Maple Chipotle Breakfast Biscuits 

Usually, Merideth and I skype for dinner, but with the holidays keeping us busy, it was easier this week to meet in the morning. Not to say that breakfast for dinner isn’t a good option, too 🙂

For this I used the homemade chicken nuggets recipe from an earlier blog session! This particular morning I made two servings, but you can adjust for a bigger crowd, with the understanding that one per person is never enough!

Serves 2

Ingredients

  • 4 biscuits, halved
  • 12 chicken nuggets (or store bought and cooked according to package directions)
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 4tbs chipotle pepper sauce, or to taste
  • Pinch of salt

Instructions

  1. Mix maple syrup, chipotle sauce, and a pinch of salt in a medium bowl. Taste and adjust to your preference.
  2. Toss chicken nuggets into sauce and stir to coat. Remove with a fork, shaking off excess sauce.
  3. Serve inside biscuit and enjoy!

Shakshuka Breakfast Pizza

For this week, Amanda and I were in the mood for some brunch. Since with the holiday and the new year, it’s definitely brunch hosting season. We wanted to share some interesting, low maintenance, and somewhat nutritious brunch ideas that would definitely please a crowd, just in case you still had a few people around to share a meal and you were sick of something too heavy. This breakfast pizza, a twist on the classic Shakshuka, might be something that is a little different, has a little bit of a kick to wake everyone up and is easy as can be. In addition, if you have a big day of eating ahead of you, as I often do when family is around, this will both be likely a different flavor profile than your future meals and has at least some nutrition. Overall, it’s a nice meal to add to your breakfast rotation, even if it’s not a special occasion and just a random Saturday, and its convenience is big selling point.

If you’re hosting a New Years Day get-together, sometimes being alone in the kitchen preparing a feast can be a much needed social pause (introverts ftw!). Often, though, at breakfast I just want to enjoy my tea and not dirty too many dishes. Since this pizza’s sauce and crust can be made in advance, it’s fairly low maintenance (which, I mean, I don’t know how you celebrate New Year’s Eve, but it you might not be in the mood to do too much). However, the results are pretty impressive so if you still need to get away, feel free to relax and sip your tea while hiding in the kitchen and pretending you’re slogging away.

Pizza Sauce Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of crushed tomatoes
  • 1 tsp Hungarian Half-Sharp paprika
  • 1/2 tsp ground cumin
  • 1/2 cup diced onion
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 tbsp vegetable or grapeseed oil
  • Pinch of salt

Sauce Instructions:

Heat a small saucepot over medium heat and add the oil. Add your diced onions and salt to the pot and sweat them for 2-3 minutes until translucent in color. Add the minced garlic and stir in with onions, cooking for an additional minute.

Add your remaining sauce ingredients and simmer for 5-10 minutes. Allow to cool slightly before adding to your pizza or make ahead of time and store in the fridge for up to 3 days in a sealed container.

Other Pizza Ingredients:

  • Pizza Crust (I used premade Naan but any flatbread would do, or you can make your own)
  • Feta Cheese crumbles
  • Eggs
  • Spinach Leaves

Pizza Assembly:

  1. Preheat your oven to 425°F (if using a pizza stone or baking steel, preheat the oven for 45 minutes at least).
  2. Spread a nice dollop of sauce onto your pizza crust (up to you how much you want although I went a little thicker than I normally would since Shakshuka is all about the sauce).
  3. Top with a few spinach leaves and feta cheese evenly distributed.
  4. If you’re planning on using a pizza stone, I would recommend transferring your crust and ingredients at this point in time. If using a baking sheet, no worries. Create a divot in the pizza sauce if possible and crack an egg or two into the divots or wherever you think the egg will not run off the sides. Try to make your egg placement so that the pizza will have good egg coverage. 2E77123B-C890-4740-B6FC-B17B999211F6
  5. If using that pizza stone/steel, quickly and carefully crack the egg directly onto the pizza on the stone.
  6. Bake for 12-18 minutes, monitoring how the eggs are set. Ideally you want set whites and fairly runny yolks. Remove from oven, allow to cool slightly and serve. Enjoy!

