Monday, March 18, 2013

Puffing Up Sunday Brunch

I've been such a slacker with breakfast lately. It's just too easy to have a bowl of cereal and continue on with the day. While that is the weekday routine, on weekends, I like to treat myself. But the strawberries went bad and the yogurt wasn't on sale and the last box of croissants tasted stale. Meh. They can't do much to a box of cereal.

Plus, the long days of cloudy weather influence what I really want to do in the kitchen. The pattern since the next to last week in February has been three days of clouds with two of those yielding precipitation; one day of mostly cloudy; one day of sunshine and back into the clouds. I'm really tired of turning on the weather and hearing the words, "Alberta Clipper" in the forecast. I like winter weather. I wouldn't like living where it was 72 all year. Still, the nearly constant cloudiness puts a damper in what I want to eat and cook.

Sunday, I felt inspired. I spent part of Friday poking around in the Pillsbury web site. They have lot of recipes for fast food. I'm interested in that. A roast that takes 2 hours to cook is not as enticing, at this stage of my life, as a sliced beef dish that takes 15 minutes to prepare and 20 minutes to cook. I can do that. So, there was interest in this Puff Pancake with Caramelized Fruit.

I like making puff pancakes. I have two recipes already, one with applesauce and one with sausage and cheese. I need another pie pan. I'll have to add that to the list of things to get when I have a few extra pennies. I should get a glass one.

Technically, there is nothing wrong with this pie pan other than it's old. The cracks in the glaze were more evident after I made the pancake. But, realistically, my making a lot of pies to justify the purchase of a glass pie pan is very slim. If I'm inspired to churn out pies, I'll cross the need for another pie plate then. The pancake puffed up just like it was supposed to.

A note to myself, I need to prep the fruit BEFORE making the batter. This is something the recipe doesn't say. I guess they assume cooks know to do that, but I would bet many do not. While the pancake was cooking, 14 to 18 minutes, I was supposed to be cooking the fruit. I spent a majority of that time peeling and slicing the apples and pears that went into this. So, the pancake was done just as I tossed the fruit into the frying pan to cook. I kept the pancake in the oven to stay warm, but I think that dried it out too much and led to it being hard to cut when serving time came.

You saute 2 pears and 3 apples for a couple minutes and then add a half cup of dried cranberries and a cup of packed brown sugar. The brown sugar caramelizes with the juice of the fruit.

I tossed in dried blueberries and cherries, which is what I had on hand. I think varying the fruits would make this very interesting. I'm not real fond of peaches, but sliced peaches and apples with raisins has an appeal. I would NOT use canned fruit as that would just fall apart in the cooking process. In fact, the pears I used were probably too ripe for this. They started to break apart while this was being cooked. You cook the fruit part for 10 minutes.

The recipe says it makes 4 servings so the puff pancake is quartered and the fruit scooped on top.

I added bacon I cooked earlier in the week. A glass of orange juice and this was an excellent start to the day. Plus, I have 3 more sections to eat. I divided the extra fruit into three containers. If I want something other than Cheerios in the morning, I can make this. I don't think I'd freeze it so it should be eaten soon. I think supper looks like a good time.

Beverage:  LaCroix Berry Sparkling Water


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