BRUNCH TIME - Strawberry French Toast












This is another brunch option, this time not from "Brunch at Bobby's". I just looked for the most decadent version  of the American style breakfast French Toast with fruits, cream cheese and nuts. I am not a big fan of the plain french toast with maple syrup, but if you add some fruits and cream to it, I am all for it. This one has it all, fruits, nuts, cream and you can add syrup.

Ingredients


Filling
  • 2-3 thick slices of Challah bread (a braided sweet bread) or white french or Italian bread
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter (room temperature) + 2 tablespoons for frying
  • 2-4 ounces cream cheese (softened) or mascarpone
  • 1/3 cup of whipped cream (optional)
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 Tablespoon powdered sugar (and more for dusting)
  • 1 cup diced fresh strawberries
  • 1 banana, sliced (optional for topping)
Egg batter:
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 Tablespoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Breading:
  • 1 cup crushed cornflakes or raisin brans (slightly crushed)
  • 1 cup sliced almonds (or walnuts)

Preparation


  1. In a small bowl, mix 2 tablespoons butter with the cream cheese (or mascarpone) till combined. Fold in the whipped cream. Add the vanilla extract, powdered sugar and diced strawberries and mix carefully. Keep some of the strawberries as topping. 
  2. Slice the bread into thick slices (about 1.5inch). Make an incision, about 3/4 through the bread so that it creates a pocket. Spoon the cream cheese - strawberry mix into the pocket, don't overload. 
  3. In a shallow bowl, prepare the egg batter by beating and mixing the eggs, milk, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla. In another shallow bowl, mix the cornflakes and almonds.  
  4. Now, dip the bread slices first into the egg mixture and soak both sides for about 20 seconds. Then, dip them into the cereal mix. 
  5. Heat the remaining 2 tablespoons butter in a big frying pan. When the butter is melted, add the bread slices and brown on each side for 3 minutes.
  6. Remove the bread from the skillet and serve warm. Cut in halves or triangles, sprinkle with the remaining diced strawberries, banana slices and powdered sugar. 



 








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Wiener Sausage and Veggies over Egg Noodles


This is a fast dish that I learned during my college time. My dorm mates used to cook this in our kitchen. I might have done a few changes to it, but I got inspired to it by them as it is fast, uses a bunch of veggies and wiener sausages and has a nice sauce with it.

Ingrediens


  • 2 tablespoons oil
  • 1 onion - diced
  • 1 red bell pepper - diced (1/2 inch)
  • 1-2 carrots - sliced
  • 4 wiener sausage (best pork, german style)
  • 1 can mushrooms
  • 1 can corn
  • 1 can peas
  • 2 tablespoon cream
  • 3 tablespoons cream cheese (best the ones with herbs or chives and onions in it)
  • 1/2 tablespoon vegetable or chicken bouillon (in powder form, not the liquid)
  • salt, pepper

Preparation


  1. Heat the oil in a large frying pan. Add the onions and sauté till translucent. Add the bell pepper and carrot and fry for 3 minutes. Cover the frying pan and let the veggies steam for about 5 minutes. 
  2. Now, start preparing the sauce by adding salt and pepper to the veggies. Mix and add 1/3 cup of water. Add 1/2 tablespoon of vegetable bouillon spice, mix and let boil for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Add the wiener sausage and mushroom, cook for 5 minutes. Add the corn and peas. Stir well and cook till all the veggies are soft.
  4. Finish the sauce by adding another 1/2 - 1 cup of water. Mix in 2-3 tablespoons of cream cheese and 2 tablespoons of cream. Add salt, pepper and more vegetable bouillon to taste.
  5. Serve over egg noodles, best if they are wide noodles. 







Citronata





This is another drink from Bobby Flay's "Brunch at Bobby's". It fits perfect to any brunch.

Ingredients (1 serving):

  • 4 oz Orange Soda
  • 1/2 oz Aperol
  • 1/2 White Wine (original: French Aperitif Wine)

Preparation:

Mix everything together and serve with ice. Garnish with slices of orange and mint sprigs. 