Wine Pairing: I mean, I know a Mimosa is my go-to breakfast drink, but that’s what I’d probably have. If you’re going the breakfast for dinner route or if you wanted to just go full on glass of wine (I’m not above it) I think I’d still pick a light wine like Pinot Grigio but a Beaujolais would go well also.

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Pumpkin Spiced Granola with Chocolate

This is the time of year that is both incredibly cheerful and magical with the twinkling lights on all the houses and sweet aromas filling our kitchens, it can also be incredibly stressful as we all rush to make a dish for the office potluck we forgot or shop til we drop for the perfect gift for all our loved ones. While we know there are so many people in our life we want to show that we appreciate, some can slip through the cracks until it’s too late. With Christmas inching closer, Amanda and I wanted to share our answers to some homemade tokens of friendship to give to someone in your life even if that person is yourself (hey, it’s yummy ok?). Plus, with everything else we have to worry about this season, we definitely didn’t want you to have to log any extra kitchen hours then you already are. Granola was my low effort, but still glamorous was my answer to this challenge.

Granola is something that is widely enjoyed but people don’t tend to have it that often or bother with making it themselves. With the pumpkin and wintery spices, it is the perfect festive treat that dresses up nicely in a jar and a ribbon. The ingredients are fairly inexpensive as well so it won’t break the bank, and it’s a nice change of pace from all the Christmas cookies going around (although I love those as well). This granola goes so well topped on a bowl of plain yogurt, which might be a nice switch after all those family slightly heavier family breakfasts that seem to go with the season, or it can be enjoyed as a little sweet snack after dinner. It keeps for a while in the fridge as well so it’s something that can be enjoyed long after the season ends.

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Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup of pumpkin puree
  • 1/3 cup maple syrup
  • 2 tsp cinnamon
  • 1 tsp ground ginger
  • 1/2 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/2 tsp ground nutmeg
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 3 cups old fashioned rolled oats
  • 1/2 cup steel cut oats
  • 1/2 cup raw almonds
  • 1/2 cup of chocolate chips

Instructions: 

  1. Preheat the oven to 325°F.
  2. Combine the oats and almonds in a large mixing bowl.
  3. On the stove over low heat, combine the pumpkin puree, maple syrup, spices and salt and stir until everything is warm and well mixed.
  4. Remove the pumpkin mixture from the heat and pour over your oats. Stir the oats with a wooden spoon until the pumpkin mixture is fully combined.
  5. Spread the oat mixture over a lined baking sheet as flatly and evenly as you can.
  6. Pop the baking sheet in your oven and cook for 45-50 minutes, stirring every 15 minutes or so. This will ensure that the granola doesn’t burn.
  7. After baking, allow the granola to cool fully and then stir in your chocolate chips. You may then transfer to an airtight container and your granola will keep in the fridge for up to two months.

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Breakfast Casserole

When Amanda was kind enough to come and visit me this summer, I knew we’d have a weekend with plenty of kitchen time, and lots of wine. Since I wasn’t sure how energetic we’d be feeling in the mornings, I wanted to have something easily prepped ahead of time and low maintenance for breakfast just in case all we wanted to do was lay on the couch and watch Netflix.

The beauty of this casserole, which is my go-to dish for any brunch hosting occasion, is in both its potential for customization as well as its ability to be assembled the night previous, minus the egg mixture. Then, even on the groggiest of mornings you can whisk up those eggs and pour over everything else, stick it in the oven and take a nap until the timer buzzes. You will be rewarded with a delicious and low maintenance crowd pleaser!

