Coconut Crunch French Toast with Guava Syrup

Coconut Crunch French Toast with Guava Syrup

After our glorious day at King’s Hawaiian, the wonderful KH ‘Ohana sent us home with a huge box of goodies to fill our kitchen and tummies. ONO-licious!!!

I couldn’t wait to try out different recipes with the delicious products and I started off with an island inspired French Toast.

Coconut Crunch French Toast with Guava Syrup

While daydreaming about warm, tropical beaches I whipped up a batch of French Toast utilizing island based ingredients– coconut, guava, and of course– King’s Hawaiian Bread.

The slightly sweetened bread soaks up the perfect amount of custard base to yield a rich and creamy center. I also chose to coat the toast with Coconut Crunch pieces but if you can’t find it, non-toasted coconut flakes will also work well to create a wonderful texture.

Coconut Crunch French Toast with Guava Syrup

And after all this island goodness, I couldn’t bear the thought of settling for maple syrup. Lucky for me I had some guava puree on hand and was able to make a quick syrup. It was PERFECT!!!

Perhaps we all can’t be whisked away to some beautiful tropical paradise at any given moment but at least our tummies can be transported there with some Coconut Crunch French Toast and Guava Syrup.

Much Alohas to you all!

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Coconut Crunch French Toast with Guava Syrup
Serves 2

Ingredients:

Guava Syrup
1 Cup Guava Puree
1 Cup Water
1 Tablespoon Palm Sugar

French Toast
2 Large Eggs
1 Cup Milk
¼ Cup Heavy Cream
2 Tablespoons Light Brown Sugar
½ Tablespoon Vanilla Extract
½ Teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
2-3 Pinches Ground Nutmeg
4 Slices Kings Hawaiian Sweet Bread, about 1 inch thickness (Brioche can be substituted)
1 Cup Coconut Crunch Pieces (Coconut flakes can be substituted)
Confectioners’ Sugar for dusting
Vegetable Oil
Butter

Prepare the Guava Syrup by adding all the syrup ingredients into a small saucepan and bring to a light boil, stirring frequently. Once at a boil, lower heat to a simmer and cook down until the syrup is thickened and reduced by half. Remove from heat and warm prior to serving.

In a large bowl, whisk eggs, milk, heavy cream and sugar together. Add in the vanilla extract, cinnamon, nutmeg and whisk until the sugar has dissolved and all items have combined. Pour the Coconut Crunch pieces into a shallow dish.

In a large skillet, melt 2 tablespoon of butter and 1 tablespoon of oil over medium-low heat. Swirl the skillet to evenly coat the bottom. While the skillet is heating, dip the slices of bread into the egg mixture, coating each side. Lightly shake off the excess liquids and coat each side of bread with the Coconut Crunch pieces– gently pressing the coconut into the bread. Once coated, slide the bread into the heated skillet. This may need to be done in batches depending on your skillet size. Cook each side of the French Toast for 3-4 minutes until golden brown.

Plate the French Toast and dust lightly with confectioner’s sugar. Serve immediately with the warmed Guava Syrup.

Breakfast Pizza + Nambé Giveaway WINNER!

Breakfast Pizza

You could throw an egg on anything and it would be freaking delicious. Sandwiches, ramen noodles, pasta, rice……

Seriously.

Breakfast Pizza

So when I dived into Motorino’s Pizza al’ Uovo on my recent trip to NYC— I was in HEAVEN. Oooey-gooey fried eggs that just spilled into a crisp pizza covered with pancetta, basil and pecorino. SOOO good! I was hell bent on making my own version when I got home though I did make a few ingredients substitutions based upon my personal flavor preference. True– it’s nearly impossible to achieve the same type of crust that a wood fire oven can produce but overall I was very happy with it. You’ll be surprised to see how easy this is to make and it’s a guaranteed crowd-pleaser at your next brunch party.

But now for what you all have been waiting for….the winner of the fabulous Nambé Fish Platter

Drum Roll please………….

CONGRATS Jessica who said she would serve Gambas al Ajillo on the Nambé Fish Platter. Jessica, you will have until 5pm PST on Wednesday, July 25th to respond to our email and accept or another winner will be selected.

THANK YOU to everyone who participated! And THANK YOU Nambé !

