Sun, Feb. 23

Coming from a kitchen near you

With spring in the air and Easter Sunday coming up, it’s a great time to treat your family and friends to a delicious breakfast or brunch. It’s easy to do at home with these time-saving recipes that can be prepared the day or night before.

The brunch casseroles can be refrigerated overnight and cooked in the morning to serve fresh and hot. Serve your favorite homemade or purchased breads, bagels, and coffeecakes. Add potatoes, fruit, coffee, juices and champagne, as desired. If you’re really ambitious, make pancakes or waffles just before serving time and top with syrup or fruit preserves.

You can count on these dishes any time you have overnight guests as well as a special occasion. Everyone will be happy and well-fed.

Christmas Morning Breakfast

Kimberly Collier of Denver recently compiled her own recipes into a cookbook and her mother, Karen Hopkins of Cottonwood, shared this with us. Kimberly says they open gifts while this is baking.

1 pound sausage

6 slices of bread

6 eggs, beaten

2 cups milk

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon dry mustard

1 cup mild cheddar cheese, grated

1 can cream of mushroom soup

1/2 cup milk

Brown and drain sausage. Butter bread and place buttered side down in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish. Add sausage.

Mix eggs, milk, salt and dry mustard. Pour mixture over sausage and bread. Sprinkle cheese on top. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

In the morning, mix cream of mushroom soup with milk and pour over top of casserole. Bake at 350 degrees for 1 hour.

Spicy Potato Breakfast Casserole

This recipe includes hash-browned potatoes and offers many options to suit your taste. It can be made ahead too.

2 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted

2 to 4 cups hash browns, defrosted

1/2 to 1 pound regular or hot bulk pork sausage (or Italian or Chorizo), cooked, drained and crumbled

1 to 2 cups shredded cheese (Monterey Jack, cheddar or mozzarella)

Optional: Few dashes hot-pepper sauce, 1/3 cup chopped red or green pepper, 1/3 cup chopped onions, 4-ounce can drained green chilies, 1 cup sautéed sliced mushrooms, or 1/4 cup sliced black olives.

6 eggs, beaten

1/2 cup milk

Salt and pepper to taste

Brush 1-1/2 quart casserole dish with melted butter. Add potatoes, sausage, cheese and any of the optional ingredients desired.

Mix eggs, milk and seasonings and pour over other ingredients. Bake at 350 degrees for 30 to 45 minutes (longer if stored in refrigerator), or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Makes six servings.

Ham and Cheese Oven Omelet

Sue Collinsworth, Cottonwood


8 eggs

1 cup milk

1/2 teaspoon seasoned salt (recipe below)

1 package (3-ounce) smoked, thin-sliced ham, torn small (or deli ham)

1 cup shredded cheddar, Swiss or mozzarella cheese

3 tablespoons onion, finely chopped

Seasoned Salt:

1/2 cup salt

1 tablespoon each: celery salt, garlic salt, paprika

1 teaspoon each: dry mustard, onion powder, pepper

Blend all ingredients together very well. Makes large amount of seasoning to store for future use in this recipe.

Beat eggs, milk and seasoned salt. Stir in remaining ingredients. Pour into greased dish (12 x 7-1/2 x 2-inches) or square (8 x 8 x 2-inches). Serves 4.

Keep in refrigerator for up to 24 hours and bake at 325 degrees for 45 to 50 minutes, or until set and golden brown.

To double recipe, bake in 13- x 9- x 2-inch pan. Serves 6 to 8.

Dolly’s Own Bacon and Egg Casserole

Lee Patterson of Cottonwood says, “This is delicious and very forgiving. It’s sometimes hard to pin point the exact time you’ll be serving this, so if you keep it warm, it will hold a while. I’ve doubled and tripled it when serving a very large group.” She got it from the owner of the Old Charm Bed and Breakfast in California in 1984 and has been serving it ever since.

Prepare the night before:

3/4 to 1 pound bacon, chopped

6 eggs, beaten

2 cups milk

3/4 cup cheddar cheese, shredded

1/2 cup mozzarella cheese, shredded

3 slices bread, cubed (Lee uses thick Texas bread)

1/4 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon dry mustard

Fry bacon until crisp and drain. Place bread cubes and bacon in the bottom of a greased 13 x 9-inch baking pan. To the beaten eggs, add milk, cheese, salt and mustard. Pour over bread and bacon.

Refrigerate for several hours or overnight. In the morning, bake at 350 degrees for 45 minutes.

Perfect Blueberry Muffins

Ruth Kanowsky, Cottonwood


1/4 cup unsalted butter

3/4 cup sugar

1-1/2 teaspoons grated lemon zest

1 large egg

1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla

1-1/4 cups blueberries, rinsed and dried

1 cup all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup milk


3/4 teaspoon sugar

1/8 teaspoon grated nutmeg

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Line 8 muffin cups with paper liners and lightly spray with non-stick cooking spray.

Place butter, sugar and lemon zest in large mixing bowl and beat on medium speed until light and fluffy, about 5 minutes. Beat in egg and vanilla. Mash 1/4 cup berries in small bowl and beat it into butter mixture.

Whisk together flour, baking powder and salt in small bowl. Add half the flour mixture with half the milk and, using rubber spatula, fold it into butter mixture. Repeat with remaining flour and milk, folding in just until flour disappears. Fold in remaining 1 cup blueberries. Spoon batter into muffin cups, almost to the top.

To prepare topping, stir together sugar and nutmeg in small bowl. Place mixture in small strainer and using spoon to help press it through, dust mixture on top of each muffin.

Pour a little water into any empty muffin cups to prevent uneven baking. Bake at 375 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes, or until done.

Bran Muffins

This recipe is great because you prepare the batter when you have time and then bake them whenever you want fresh muffins.

1 quart buttermilk

4 eggs, beaten

1 cup oil

15 ounces Raisin Bran cereal — comes in 20 oz. box — use approximately 3/4 box

5 cups flour

5 teaspoons soda

2 teaspoons salt

2 cups sugar

Mix all ingredients together well.

Add more raisins, if desired. Store in covered container in refrigerator for two weeks, maybe a little longer.

Use as needed.

Bake in greased or paper-lined muffin cups at 400 degrees for 15 to 20 minutes.

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