Ingredients:

  • 12 oz of shredded cheese (I like to go 4 oz of velveeta and 8 oz of sharp cheddar but you do you)
  • 2 cups frozen homestyle hashbrown potatoes
  • 1 green bell pepper, diced
  • 1/2 yellow onion, diced
  • 10 oz ground turkey or pork sausage meat
  • 8 eggs
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 2 tsp ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp garlic powder

Instructions: 

  1. Preheat oven to 375°F.
  2. In a skillet over medium-high heat, brown the seasoned ground meat. Use your spatula to make sure it cooks into sausage crumbles. When fully cooked, remove from heat and allow to cool for 5-10 minutes (can be done in advance).
  3. In a 9″x9″ pan, add 8oz of the cheese, potatoes, bell pepper, onion, (cooled) sausage meat, and 1 tsp of salt (you can also add extra pepper if you’d like). Mix all these items together so there is an even distribution. If you do this with your hands, this is where the sausage meat being cool is kind of important.
  4. In a separate bowl, whisk your eggs, milk, remaining salt, pepper and garlic powder together until combined.
  5. Pour egg mixture over your other ingredients in the baking dish. Sprinkle remaining cheese on top.
  6. Cover with foil and bake for 45-55 minutes until the eggs are set. For browning, remove the foil in the last 10 minutes of cooking. Enjoy!

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Wine pairing: Well, I mean you’re probably eating this before noon right? I’d stick with a mimosa to be “socially acceptable” but again, you do you. Also, stay tuned for Amanda’s Bellini recipe if you’re not feeling the orange juice!

 

 

 

Go-Back-to-Sleep Baked Oatmeal

Merideth and I are both runners, and that means getting back from early morning races having to prioritize going back to sleep or having a nutritious breakfast. This quick prep oatmeal solves both of these problems (eventually). Also handy for, let’s face it, mornings you just want to go back to bed for just a little bit longer.

Like some of our other recipes, this oatmeal is flexible to your preferred ingredients. In this case, I used the blueberries and almonds I had on hand, but granola, walnuts, and/or strawberries (or chocolate chips…) would be good too!

Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 2-3 bananas, sliced
  • 1 cup oats
  • 1/4 cup almonds
  • 1 1/2 cups blueberries or raisins
  • 1/2 tsp cinnamon
  • Pinch of salt
  • 1 cup milk
  • 3 tbs honey or agave
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 1/4 cup coconut

    Instructions

    1. Arrange sliced bananas on bottom of slow cooker. Top with raisins or other preferred fruit.
    2. In separate bowl, combine oats, nuts (if using), cinnamon, and salt. Add milk, honey and vanilla and stir.
    3. Pour oatmeal mixture over bananas. Top with any remaining ingredients and coconut.
    4. Cover and cook on low for 2 hours, or until oatmeal is cooked through.

    Wine Pairing: Mimosas, of course!

    Vindaloo Spiced Breakfast Tacos

    As you know, Amanda and I recently took a little run-cation to Nashville where we enjoyed the best experiences the city had to offer and of course the best food. I quite enjoy researching a new town and seeing what restaurant I would be sorry to miss while visiting. When I came across the Chauhan Ale & Masala House in my research I knew I was in love. If you’ve seen these posts, you definitely know that we both have a favorite place in our hearts for both Indian cuisine as well as brunch, and this place does….BOTH!? I had to go. Not even realizing this restaurant is co-owned by the James Beard Award winner Maneet Chauhan, we made our reservation as soon as we could for a nice, lazy Sunday brunch to help our legs heal from the beating the previous morning. While choosing just one thing from the menu was difficult, I chose the Breakfast Parantha Taco and it was absolutely wonderful. It was a flaky Malaysian paratha flatbread with vindaloo sausage, scrambled eggs, provel cheese, kachumber and mango-mint chutney. My only regret is that I could not enjoy more dishes from this restaurant but I knew I wanted to take this idea of a dish home with me.

    Paratha/Parantha is an Indian flatbread that does seem some variation across regions. I did make my own for this recipe since I like to go as little store-bought as possible for these posts at least in initial tests. I used a recipe from my favorite cookbook, Hot Bread Kitchen (check them out–they’re pretty cool), and let me tell you–these were unbelievably delicious. However, making them involved a lot of brushing with butter (see previous sentence about deliciousness), folding, rolling, and more brushing, then folding, rolling, then brushing, then cooking–it was a lot. I was pretty exhausted when i finished the batch. So, if you’re a flatbread expert, have at it (I mean, I don’t regret the results)! Otherwise, grab some tortillas.

