December 18, 2013

What’s Cooking: Christmas breakfast ideas

With all those presents to open, nobody wants to spend Christmas morning in the kitchen. So to keep you with the family, we have some easy dishes to suggest.

With all those presents to open, nobody wants to spend Christmas morning in the kitchen. So to keep you with the family, we have some easy dishes to suggest.

Created by Alison Ladman for The Associated Press, the raspberry and cream cheese stuffed breakfast biscuit is fast and easy to assemble. It also can be prepped a week or more in advance, then frozen. Just bake it Christmas morning right from the freezer.

And if you don’t care for raspberry, use any jam you prefer. Strawberry, apricot or even fig would be delicious.

The second option is a breakfast casserole from J.M. Hirsch that can be prepped the night before, then just popped into the oven to bake unattended. It is equal parts casserole, hash browns, fruit crumble and French toast.

Finally, for egg lovers we offer a 10-minute pan quiche, a Washington Post recipe that was designed for two servings but can easily be doubled, using a second pan or one larger pan.

Happy holiday!


Raspberry and cream cheese stuffed biscuits

Prep time: 20 minutes

Cook time: 20 minutes

Serves 16

This breakfast biscuit is simple enough to assemble Christmas morning, but also can be prepped in advance. To do so, assemble as directed, then cover tightly with plastic wrap and freeze. When ready to serve, bake at 400 degrees for 25 to 30 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through.


3 cups all-purpose flour

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon baking soda

1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 cup buttermilk

1/3 cup heavy cream

2 eggs

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes

1 cup (8 ounces) raspberry jam

4 ounces cream cheese, room temperature

2 tablespoons turbinado sugar


If cooking immediately, heat the oven to 400 degrees.

Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt and sugar. In another bowl, whisk together the buttermilk, cream and eggs.

Stir the butter cubes into the flour, flattening them and breaking them up slightly. Gently stir the buttermilk mixture into the flour and butter. It should make a shaggy dough with clumps of butter clearly visible. Dollop half of the mixture into the prepared pan, patting it with slightly dampened hands to cover the bottom of the pan.

Spread the jam over the surface, coming to just a 1/2 inch from the edge. Dot small dollops of cream cheese over the jam. Dollop the remaining biscuit dough over the top, then sprinkle with turbinado sugar. Place the pan in the freezer for 10 minutes. (If not cooking immediately, cover tightly with plastic wrap and freeze.)

If cooking immediately, bake for 15 to 20 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through. Serve warm.

Per serving: 260 calories; 120 calories from fat (46 % of total); 14 g fat (9 g sat.; 0 g trans); 60 mg chol.; 29 g carb.; 2 g fiber; 9 g sugar; 5 g protein; 350 mg sodium.


10-minute pan quiche

Serves 2

This might remind you more of a frittata with a bottom crust. Don’t be confused: The length of time in the recipe title refers to how long it takes to cook this stovetop version of the classic baked French egg dish.

Bread crumbs moistened with a little olive oil are pressed into the pan and toasted to form the makeshift crust. You can process your own using day-old French bread, as we’ve done here, or you can use store-bought garlic croutons.

You could add or substitute fillings, such as cheese, olives, scallions and/or mint.


1/2 medium tomato

1 ounce spinach leaves

2 ounces day-old French or other crusty bread (about 1/4 of a regular-size baguette; may substitute garlic croutons; see headnote)

1/2 to 1 teaspoon herbes de Provence

1 tablespoon olive oil

4 large eggs

1/4 cup water

1/4 teaspoon kosher salt


Coarsely chop the tomato (to yield 1/4 to 1/2 cup). Finely chop the spinach to yield 1/4 to 1/3 packed cup.

Tear the bread into chunks and place it in a food processor along with the herbes de Provence (to taste). Pulse to form small crumbs, about 11/4 cups.

Heat the oil in a small-to-medium nonstick skillet over medium heat; swirl to coat the bottom and halfway up the sides. Pour the crumb mixture into the skillet, using a flexible spatula to press it to form a crust. Toast for 45 seconds to 1 minute or until fragrant. Monitor the heat and adjust as needed; if it’s too high, the crust will burn before the egg sets after it’s poured in, and if it’s too low the crust will not become golden brown.

Whisk together the eggs, water and salt in a medium bowl. Pour evenly over the crumb crust in the skillet. Sprinkle the spinach and tomato evenly over the egg. Reduce the heat to medium-low. Cover and cook for about 10 minutes, until the egg is just set but still looks moist.

Uncover and remove from the heat. Gently loosen the edges of the crust, then slide the pan quiche onto a cutting board. Cut in half and divide between plates. Serve right away.

Per serving: 293 calories, 18g fat, 4g saturated fat, 423mg cholesterol, 566mg sodium, 17g carbohydrates, 2g dietary fiber, 2g sugar, 16g protein.


French toast hash crumble casserole

Prep time: 15 minutes (can chill overnight)

Cook time: 1 hour

Serves 12

This is good served with a drizzle of maple syrup. For a more savory version, add chopped ham when combining the potatoes and cheese.


9 eggs

2/3 cup half-and-half

1/2 teaspoon dried thyme

1/2 teaspoon salt

1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper

8 slices sandwich bread

4 cups (about 1 pound) frozen shredded potatoes

3 large apples, peeled, cored and diced

8 ounces shredded cheese

2 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup rolled oats

1 cup packed brown sugar

1 cup butter, softened

1 tablespoon cinnamon


In a bowl, whisk together the eggs, half-and-half, thyme, salt and pepper. Set aside.

Coat a deep 9-by-13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Arrange 4 slices of the bread in an even layer over the bottom of the pan.

In a large bowl, toss together the potatoes, apples and cheese. Spread the mixture evenly over the bread. Pour half of the egg mixture evenly over the potatoes and apples, pressing it with a fork to help it absorb evenly. Top the potato mixture with the remaining 4 slices of bread. Pour the remaining egg mixture over the bread and press gently with a fork to help it absorb.

In the same bowl used to mix the potatoes and apples, combine the flour, oats, brown sugar, butter and cinnamon. Use your hands to mix the ingredients together until evenly blended. Spread the crumble topping evenly over the bread. Cover tightly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until morning.

When ready to bake, heat the oven to 375 degrees. Uncover the baking dish and bake for 1 hour, or until lightly browned and crisp.

Per serving: 530 calories; 250 calories from fat (47% of total); 28 g fat (15 g sat.; 0.5 g trans fats); 200 mg chol.; 57 g carb.; 3 g fiber; 26 g sugar; 15 g pro.; 350 mg sod.

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