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Breakfast Pizza
Serves 2

Dough:
1 Cup Lukewarm Water
1 Packet Instant Yeast
2 Cups Bread Flour, plus more for dusting the work surface and hands
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1½ Teaspoon Kosher Salt
½ Tablespoon Sugar
*Makes approximately 3 medium-sized pizzas

Toppings:
1 Tablespoon Corn Meal
Olive Oil
2 Large Eggs, crack into individual small bowls
2 Ounces Fresh Mozzarella, sliced and patted dry
4-5 Slices Bacon, par cooked and cut into large pieces
2 Tablespoons Grated Parmesan Cheese
Fresh Basil Leaves
Black Pepper

Prepare the pizza dough. Combine the water with the yeast and let set for 10 minutes until the yeast is dissolved and bubbly. Combine the rest of the ingredients in the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with a dough hook attachment. Add the yeast-water and mix until the ingredients have just combined. Cover and allow to rest in a warm area until it doubles in size—about one hour.

One hour before baking, preheat the oven to 500 degrees F with a pizza stone on the lower rack. If cooking the pizza on a baking sheet, preheat 30 minutes before baking.

When the dough has rested, take approximately 1/3 of the dough and flatten it with your hands on a floured surface. Use a floured rolling pin to gently roll the crust about 1/8 of an inch. Transfer the dough to a pizza peel (if baking directly on stone) or onto a baking sheet that has been sprinkled with corn meal. Gently brush the crust with olive oil.

Lower the oven temperature to 450 degrees F. If using a pizza peel, carefully slide the pizza in the oven on the stone. If using a baking sheet, place pizza in the oven. Par bake for about 6-8 minutes until slightly golden. Pull from the oven and carefully pour the eggs on top. Place the fresh mozzarella cheese and bacon around the pizza and sprinkle with the grated parmesan cheese. Return to oven and continue baking for an additional 6-8 minutes or until the eggs have just set and the bacon has crisped. When done, remove the pizza and top with fresh basil leaves and black pepper. Serve immediately.

I’ll Make You Red Velvet Banana Pancakes….

Red Velvet Banana Pancakes

 

Because it’s almost Valentine’s Day and because Jack Johnson is so darn dreamy, I’d like to give you all this yummy Valentine—

Red Velvet Banana Pancakes.

 

Red Velvet Banana Pancakes

I mean, c’mon now. Doesn’t this just scream L-O-V-E???? And the only thing that could possibly make this breakfast even better would be delish mimosas.

And maybe some Bacon. But that’s a whole different Valentine Story. :)

Red Velvet Banana Pancakes

HAPPY VALENTINE’S DAY!!!!!!

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Red Velvet Banana Pancakes
Makes approximately 16 pancakes

Ingredients:

2 Cups All-purpose Flour
1 Tablespoon Cocoa Powder
3 Tablespoons Granulated Sugar
2 Teaspoons Baking Powder
½ Teaspoon Baking Soda
½ Teaspoon Salt
2 Cups Buttermilk
1 Egg
3 Tablespoons Unsalted Butter, melted and cooled slightly
½ Tablespoon Red Food Color
2 Cups Sliced Bananas
Vegetable Oil
Maple Syrup

In a medium bowl, sift the flour, cocoa powder, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt together. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, buttermilk milk, melted butter, and food coloring. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and whisk gently just until combined.

Heat oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet set over medium heat. Once the oil starts shimmering, use paper towels to wipe the pan so only a thin, even coating of oil covers the bottom and sides. Use a ¼ cup measure to portion the batter into the pan. Top each pancake with a layer of sliced bananas, gently pressing them into the batter. Cook on the first side until the edges are set and bubbles form on the surface, about 2 minutes. Use a spatula to flip the pancakes and cook for 1-2 minutes on the second side, or until golden brown and cooked through. Repeat with remaining batter, adding the rest of the oil to the pan if necessary. Serve pancakes with additional banana slices and maple syrup.

 Adapted from Cooks Illustrated

Fresh Blueberry Pancakes….If you make them, they will love you.

Fresh Blueberry Pancakes

Weekends are for lounging and yummy brunches.

Mimosas…..eggs benedict….pastries…..home fries……and pancakes.

Like these blueberry pancakes. Pancakes so dreamily fluffy and delicious that you’ll be thinking about them all week. Which is ok really because if you make a double batch, you can freeze the extras and enjoy them any time you want.

Fresh Blueberry Pancakes

My neighborhood store had a fantastic sale this past weekend on sweet, organic blueberries. As a result, I walked away with 10 pints of them. Excessive? Eh, not so much. Particularly since blueberries also freeze beautifully! After you wash and dry them, lay them in a single layer on a cookie sheet in the freezer. Once the berries freeze, transfer them to freezer lock bags and you’ll have delish berries at your disposal. If you don’t take this extra step, your berries will be frozen together in one huge clump—and that’s no bueno.

As for these pancakes, if you don’t have blueberries on hand, you can pretty much chop up most fruits to substitute them with. Bananas and mangoes are two of my favorites to rely on but chocolate chips are also amazing in the batter, too.

Moral of the Story: You must make these this weekend. Your family with love you. Your friends will love you. Heck—even your neighbors who will smell these pancakes will also love you.