Note: Feel free to substitute the white wine for a French Aperitif Wine as the original recipe suggests. However, we thought the drink already pretty sweet and preferred the white wine.












BRUNCH TIME - Frittata with roasted peppers and asparagus





I just love brunch. This is another recipe inspired by Bobby Flay's "Brunch at Bobby's". I added some potato and asparagus, feel free to substitute any vegetables you like. A frittata is an egg dish that starts on the oven, but then finishes off baking in the oven. Be careful to handle the skillet as it gets really hot...

I served the frittata with a roasted tomato sauce and fresh sour cream that I mixed with some chives. The tangy taste of the tomatoes and the coldness of the sour cream are a good addition.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 bunch fresh asparagus - cut into 3 inch pieces
  • 1/2 cup roasted red peppers - sliced
  • 3 spring onions - sliced
  • 1 cooked potato - sliced
  • 1 cup cheese (pepper jack, smoked gruyere or parmesan) - grated
  • 1/3 cup feta cheese - cubed
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme - chopped
  • 6-9 eggs
  • 2 tablespoons sour cream
  • 2 tablespoons cream cheese
  • salt, pepper
  • Optional: Sour cream mixed with fresh chives

Roasted Tomato Sauce:
  • olive oil
  • 1 pint cherry tomatoes - cut in halves
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • salt
  • fresh basil

Preparation:

  1. Preheat the oven to 450 degree Fahrenheit.
  2. In a skillet, heat the oil and add green onion, roasted pepper and asparagus. Sauté until tender (3-5min). Add the cooked potato, season with salt and pepper, and let fry for a few more minutes, till it gets slightly crispy.
  3. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, cheese, feta cheese, sour cream, cream cheese and thyme. Add salt and pepper. 
  4. Pour the egg-cheese mixture over the vegetables in the skillet. You can give the mixture a quick stir so that the vegetables are evenly spread out and do not only stick to the bottom of the frittata. Cook till the eggs begin to set slightly, about 5 minutes, you can notice it when the sides get solid.
  5. Place the skillet in the oven and bake for 10-15 minutes till eggs are completely set and are lightly browned and fluffy.
  6. Remove from oven and carefully slide frittata onto a cutting board and cut into wedges. Sprinkle with parsley. 
  7. Serve with tomato sauce and sour cream (mix some chives into the sour cream). 

Tomato Sauce:
Heat oil in a small pan, add the tomatoes, minced garlic and salt. Cook for about 2-3 minutes until tomatoes are slightly burst and soft. Add basil and remove from heat.











My Mom's "Rinder-Rouladen" (stuffed beef rolls)



One of my favorite dishes... The sauce is just delicious, as I was little I didn't like the meat too much, so I just kept eating potatoes with the sauce :)

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon oil, 2 tablespoon butter
  • 4 beef rouladen (very thin cut)
  • 1 onion (very thin sliced in half rings)
  • Harissa (Indonesian hot chili sauce)
  • Mustard
  • Biber Salcasi (Turkish hot red chili pepper paste)
  • salt, pepper
  • tooth pick or metal skewer (also possible: white yarn)
  • 3 tablespoon "Sossenbinder" (or corn starch)

  • Serve with a side of starch (dumplings, potatoes, or spaetzle) and a side of vegetables (beans, red cabbage or sauerkraut)

Preparation

As rouladen, I would suggest to buy beef that is already cut for "rouladen". This means, the beef will be very flat and thin and very wide. If you have problems finding these cuts, just try to get cuts that are as thin as possible and then pound them to additionally flatten them.

Prepare the rouladen:
Season each beef cut with salt and pepper, then add splotches of harissa, mustard and biber salcasi on them. Use a knife and spread it evenly, so that the entire beef cut is covered. Now, add the really thin onion slices and cover the cut. Roll them up and use a tooth pick, metal skewer or white yarn to hold them together.

Note: To give the rouladen a little bit more flavor, you can add thinly sliced German bacon. German bacon is white and slightly different than the American breakfast bacon (see picture).