    You’ll notice I did not make my own mango-mint chutney but I have included recipes below for Kachumber (which is delicious on its own) as well as an Indian spiced sausage, which I found to be the real star. Now, there are scrambled eggs involved with this one but I have not included a recipe. While I prefer my scrambled eggs Gordon Ramsay style, not everyone does (much to my embarrassment when I tried to make Amanda these style eggs while visiting). It seems as though every chef has a slightly different technique for “perfect scrambled eggs” so you go with the technique most suited to you whether that be creamy, fluffy or any texture in between. Once you have all these elements ready, you can’t go wrong with a delicious taco and an extremely enjoyable brunch. Enjoy!

    Kachumber Salad Topping:

    • 1/2 medium cucumber, seeded
    • 1/2 beefsteak tomato, seeded
    • 1/2 medium red onion
    • 1-2 small green Serrano chiles, seeded
    • 1/4 cup cilantro leaves
    • 1 tbsp vinegar
    • salt & pepper to taste

    To Make:

    • Dice the cucumber, tomato, onion and chiles as evenly as possible. Roughly chop the cilantro leaves.
    • Combine all ingredients including everything you just chopped so beautifully into a small bowl and allow to sit in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
    • Then this is ready to serve on its own as a salad, but also the delicious topping for our breakfast.

    Vindaloo Breakfast Sausage Crumbles

    • 1 lb ground sausage meat of your choice
    • 1 tbsp garam masala
    • 1 tbsp paprika
    • 1 tbsp cumin
    • 1sp turmeric
    • 1/2 tsp coriander
    • Salt & pepper to taste

    To make: 

    • Combine all spices except for salt and pepper in a small bowl so it is easier to add to the meat.
    • Place meat into a small skillet/saucepan and pour in spice mix. Brown the meat and ensure the spices are well combined while cooking (your kitchen will smell amazing).
    • Salt and pepper to your liking and once everything is evenly browned the sausage is ready to top your taco!

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    Other Taco Fixin’s:

    • Scrambled Eggs to your liking (seems like every chef has an opinion these days on the perfect way to cook)
    • Flour tortillas (or paratha if you can get/make it)
    • Crumbled feta or shredded sharp cheddar cheese

    Assembly: 

    • Although I think this part probably self-explanatory and customizable, here’s what I like: I like to add about 2 eggs worth of scrambled eggs on top of my tortilla, top with about 2 tablespoons of sausage, 2 big tablespoons of kachumber and top with cheese.
    • You will have leftover toppings unless you’re cooking for a brunch party (jealous!), so I’d recommend looking into making some freezer burritos for later enjoyment. It’s pretty easy–assemble, roll, wrap well with plastic wrap in a freezer bag and freeze. To reheat, remove plastic wrap and wrap in a paper towel. Then, microwave on high for 2-3 minutes.

    Wine pairing: Well, if we’re doing brunch, have a mimosa! Although any aromatic white wine would also be good–and what I had when I had this for dinner.

    Overnight Gingerbread Cinnamon Rolls

    Amanda and I promise the new year will bring fresh and healthy recipes, but late December is when the sweet treat rules the day. With just a short time before Christmas Day, families are gathering to decorate the tree, gorgeous light displays illuminate the neighborhoods and there is a feeling of joy in the air. Like Thanksgiving, every family has its own traditions to make the holiday season extra special and mine is no different. For me, the Christmas season is when “tradition” truly makes an appearance, whether I decorate the house with my nutcracker collection, my mother *ahem* I mean Santa gifting me a new Holiday Barbie ornament to add to my growing collection, or blasting Christmas music throughout the house subjecting all inhabitants to my singing along.No tradition in my family though, is more iconic or more anticipated than the annual Christmas morning cinnamon rolls.

