I meant to post this recipe for blueberry brioche French toast casserole before October came around, but then October came around, and very quickly. I mean seriously, can we even believe it’s October already? I’m still thinking it’s June and school just got out, for crying out loud.
Alas, it is October indeed, and I’m beginning to embrace it. Call me basic, but I am very much a lover of all things fall — the cool air, the colored leaves, the warm drinks, the chunky sweaters and scarves and cozy breakfasts like this blueberry brioche number served with a hot cup of coffee. Yes, please.
Welcome to the second installment of this super-fun miniseries of no-bake recipes! I’m enjoying not baking in the heat of the oven while also still enjoying delicious treats, aren’t you? I mean, let’s not forget the no-bake French silk Oreo pie we just devoured. That was fairly epic and very enjoyable.
But anyway, hi. How are you? Before we discuss these crazy-easy and crazy-good no-bake blueberry peanut butter granola bars, I feel like we should catch up.
As I type this, my family and I are in North Dakota. We just finished a week-long stint at Theodore Roosevelt National Park, and to say the experience was transformative is an understatement. We saw wild bison, horses, prairie dogs and weasels; we climbed around 60-million-year-old tree stumps; we forded a river in our bare feet to take a trail (and that makes me feel like official hiker, now that I’ve FORDED something); we ate steak that was skewered to a pitchfork by a cowboy and then dipped in hot oil like meat fondue (guys, I’m not even making this up). We lived life to the fullest here, and I am sunburned and sore and happy and exhausted.
These granola bars were literal lifesavers to us out on the trails. I would give each of the kids half a bar before we headed out, then saved a few more for later. When the hangry-ness set in (which it always did, and not just for the kiddos, ahem), we had these tasty bars on hand. And I loved it, because not only are they good for you and homemade, but they’re extremely satisfying and easy to make in bulk (which I plan to do from now on, because we chowed down on these bars in less than two days).
In my internet life, it may appear that I am always making new, creative meals for me and my family come breakfast, lunch or dinner. That I never eat the same thing twice. That I never eat a frozen burrito I found at the bottom of my freezer or the last five dino-shaped chicken nuggets from the giant bag I bought for my three-year-old’s dinners or the same, humble whole wheat toast with hurried swipes of peanut butter on top.
In my real life, I think you can guess what is actually true. And breakfast in our household is the worst culprit. That peanut butter toast? I eat it almost every. single. day. And if I don’t, I’m eating scrambled eggs. And that’s about as crazy as it gets when it comes to our breakfast routine.
Here’s why: Because I’m awfully sleepy in the morning. Maybe it’s just me? Maybe I’m the only one who stumbles down the stairs in the AM like Frankenstein’s bride, arms outstretched at the coffee maker willing it to make me coffee immediately? And then, no less than five minutes later, I’m slinging cereal and cutting fruit into itty-bitty pieces and trying to calm the usual morning chaos so I can please, please just have one little sip of coffee before this day starts and suddenly it’s 8 a.m. and the kitchen looks like it exploded and everyone else has eaten breakfast but me and that’s when my old reliable pal peanut butter toast makes its appearance.
It’s times like these when I am grateful for my friend Melissa, who saves the morning for me in the form of Not Your Mom’s Egg Casserole.
It’s been a while, hasn’t it? Like, oh, almost a year. How are you? I missed you. It’s good to be here with you again.
So much has happened since we last chatted. I had a baby (another girl, named Adelaide (Addy) Scout, who is the sweetest little one you will ever meet and she’s already 10 months old and almost walking and what the heck why does time move so fast). We settled into a new home. I’ve been working for General Mills as a recipe development consultant and video storyboard artist (sounds fancy, but basically I draw pictures on an iPad of pretend food and try to make it look somewhat professional) part time, while also taking care of my littles. Avery, who is almost four years old (WHAT I KNOW), has been going to preschool twice a week and growing like a weed — but really. She’s in 5T clothes and she’s not even four years old yet. Anyone want all of the 3T clothes I bought that she never wore? Ugh.
Let’s see, what else… Elliott, my dear husband, has continued working as a physician assistant at an emergency room in the Twin Cities. It’s hard work and he’s often exhausted (and I’m often exhausted from working my job and taking care of small people all day long) so our hobbies these days include crashing on the couch to watch The Alienist and Silicon Valley re-runs and dreaming big dreams for our family. ← THAT is so very vague and elusive and I apologize for that, but I have to withhold details until we’re ready. But trust, I will share everything when the timing is right.
Popping in on this Minnesota March-y Monday (which basically means it’s anywhere between 30 and 50 degrees F, a confusing time for coats vs. jackets, and sometimes it’s sunny but mostly it’s cloudy and blah and we are ALL ready for spring, amiright) with a recipe for mini pancake blini with smoked salmon and dill and creme fraiche! Sounds so fancy, doesn’t it? But it’s not. I mean, we’re essentially topping a pancake with some semi-fancy-sounding stuff that you can find at Target and then serve it for a semi-fancy brunch or dinner party that’s actually not fancy because the best kinds of brunches and dinner parties involve friends that know you well enough to have them come over in sweatpants. And you answer the door sans makeup with an off-kilter top knot. That’s true friendship, and that’s exactly how I want to serve up these mini pancake blini.
I love pancakes and waffles and muffins and all types of breakfast foods, but if I’m being totally honest, my breakfast life almost always consists of peanut or almond butter toast + fruit. Every now and then, however, I crave an omelette. Plus toast. I always need/want the carbs.
That’s one of the many reasons I love this Denver omelette crescent bake — it’s like a big-batch variation of a classic omelette made with cheese, ham, peppers and onions all on top of a soft, buttery crescent crust. It’s the best of all breakfast worlds.