translates to "King's mess". It may look like a mess but the taste is divine. I have thought of this tasty treat so often that I finally decided to see if I could possibly duplicate that food memory...I think i did it! This turned out better than expected when I decided to whip the egg whites separately rather than incorporating them right out of the shell. Wolfgang Puck did a version of this dish on an episode of The Barefoot Contessa but it was a much fancier version than I remembered so I kept looking for a good recipe until I found one that felt authentic. This recipe is about as close as I can remember, crunchy with caramelized sugar, sweet with raisins and fluffy like an egg-y pancake. I just can't wait for you to try it.
Kaiserschmarren - "Emperor's Mess"
1/2 t vanilla
1/4 cup half and half or milk
2 T sugar, divided
1 t Myers rum or Grand Marnier
3 T flour
3 T butter, divided
1/4 cups raisins, if you have time, let them soak in the rum for a bit to plump
powdered sugar for serving
applesauce or plum jam (or compote) for serving
Separate the eggs by placing the yolks in one bowl and the whites in the bowl of a stand mixer. Whisk the yolks with the vanilla, the half and half, about 1/2 T of the sugar, the rum, flour and salt, set aside. Beat the egg whites with 1/2 T sugar until soft peaks form (alternately, whisk by hand with a balloon whisk or use a hand mixer). Add the egg whites into the yolk mixture a little bit at a time, folding in lightly so you don't lose the volume of air, you want this to be fluffy like a soufflé with a bit of a pancake element. Melt 2T butter in a 12" non-stick skillet over medium heat. Add the egg mixture and cook over low heat, covered, until lightly browned on one side, about 2 minutes. Sprinkle with the raisins, add a bit of butter to the sides of the pan and sprinkle with a bit of sugar, then flip over by cutting the pancake down the middle and flipping each half over separately. Brown on this side, abut 2 minutes more and then while still in the pan, tear into pieces with two forks (making a 'mess') sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve hot with a side of applesauce or plum jam. Serves 1 for breakfast or 2 for dessert.
Those of you who know me well, know that I like to be somewhat of a trendsetter, not a follower...but, with that being said, I could not help but get on the 'carb free, cauliflower pizza crust' craze recently, when I decided to try and cut out carbs from my diet. I can't imagine life without pizza so I decided to make my own cauliflower crusted pizza, with a twist! Easy, tasty and pretty too, this crust goes together in minutes. Top with your favorite toppings - I used zucchini and mushrooms that I sautéed first in olive oil, threw on some sliced red onions and added a little bit of tomato sauce, mozzarella and Parmesan.
Just heat and eat.
Broccoli-Cauliflower Crusted Pizza
1 head cauliflower, stalk removed
1 small head of broccoli, stalk removed (optional, some people prefer the color and flavor of all cauliflower)
1 cup shredded mozzarella
1/4 cup grated Parmesan
1/4 tsp dried oregano or basil or a pinch of both
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/4 tsp garlic powder
2 eggs, lightly beaten
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Break the cauliflower and broccoli into florets and pulse in a food processor until fine. Place the broccoli-cauliflower mixture in a microwave safe bowl and microwave on high for 4 minutes. Let cool for a minute and then put in a kitchen towel or cheese cloth and wring all of the excess water out, you don't want a soggy crust! Combine the cauliflower and broccoli in a bowl with the mozzarella, Parmesan, oregano, salt, pepper, garlic powder and eggs. Mix well. Transfer to a small baking sheet lined with parchment paper and spread out to the edges or put in the center of a large baking sheet and spread into a circle, resembling a pizza crust. Bake for 20 minutes.
Add desired toppings and bake an additional 10 minutes.
It's finally time to post my fresh corn, green chile flan bake. Corn is now at its peak and the Anaheim chile bush in the garden was falling over this morning with so many peppers.
I decided to bake the flan in one big dish this time, leaving the peppers whole with the stem end intact. I think this gives it a more rustic look and is less fussy than individual ramekins. This flan makes a great accompaniment to anything from the grill or as an easy breakfast main dish with some sausages and tortillas on the side. Enjoy!
Fresh Corn, Green Chile & Goat Cheese Flan
2 cups cream
2 ears fresh corn, kernels stripped off and half of the kernels puréed
5 large, fresh Anaheim green chiles, blackened, skin removed & seeded, stem end on
1 5 oz chub of goat cheese
1 cup jack cheese, grated
pinch Mexican oregano
1/2 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp fresh ground pepper
spray oil for the casserole
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spray a six cup casserole dish with non-stick spray. Lay the peppers in the bottom of the dish. Beat eggs with salt pepper and oregano then mix in the cream. Add the whole kernel and puréed corn and grated jack cheese, stir. Pour over the peppers and then crumble the goat cheese over the top. Bake for 45 minutes until puffy and slightly browned. Serve warm. Serves 6 - 8 as a side.
I'm excited to be going to visit my mother this Sunday and spend some quality time with her. I'm not a big fan of eating out on Mother's Day, the restaurants are unusually stressed and the experience can be expensive and mediocre at best. I'm going to make a simple but delicious Quiche Lorraine and eat at her home instead. We might even go on a picnic...even if it's just to the back yard. This quiche, along with some fruit and a simple salad is the perfect brunch or lunch dish for this Sunday or anytime. Happy Mother's Day everyone!
As a caterer for over 30 years, I have established a reputation for consistently creating original menus inspired by the occasion and the season, presenting them with an ease and elegance uniquely my own. Fresh, locally-sourced ingredients are the basis of my creative “from scratch” menus, which range from the classically elegant to rustic and whimsical.
"Love your recipes! Pat made your avocado toast a few weeks ago, delish! I'm taking them to a party in a few weeks, although the mushroom crostata looks pretty darn good!"