    As we would excitedly rip through our bursting stockings each Christmas morning I remember the smell of those cinnamon rolls cooking and waiting for the timer to signal their completion; they are a once a year treat. Now, in our family, the canned cinnamon rolls are our tradition and certainly do not disappoint. However, that would not make for a very interesting post, for one, and I’m an adult now and ready to make my own way in traditional recipes. So, while I did not want to just copycat the original, I did want to share this gingerbready spin on our classic with the Distance Dishes family and I’m sure they will be appearing on our Christmas morning menu for years to come. They are more work than the canned option, but they can be made in advance and freeze extremely well. We recently celebrated an early Christmas since my family is spread across the county and these were served. They did not disappoint.

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    Gingerbread Rolls:

    • 4 large egg yolks at room temperature
    • 1 large whole egg at room temperature
    • 1/3 cup molasses
    • 6 tbsp melted butter
    • 3/4 cup milk
    • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour (may need up to 1/2 cup more)
    • 1 1/4 tsp salt
    • 2 1/4 tsp dry yeast
    • 1 tbsp granulated sugar
    • 1 tsp ground ginger
    • 1 tsp ground cloves
    • 1/2 tsp nutmeg, freshly ground
    • 1/2 tsp star anise, ground
    • Cooking spray or vegetable oil

    Cinnamon filling

    • 1 cup brown sugar
    • 1 tsp ground ginger
    • 1 tbsp cinnamon
    • 1/2 sp ground cloves
    • 1/4 tsp salt
    • 4 tbsp melted butter for brushing

    Icing:

    • 1/3 cup cream cheese
    • 1 1/2 cups powdered sugar
    • 2 tbsp milk

    Instructions:

    • Whisk together the egg yolks, whole eggs, molasses, sugar and milk.
    • Transfer this mixture to a stand mixer with a dough hook and add flour, yeast, salt, yeast (not over the salt), butter, ginger, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and star anise. Mix on low to combine for 1-2 minutes.
    • Turn the mixer speed to medium and allow to knead for about 5-6 minutes until dough pulls away from the sides of the bowl. The dough should be fairly wet but not sticky; add more flour if necessary and knead until this consistency.
    • Transfer dough to a large buttered or greased bowl, cover with plastic wrap and allow dough to sit and rise for 2.5 hours.
    • While you are waiting for your dough to rise, mix together the cinnamon filling by stirring together the brown sugar, ground ginger, cinnamon, cloves and salt in a medium bowl. Set aside until ready to roll out the dough.
    • Once the dough has risen and rested, transfer to a large piece of greased parchment paper on a flat surface. Shape the dough into a general rectangle shape and roll out with a rolling-pin (or you can get creative with a wine bottle-life hack!). to a rectangle about 18″ by 14″.
    • Brush the rectangle with the 4 tbsp of the melted butter leaving about 1″ strip at the top unbuttered. Distribute the sugar mixture over the buttered portion of the dough evenly.
    • Starting opposite the unbuttered end, and using the parchment paper to assist, roll the cinnamon roll into a tight cylinder. Pinch the seams closed along the cylinder for a secure roll and turn to seam side down.
    • Using a serrated knife, cut the cylinder into 12 identical slices, about 1.5″ thickness.
    • Butter either  9″ by 13″ baking dish or two 8″ round baking dishes and place in the cinnamon rolls, cut side down, so that they are each just barely touching.
    • Place in the fridge to rest overnight or about 6-18 hours if you’re timing it.*
    • The next morning, place the rolls into a cool oven with a pan of boiling water to create steam and allow for one last rise for 30 minutes.
    • Then, remove both the water and the rolls while you pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
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    After their steam bath in the oven
    • Bake the cinnamon rolls for 30 minutes, and while they are baking make the icing (can also be made ahead of time).
    • Using a mixer with a whisk attachment or a hand mixer, mix together the cream cheese, milk and powdered sugar until combined. Set aside or refrigerate until rolls are baked.
    • Once the rolls are out of the oven, spread the icing evenly over the rolls and serve warm. Enjoy!