And that is just too much Love to pass up on <3

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Blueberry Pancakes
From Cooks Illustrated
Makes approximately 16 pancakes

Ingredients:

1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 cups milk
2 cups (10 oz) unbleached all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 large egg
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled slightly
2 teaspoons vegetable oil
1 cup fresh blueberries or frozen blueberries, rinsed and dried

Whisk the lemon juice and milk together in a measuring cup. Set aside while you prepare the other ingredients. (Alternatively, you can use 2 cups of buttermilk in place of the milk/lemon juice.)

In a medium bowl, whisk the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt together. Add the egg and melted butter to the milk and whisk to combine. Add the dry ingredients to the wet and whisk gently just until combined (the batter will be lumpy, that’s fine).

Heat 1 teaspoon of the oil in a 12-inch nonstick skillet set over medium heat. Once the oil starts shimmering, use paper towels to wipe the pan so only a thin, even coating of oil covers the bottom and sides. Use a 1/4 cup measure to portion the batter into the pan. Top each pancake with about 1 tablespoon of blueberries. Cook on the first side until the edges are set and bubbles form on the surface, about 2 minutes. Use a spatula to flip the pancakes and cook for 1-2 minutes on the second side, or until golden brown and cooked through. Repeat with remaining batter, adding the rest of the oil to the pan if necessary.

Oeufs en Cocotte with Mushrooms

Oeufs en Cocotte with Mushrooms

 

 

Eggs.

So simple, so delicious, so versatile.

I recently got the opportunity to try out Safest Choice™Pasteurized Eggs and was excited at the chance to cook with them. In many recipes, eggs are served undercooked or even raw. For some, this can be a wary call as Salmonella (salmonellosis) is quite a serious concern. As such, it’s important to always use the freshest eggs when cooking. And eggs pasteurized in their shells is even a safer bet!

 

 

 

I’m one of those people who could eat breakfast all day long. Eggs Benedict rank among my favorite breakfast/brunch dishes—-right up there with a big ol’ plate of rice, SPAM, and an egg over easy. Now that’s some comfort food!

I definitely wanted to make a breakfast/brunch dish using Safest Choice™Pasteurized Eggs and first on my list were Oeufs en Cocotte……also known as Shirred Eggs.

 

Oeufs en Cocotte with Mushrooms

Oeufs en Cocotte are baked eggs in a water bath. The yolks are meant to remain on the runny side but this unctuousness is fabulous to dip toast into. As for the sauteed mushrooms—-well, y’all know I try to sneak mushrooms into almost everything I make :)

I opted not to add any cream to the eggs as I didn’t think it’s needed–especially because of the Gruyere. But by all means, it won’t hurt my feelings if you add a splash in. And best yet, Oeufs en Cocotte are so easy and look so fancy-schmancy that they are perfect to entertain with!

Stay tuned for Monday’s post when I share how I used Safest Choice™Pasteurized Eggs in a rich and decadent dessert!

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Oeufs en Cocotte with Mushrooms
Serves 2

Ingredients:

2 Fresh Eggs
1 Cup Mushrooms (I used a mix of crimini and shitakes)
2 Tablespoons Gruyere Cheese
1 Tablespoon Shallots, diced
1 Garlic Clove, finely diced
2 Sprigs Fresh Thyme
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
Butter
Salt and Pepper

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.

Heat olive oil in a skillet and sauté shallots until translucent. Add mushrooms and cook until tender, about 5-6 minutes. Add thyme leaves and garlic and cook for an additional 1-2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Butter 2 ramekins. Place ½ of the mushroom mixture into each ramekin and top with the cheese. Carefully crack one egg into each ramekin and season with salt and pepper. Place ramekins into a baking dish and fill with boiling water until it reaches ½ way up the sides of the ramekins. Transfer the dish to the oven and bake for 15-20 minutes until the eggs whites have set but the yolks are still a runny.

Carefully remove from water bath and serve with toast.

* I received Safest Choice™Pasteurized Eggs to sample, however, all views and opinions expressed are my own.

Garlic Bagels

Garlic Bagels

As much as I enjoyed the Homemade Plain Bagels from a few weeks ago, I still felt there was much room for exploration as far as bagels were concerned.

Especially since I was fixated on creating a Garlic Bagel.

Garlic Bagels

When I came across a recipe from Ultimate Bread, I just knew it would be great to adapt into a garlic version. Especially since it didn’t require a sponge. Score!

On half of the bagels, I sprinkled sea salt on the tops and on the other half I brushed on a garlic-olive oil mixture. At the end of the day, the latter won in flavor. Deliciously garlicky with a yummy crunch created by the olive oil. YUM!