Cook the rouladen:
Now, heat up the oil and butter in a frying pan. Add the rouladen and sear them quickly on all sides. Then, let them brown for about 5-8min. This is the most important step for the sauce, as it will add the flavor to the sauce base. Now, transfer the rouladen in a larger pot and add water till they are completely covered. Try to scrape out every little bit of sauce and bits from the frying pan (these are the flavorful parts) and transfer it to the pot. Add water to the seemingly empty frying pan, reheat and stir and add that water to the pot. There is always a little sauce left that you will otherwise not get out of it. This process is called diglacing the frying pan. Bring the pot with the roulades and sauce to a boil, put the lid on the pot so that it is half-way open and let the rouladen cook for 2 hours till they are soft (use a fork to test it out). While it is cooking, keep checking that enough water is in the pot, add water if necessary.

Finish the sauce:
In the end, take the rouladen out of the sauce and place on a plate. Add salt and pepper to the sauce and stir. Now,  add the "Sossenbinder" (substitute with corn starch if not available) to the water and bring back to a boil. Be careful and add first 1 tablespoon, bring to a boil and stir. It does take a few minutes before the sauce thickens, so be patient. If it does not thicken enough, add another one and so on. When the sauce reached the desired thickness, add the rouladen back into it.

Serve with potato dumplings and beans (or other vegetables). If you want to go real "German" you will serve it with spaetzle and sauerkraut or red cabbage.


Harissa, Mustard and Biber Salcasi 

German bacon

thin onion slices







Sear the beef

boiling the rouladen

sauce has been thickened

potato dumplings





BRUNCH TIME - Spinach Gruyere Strata with sautéed tomatoes



This is another great recipe from Bobby Flay's "Brunch at Bobby's". Perfect for a Saturday Brunch with friends. Don't forget to serve it with the tomato sauce as that gave it some very fresh flavors. We served the strata with some mini german pancakes as dessert and citronata (orange soda with Aperol and French aperitif wine) as a drink.

Ingredients:

  • 6 cups French bread (day old) - cubed
  • 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon oil
  • 1 large Spanish onion
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • salt, pepper
  • 1 box (10oz) frozen spinach (thawed and seasoned with salt, pepper)
  • 10 eggs
  • 2 cups aged gruyere cheese - grated
  • 3 cups milk
  • 1 cup cream
  • 2 tablespoon mustard
  • 1 tablespoon fresh thyme - chopped
  • 1/8 tablespoon nutmeg

Sautéed cherry tomato sauce
  • 3 tablespoon oil
  • 2 pints cherry tomatoes - quartered
  • salt, pepper
  • 3 tablespoons fresh chives - sliced

Preparation:


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degree F. Put the bread cubes on a baking pan and toast in the oven for about 10 min until lightly golden brown on both side. Check after 5 minutes and flip the cubes around. You can also put the cubes under the broiler for a few minutes if available, but keep an eye on them. Take out, set aside and let cool.
  2. Preheat the oven to 350 degree F. In the meantime, heat oil and butter in a pan, add onion and toss in the oil, add sugar, salt and pepper. Sauté the onions on low heat until golden brown and caramelized, for about 30min. Stir occasionally.
  3. In a large bowl, combine the cubes, onions, thawed spinach. Add salt, pepper, cayenne pepper as the spinach is a little flavor less. In another bowl, whisk together the eggs, add 1 1/2cups of the cheese, milk, cream, mustard, salt, pepper, thyme and nutmeg. 
  4. Butter a baking dish (9-13 inches), add the brad cubes, pour the egg mixture over the bread and press cubes down till they are completely submerged.
  5. Let the strata bake for about 1h at 350 degree F. until the top is golden brown and the liquid has set completely. Then add the remaining 1/2 cup of cheese on top of it and let bake for another 10 minutes. Take out and let cool for a few minutes.
  6. While the strata is cooling, prepare the tomato sauce. Heat the oil, add the tomatoes, salt and pepper and let cook for a few minutes till they are soft and slightly burst. Remove from heat and add the chives. Sever with the strata.









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