    *If you’re looking to make these ahead of time, this is an excellent time to freeze. Tightly wrap the dish and freeze until ready (will keep for about 6 weeks). Once ready, thaw overnight in a cool oven and then resume the steps above starting with adding the pan with boiling water to the oven for 30 minutes. I would not recommend freezing the icing though, but it is fairly easy to assemble. 

    Wine Pairing: Since we typically have this for breakfast, I’d recommend your mimosa of choice to go with this one! Enjoy!

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    yummy yummy!

    French Toast Casserole

    Breakfast is my favorite meal! Add some mimosas and some good friends, and brunch is the highlight of any day. Merideth and I made this on our beach weekend, and I served it again for a rainy Netflix marathon when Hurricane Hermine pushed us inside on Labor Day Weekend. Both times, this was a hit! Quick prep means that you can get the casserole in the oven and, if you’re like us, push play on your Saturday morning cartoons!

    This recipe uses peanut butter, banana, and chocolate chips, but could allow for other combinations as long as the milk/egg mixture is maintained. Next time, I’m thinking blueberries, or maybe some seasonal pumpkin spice!

    Ingredients

    1 loaf day-old challah bread, cubed

    3 bananas, sliced

    3/4 cups chocolate chips

    Milk/Egg Mixture

    1/4-1/2 cup milk of your choice (I have used almond and traditional milk, both good!).

    1 tsp cinnamon

    3/4 cup peanut butter

    6-7 eggs

    Salt

    Depending on how large the loaf is, you may need additional milk/egg mixture to saturate the bread.

    Instructions:

    1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees, and grease 9×13 pan.
    2. Combine chocolate chips, bananas, and bread. Don’t worry if the chocolate chips settle on the bottom!
    3. Blend milk, peanut butter, eggs, and cinnamon until smooth. I recommend using a blender, but a whisk can work if one is unavailable.
    4. Pour egg and milk into bread, and fold until well coated.
    5. Bake all ingredients in 9×13 pan for approximately 35 minutes, and serve with powdered sugar or syrup, if desired.

     

    Chorizo and Egg Breakfast Sub

     

    Amanda and I recently had a girls getaway weekend at the beach, and did all the things we love together. Which is to say, there was a lot of show bingeing, pajamas, wine, and cooking involved that weekend. There was also an unfinished puzzle and some incriminating pictures taken of us in face masques, but that’s neither here nor there. I’m currently having the luxury of living within driving distance of Amanda temporarily, and one of the things I missed living so far away from her was my brunch buddy. Weekend morning breakfast indulgences with friends is one of my favorite things (makes me feel like a true millennial) so I knew I wanted to make us both a hearty breakfast to start our weekend of netflix….must stay energized for such a grueling day.

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    This sandwich’s deliciousness is in it’s customization. It is a fluid recipe and you could change out the vegetables or cheeses to your preferences. However the version pictured, which was made for two, involves:

    2 sub rolls from your favorite bakery

    4 eggs, scrambled

    1/2 red bell pepper

    1/2 onion

    1/2 lb of ground chorizo

    1/4 tsp Garlic Powder

    Salt & Pepper to taste

    • Grate Parmesan cheese, amount to your preference, although I would also recommend a sharp cheddar
    • Slice the sub rolls longways,3/4 of the way through if not pre-sliced.
    • Heat the chorizo in a pan over medium heat and season with salt and pepper until starts to dissipate and chorizo is almost cooked through.
    • Add the pepper and onions and cook the mixture until onions are slightly translucent and peppers are cooked.
    • Spoon chorizo mixture onto the inside of each sandwich roll and spread on one side. Top with half of your cheese.
    • Top the chorizo mixture with half the scrambled eggs on each sandwich and add more cheese to the top.
    • You may need a napkin when eating this as it is a bit messy, but the heat from the chorizo is quite tasty!

     

    Wine pairing: We happened to have some sangria on hand (recipe to come), however a mimosa could certainly never go wrong.