One of the things that defined the Christmas season for me (and perhaps our entire household) almost all through elementary and high school, was our annual performance of The Nutcracker. My twin and I went to the same ballet school and every year around Thanksgiving, parts would be assigned to excited little dancers, rehearsals for the ballet would start, and Tchaikovsky’s beautiful score would start playing through our house. Honestly, I don’t think I could ever get sick of that music, but I could see why our two younger brothers and parents would groan when “Nutcracker season” started for T and I.
The show really became a family affair — my parents shuttled us to and from rehearsals, my mum helped us behind the scenes, and my dad even got on stage for a few years as one of the “guest fathers” during the opening scene. I wasn’t a particularly impressive ballerina –T was a much better dancer (he’s danced professionally, so ooobviously he’s the better dancer in this twin duo) and had prominent solo parts; I was happy enough to get my bits on stage and be part of the show. Although one year, when they couldn’t find a man to play the comedic role of “Mother Ginger” as they usually did, guess who ended up as the lady who was supposed to be in drag? This is what happens to tall, not very serious ballerinas…it’s a good thing I can laugh at myself.
It’s been several years since our Nutcracker days, but after going through countless rehearsals and performances, I’d bet that both T and I could remember the steps from the Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy.
These aren’t sugared plums in the traditional sense; they’re coated in maple syrup and tossed in brown sugar, so I think they earn the name (plus it’s oh-so-festive!). The recipe is adapted from this Classic Baked French Toast that was part of our Mother’s Day brunch back in May. Any type of baked French toast seems like a pretty lovely idea for an easy holiday morning treat; throw it together the night before and pop it in the oven in the morning. I hope you enjoy it and merry Christmas eve!
Classic Baked French Toast from Mother’s Day
Maple Sugar Plum Baked French Toast
Weekday breakfasts for me are usually just something fast and simple, but weekend breakfasts can be special. Without work or school to rush off to, it’s so nice to sit and really enjoy your first meal of the day! As far as “special” breakfasts go, I’m a pretty big fan of french toast; it’s easy, delicious and you can add almost anything to it. Well, this baked french toast takes even less prep time but is still lovely enough to serve for an occasion.
You can put it all together and leave it in the fridge overnight, then all you have to do in the morning is pop it in the oven! I think everyone can handle that.Ottawa is getting it’s second weekend of beautiful weather in a row, and I can’t get enough of the sunshine (although my lobster red shoulders might disagree). This long weekend is the perfect time for a languid breakfast in the sun — hope you can take advantage of it!
This baked French toast was part of our Mother’s Day brunch… it was a delicious morning and I have so much love for my wonderful Mum & Nana!
Breakfast is the most important meal of the day…start baking!
Pretty, but the snow probably isn't good for the tulips!
When my (amazing) Auntie C visited over Christmas, she brought with her a big bag of homemade granola. We meant to save it for breakfast, but someone opened the bag to start munching and before we knew it the whole thing was gone! I’d been meaning to make her recipe since then, and it did not disappoint.
After a weekend with friends in rainy Montreal, I woke up to a slushy wonderland in Ottawa this morning.
Cozy in my PJs, this granola was beyond perfect with some Greek yogurt and my morning coffee.
Montréal, je t'aime.
Having never made my own granola before I was happy with how easy it was! I love the “artisan” organic type of granola you can get at the store, but this is so much cheaper and you can use whatever ingredients you like and have on hand.
It tastes great with fruit and yogurt or milk, on its own as a healthy snack and if you packaged it nicely it would even make a nice treat for someone else (a friend who skips breakfast?!). There’s a lot to like about this easy and delicious granola. Auntie C’s recipe
Have you tried quinoa for breakfast? For all the times I’ve had quinoa I don’t think I had it for breakfast until yesterday morning. After a late night out, I was craving healthy food. I’m going to call this Quinoa Apple Pie Parfait, but it’s super-duper healthy. Try quinoa to start off your day!
They say that breakfast is the most important meal of the day, but if the meal isn’t skipped altogether we tend to just grab something we can eat on the run. I’m not saying that we need to cook a feast every morning, but isn’t it nice to actually sit down and enjoy the first meal of the day? These pancakes are a cinch to whip up in the morning,they’re healthier than your average pancake, and if you make extra just freeze them for later…easy! My Mum’s Best Buttermilk Pancakes
Make French toast, of course! With a loaf or hardened baguette on my hands and some left over challah, I got to work this morning! Just to clarify, I mean stale as in the bread is a little dry and not super for a sandwich, not stale as in there is mould on your bread…
If you google “French toast recipe” you will find a seemingly endless supply of recipes for the classic breakfast, some traditional and some with their own twist. There are French toast soufflés, baked French toast, some with Grand Marnier, French toast BLTs…
They all sound delicious, but I just went for an easy brekkie and made Pomegranate Orange French Toast with Orange Sauce and Pecans & Classic French Toast with Raspberries, Bananas and Maple Syrup. A super tasty way to start of the day! What are your favourite French toast combinations?? See recipes here!