Tag Archives: breakfast

Dirty Chai Pancakes with Spiced Caramel Sauce

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My friends, Wright Time for a Schnack has officially reunited! We have meandered our way back to snowy little Rhode Island from our respective corners of the world, and this morning happily cooked in the same kitchen for the first time in over four and a half months. We might be a little more street-smart, city-slick, and worldly, but we are still delighted to return to our now-quaint hometown and the brilliant friends and family who inhabit it.

On this chilly winter morning, both of us recovering from colds, Caty and I concocted a delightful warm breakfast of dirty chai (chai with espresso, for those not in the know) pancakes with a sweet caramel sauce to top it off. It was enormously satisfying. One of the many lovely things about pancakes is that they are extremely adaptable–one can put any number of ingredients in pancakes and they transform to suit any number of occasions. In this instance, our occasion was our blogging reunion, and the newly-born year of 2013. (If you don’t have any occasions to celebrate with food, I encourage you make one up on the spot.)

I would recommend for those without huge sweet teeth (and believe me, I myself like my sugar) to cut back on the amount of the caramel sauce, because between the two of us Caty and I probably ate no more than half of what we had made–the sauce-to-pancakes ratio was quite high.

These were a lovely treat, but the best part was enjoying each other’s blogging company after so long apart! There’s only one person who understands my need to dance crazily in the kitchen, and that is one Caty Schnack.

Happy New Year, everybody!

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Dirty Chai Pancakes with Spiced Caramel Sauce
Adapted fromĀ Cooking for Seven

For the spiced caramel sauce
1 cup sugar
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into 6 pieces
1/2 cup heavy cream at room temperature
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
A pinch of each cloves, nutmeg, cardamom and ginger

For the pancakes
1 1/3 cup milk
2 teaspoons white vinegar
3/4 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup white flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
Pinch of sea salt
1 tablespoon finely ground espresso (we used Cafe Bustelo espresso-style coffee)
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon cardamom
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
Pinch of cloves
2 tablespoons maple syrup
1 tablespoon melted butter
1 teaspoon vanilla extract

  1. For the caramel sauce: Place sugar in a heavy saucepan over medium heat. Stir vigorously until completely melted, then add butter one piece at a time. Slowly pour in heavy cream while continuing to whisk. Remove from heat and add salt and spices. Set aside.
  2. Combine the milk and vinegar in a measuring cup and set aside to curdle for five minutes.
  3. Sift together the dry pancake ingredients. Add the curdled milk, maple syrup and vanilla and stir until just combined. The batter might be liquidy; let it sit for a couple minutes and it will thicken up.
  4. Heat a heavy skillet and coat with non-stick cooking spray or butter. Drop batter onto skillet using a 1/3 cup measure and cook until bubbles appear on the sides of the pancake, 1-2 minutes. Flip and cook for another 1-2 minutes until cooked on both sides.
  5. Serve with caramel sauce and enjoy!

Banana Crumb Muffins

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Banana crumb muffins.. It’s like banana bread hopped into a muffin pan and covered itself in brown sugary goodness.

Yes, that’s exactly what banana crumb muffins are like. On Monday, Georgia and I decided to beat the Monday blues by whipping up a batch of her favorite muffins. Originally, she had planned on making them Monday morning before school. We all knew how that would turn out, so instead we made them in the afternoon.

Though, the recipe is pretty easy and takes almost no time, so you could theoretically make them in the morning before school/work/whatever. Or, you could just sleep, which is also cool.

I’m not even going to tell you how many of these babies we ate. They are THAT good. I highly recommend you make them right now. Or tomorrow morning, if you’re crazy like that. And don’t forget the crumb topping. It’s necessary.

Banana Crumb Muffins
From allrecipes.com

1 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 very ripe bananas, mashed
3/4 cup sugar
1 egg, beaten lightly
1/3 cup butter, melted
1/3 cup packed brown sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/8-1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1 tablespoon butter

  1. Preheat oven to 375. Lightly grease or line 12 muffin cups.
  2. In a large bowl, mix 1 1/2 cups flour, baking soda, baking powder and salt. In a smaller bowl, beat together bananas, sugar, egg and melted butter. Stir the banana mixture into the flour mixture just until the batter is moistened.
  3. In a small bowl, mix together brown sugar, 2 tablespoons flour and cinnamon. Cut in butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Sprinkle the topping over muffins.
  4. Bake for 18-20 minutes or until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean. Cool on a wire rack before serving.

Chocolate and Ginger Scones

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Happy Post-Exams, everyone! Now that the first semester is over, we can actually post on the blog again! Rejoice!

On this lovely, warm January Saturday, Caty and I decided to incorporate both ginger and chocolate into a batch of sweet milk scones from The Best Recipe. Unfortunately, there was a small –shall we say– miscommunication regarding baking soda in the first batch, so we were forced to whip up a few more after discovering our light and fluffy scones were not, as promised, light and fluffy, but instead lay flat and dense on the cooking sheet like flaky, unappetizing little hockey pucks. Yum.

No matter. The correct recipe brought us some simply delicious scones, which are well worth making. But I suggest learning from our mistakes. Add baking soda the first time. It’ll save you a bit of frustration.

The zingy ginger combined with slivers of chocolate dot these scones, adding an interesting flavor perfect for a winter brunch. Enjoy.

Chocolate and Ginger Scones
Adapted from The Best Recipe

2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon cream of tartar
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
1-2 tablespoons sugar (optional)
4 tablespoons cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
1/2 cup chopped crystallized ginger
3 ounces bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup whole milk

  1. Preheat oven to 450 and position a rack in the middle of the oven
  2. Whisk flour, cream of tartar, baking soda, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Add ginger and chocolate. With fingertips or a pastry cutter, cut butter into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse meal.
  3. Make a well in the center and pour in milk. Working quickly, blend ingredients together with a rubber spatula into a soft, slightly wet dough. Turn dough onto a well-floured surface.
  4. Roll the dough to 1/2 inch thick. Use a lightly greased and floured 3-inch biscuit cutter (alternatively, you can use the rim of a glass) to shape the dough into small rounds.
  5. Place the dough rounds 1 1/2 inches apart on a greased or parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake until lightly browned, about 10 to 12 minutes and serve immediately.

Breakfast

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Yesterday we attempted to impress you all with s’mores cookies. Apparently, adding graham cracker crumbs, cut-up marshmallow, and chocolate chips to a chocolate cookie will not look pretty nor will it taste exactly like s’mores. Disappointing, but we really enjoyed eating the batter and snacking on marshmallows. Oh well, hopefully we’ll perfect a s’mores-inspired dessert sometime soon!

Instead of a dessert recipe, I’ll share something a lot healthier, and, arguably, just as delicious.

It’s called whole-grain toast with almond butter and nectarine, and I’ve been eating it for breakfast for a couple days now.

Wait–more like two weeks. But that’s only because it’s super good.

The recipe (if you could even call it a recipe) is easy: toast good whole-grain bread, spread some almond butter on it (the raw almond butter is best), top with ripe nectarine (or peach) slices, and drizzle with honey.

More Wright & Schnack food creations coming soon, I promise!

Photoshoots for breakfast