Garlic Bagels

The texture of these bagels were perfect—a wonderful balance of soft and chewy. As for the garlic flavor—it was exactly what I was looking for. Almost like a breakfast garlic bread :)

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Garlic Bagels
Adapted From Ultimate Bread
Makes 8 Bagels

2 Teaspoon Dry Yeast
1½ Tablespoon Sugar
½ Tablespoon Garlic Powder
1¼ Cups Warm Water
3½ Cups Unbleached flour, plus extra for kneading
1½ Teaspoon Salt
1 Tablespoon Garlic, finely minced
3 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Tablespoons Corn Meal
1 Teaspoon Baking Soda
Vegetable Oil

Sprinkle the yeast and sugar into 1/2 cup of the water in a small bowl. Leave for 5 minutes and then stir to dissolve. In a large bowl, mix the flour, garlic powder and salt together. Form a well in the center and pour in the dissolved yeast.

Pour half of the remaining water into the well. Mix in the flour and stir in the reserved water as needed, forming a firm and moist dough. Turn out onto a floured surface and knead until smooth and elastic, about 10 minutes. Gradually work in as much additional flour as possible while comfortably kneading to form a stiff and firm dough.

Put the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, turning the dough to coat it. Cover with a towel and let rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size. Punch down and let the dough rest 10 minutes.

Divide the dough into 8 pieces. Shape each piece into a ball – cup between your hands and press the bottoms together between your palms. Press down to get rid of air bubbles and roll the dough between your palm and the work surface to form a smooth ball. Coat a finger in flour and press it through each ball to form a ring.

Work the rest of your fingers into the hole, stretching the ring and widening the hole to about 1/3 of the bagel’s diameter. Place the bagels on a lightly oiled baking sheet and cover with a damp towel. Let rest for 10 minutes and preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.

In a small bowl, mix olive oil and garlic together. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and then reduce to a simmer. Carefully sprinkle in the baking soda. Use a perforated skimmer to lower the bagels into the water in batches of 2-3. Boil, uncovered, until they rise to the surface, about 1 minute. Turn them over once. Then remove from the pan, letting the water drain, and transfer to a lightly oiled baking sheet that has been sprinkled with corn meal. Bake 12-15 minutes. Remove bagels from oven. Using a brush, coat the bagels with the olive oil-garlic mixture. Return back to oven and back until golden—about 5 minutes. Remove and cool on a wire rack. Bagels can be kept in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

Homemade Plain Bagels

Homemade Plain Bagels

 

One of the things I miss most about San Jose is my beloved little bagel spot.

It was a cozy little family-owned bagel shop that was a gem of the community. The staff were some of the nicest people around and even when I would fumble in at 6am, they would always greet me with warm hellos—-and of course my cheese bagel with jalepeno spread. AH-MAY-ZING!

I’ve really been missing those delicious bagels lately so when I saw the post on Tasty Kitchen for homemade bagels, I knew I had to give them a try. Meredith’s take on them were straight forward and easy to follow. I especially appreciated the short proofing time—which is always a plus in my book!

I really liked the texture of the bagels as it yielded the lovely chewiness that I am so fond of. However, after my bagels cooled down, they began to flatten out. She had commented to another reader that this may happen when you let the dough rest too long but I only had mine out for about 20 minutes.  I was a bit Sad Panda but I would love to try it again and substitute some of AP flour for wheat.

Nonetheless it was a fun recipe to make!

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Homemade Plain Bagels
From An Epic Change
Makes 1/2 Dozen

Ingredients:

1½ teaspoon yeast
½ tablespoon sugar
⅔ cup warm water + extra
½ tablespoon vegetable oil
¾ teaspoon salt
2 cups all purpose flour

In the bottom of your mixer bowl, combine 2/3 cup water, sugar, and yeast and let the yeast develop for about 5 minutes. Add in flour, vegetable oil, and salt and mix with a dough hook (or by hand) until the dough is elastic and tough. You may need to add in a bit of extra water, but do it little by little. Let the dough sit and rise in a warm place for  20-30 minutes.

Turn dough out onto a floured surface and knead. Cut into 6 equal pieces. Roll each individual piece into a “snake” long enough to wrap around your palm. Dip each end of the dough in water and press together in your palm, forming a circle. Place the formed bagels on a floured board and allow to rise another 20-30 minutes.

Bring 6 cups of water to a boil in a heavy-bottomed pot. When the water is gently boiling, place 2-3 bagels into the water for 1 minute and then flip to boil on the other side for another minute. Remove the bagels, place them on paper towels to take off excess moisture, then place on a baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining bagels. Bake in the oven on 425 degrees for 18 minutes, turning them over after 10 minutes. Cool on wire racks and enjoy!