Breakfast

Vanilla and Spice Pancakes

Have you ever had the cheap, fake vanilla extract that's water with food coloring, alcohol, and sugar? The J.R Watkins' brand is the exact opposite of that. 

I was pretty thrilled when I was sent pure vanilla extract and baking vanilla, which has even more extract flavor, to test out. I decided to bring luxury into something pretty common - lobster mac and cheese anyone? - in order to really see this ingredient shine.

Vanilla and Spice Pancakes

Crispy Hash Browns

I'll cut to the chase. Grate your potatoes if you want crispy hash browns that cook all the way through. That's the secret. 

Just like the biscuits we've made together that uses grated butter, this simple recipe - is it even a recipe if there are only 3 ingredients? - bows down to the grater that's usually an overlooked tool in the big ol' kitchen drawer. 

I will say the best thing about these hash browns is the fact that it takes less time to make than cooking store-bought frozen potatoes. I've stood in front of the stove for too long, too many times, before I learned my lesson that frozen potatoes never get crispy. NEVER. At least for me anyways.

Crispy Hash Browns

French Toast with Roasted Apples

You bet your bottom dollar that we're about to talk about some luxurious french toast, but first, we're going to talk about the food warmer that inspired this recipe. 

I have an obsession with feeding people. To the point that I don't need anyone around to cook enough for 10 (which I responsibly save as leftovers, no food waste here). That's why I was incredibly happy to get the Bella food warmer at Seattle Goodwill. My momma-in-law, who has a knack for finding a good deal, was the one that picked this one out, knowing that I was looking for a way to keep food warm at gatherings. It's completely brand new. All I had to do was give it a good wash and it was ready to go. That's the beauty of Goodwill: you really never know what people are going to donate, which makes their items that they're no longer using into your little treasures. 

French Toast with Roasted Apples

Butter Basted Eggs, Salmon, and Asparagus

Saint Valentine might not have a hold on me, but February still has a cozy place in my heart. You see, it's the month that has the anniversary of when I first joined this crazy world. And for the whole month, I'm just more aware. So much so that I like to fill my days, especially my meals, with luxury whenever possible. 

So we gonna get fancy. Putting a saucy yolk on anything is a big thumbs up for me, but I'm taking it even further. Because butter. Yep. We're basting the eggs with velvet, and making sure the bed the eggs lay on is worthy.

Butter Basted Eggs, Salmon, and Asparagus

Baked Veggie Frittata

I had no idea what a frittata was until long after I had been making frittatas. My silly assumption was that it was something crunchier like croutons with a name like that. Then I found out that this was the title for the egg dish that I would lazily throw together on a weekend. It might sound fancy, but really it's the same concept of a casserole or a stew: just use whatever ingredients you have hanging around in your kitchen. 

So this recipe is no exception. My main tip is to just cook the veggies before going into the oven in two stages. First batch with veggies that take more time, then add the veggies that take less time later.  Ta da.

Baked Veggie Frittata