Spiderweb Eggs

Friday, October 30, 2009

When I first saw this recipe I was skeptical that this simple method would actually work. It seemed too good to be true that just cooking and cracking eggs in blueberry water would create a spiderweb effect. In fact, I got out black food coloring the first time I tried it, thinking to add it to the water when Martha's technique didn't work out as promised. However, the eggs came out great. To ensure you also have success, I have provided a few tips I learned in my process: Blueberry juice stains...a lot. So you should not let your kids help with this recipe. Add gentle cracks all around the egg (about three should do it) so if one crack doesn't have that amazing spiderweb look, when you turn the egg over, another crack will!

Serves: 12 eggs
Start-to-Finish: 2 hours
Recipe By: Martha Stewart


1 dozen large eggs
8 cups water
2 cups frozen blueberries
sea salt and pepper, for serving


1. Place eggs in single layer in a large saucepan, and cover with cold water and blueberries.
2. Bring to a boil.
3. Boil for 1 minutes; remove pan from heat.
4. Cover; let stand for 15 minutes.
5. Using a slotted spoon, remove eggs and place on several layers of paper towels.
6. Lightly crack shell on one side with the handle of a whisk or wooden spoon.
7. Transfer egg to medium bowl.
8. Repeat with remaining eggs and then pour all of the cooking liquid on top of the cracked eggs.
9. Place bowl in the refrigerator and let cool completely.
10. Carefully peel shells from eggs.

Halloween-Themed Cereals

Friday, October 23, 2009

The most popular breakfast food nowadays is cereal. So it would be silly for me to post Halloween breakfasts without Halloween cereal. General Mills makes the most recognizable Halloween cereals: Boo Berry, Count Chocula, and Franken Berry. They are all the same cereal with different flavors; blueberry, chocolate, and strawberry. They aren't necessarily healthy or cost effective if you have a large family (they come in small boxes), but they are a fun way to get into the Halloween spirit. It may surprise some people to learn there are other Halloween cereals out there, but they are not as popular and not all stores carry them. General Mills monopolized the Halloween Cereal market for many years because they introduced their cereals in the 70's. Other contenders have just jumped on the band wagon in the last five years. Kellogg's has a line called "The Haunted Manor" which spins Fruit Loops, Apple Jacks, and Cocoa Krispies into spooky cereals with marshmallow ghost. Quaker has come out with Halloween Crunch (from Cap'n Crunch) that turns your milk green and is shaped like ghosts. I am sure many new varieties of Halloween cereals will start making appearances as other big names in the cereal industry try to stay competitive. So check out the cereal aisle in your local grocery store to see if you can find some fun Halloween cereals to start off your morning with an easy, spooky breakfast.

Witches' Brew

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Mike, Van, and I taste-tested several different recipes for green juice and after all was said and done we couldn't agree on a favorite. So I have posted my favorite and Mike's favorite. But regardless of which one you choose, both are full of healthy vitamins and nutrients that can leave you with the confidence of knowing you started the day off right with a great breakfast. Plus, it is an easy way to get you kids to eat their greens! An important tip for both of these recipes: blend up your ingredients VERY well. They need to be super pureed so you aren't drinking a chunk of green stuff.

This recipe is Van and my favorite. If my 2-year-old will drink it, I can assure you, you can't taste the vegetables at all. I liked this recipe because spinach leaves come pre-washed and cut so there is no additional prep work needed. The banana adds a thickness to the drink that makes it seem more shake-like. I used orange yogurt for additional flavor which was delicious. Once you get the basics of the recipe you can easily substitute the fruits and juices for things you have on hand.

Serves: 2
Start-to-Finish: 10 minutes
Recipe By: Amber Brunson


1 banana, chopped
1 cup pineapple juice
1 (6-oz) container yogurt (any fun fruity flavor will be great but you can also add plain yogurt)
1/2 apple, cored, peeled, and chopped
1 1/2 cups fresh spinach leaves


1. Put spinach and pineapple juice in blender and blend until smooth. (The juice helps the spinach move though the blades.)
2. Place the banana, yogurt, and apple into blender.
3. Cover, and blend until smooth, stopping frequently to push down anything stuck to the sides.
4. Pour into glasses and serve.

This recipe is Mike's favorite. The coconut-pineapple combination gave the juice a pina colada flare. Because the pineapple is pre-cut and frozen you don't have to do any chopping for this recipe and, after blending the pineapple, the drink has a slushy feel. For those of you wondering what kale is, imagine this: if parsley and green lettuce got married and had a kid it would be Kale. It has a very light flavor that is easily covered but leaves the drink with a "wheat grass" taste that makes is feel healthy and refreshing.

Serves: 2
Start-to-Finish: 10 minutes
Recipe By: Amber Brunson


2 cups fresh kale
1 cup frozen unsweetened pineapple chunks (if you don't blend well this will be chunky)
1-1/2 cups pineapple-coconut juice
1 (6-oz) container pina colada flavored yogurt


1. Put kale and pineapple juice in blender and blend until smooth. (The juice helps the kale move though the blades.)
2. Place the pineapple and yogurt into blender.
3. Cover, and blend until smooth, stopping frequently to push down anything stuck to the sides.
4. Pour into glasses and serve.


Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I fell in love with this little Hoot-Owl face the minute I saw it. It is just too cute. The hashbrown eyebrows are my favorite part, and delicious too. This recipe is very simple and doesn't require any complicated cooking. It is mostly just assembling the plate before serving. This is a great recipe for cooking with your kids. When hard boiling eggs use eggs that have been in your fridge for a little while, not ones you bought from the grocery store that day. They will peel easier but they are more prone to cracking while cooking so don't jostle your pot too much.

Serves: 4
Start-to-Finish: 45 minutes (30 minutes are for preparing your eggs. However, if you boil your eggs the night before and let them cool in the refrigerator overnight this recipe takes no time at all in the morning.)
Recipe By: Amber Brunson


4 eggs
4 slices of bread
1 orange, sliced
1 tsp salt
2 small red potatoes, shredded (or a bag of frozen hashbrowns)
8 blueberries (if you don't have blueberries handy you can also swirl a bit of ketchup on your eggs to make the eyes)


1. Put eggs in a pot and fill with cold water until just covering eggs.
2. Add a tsp of salt to the water and cover with a lid. (The salt makes it easier to peel the eggs later on.)
3. Put the pot of water on the stove to boil.
4. When the water hits boiling turn off the heat but leave the pot on the warm burner for 15 minutes.
5. Remove pot from stove and drain water.
6. Allow eggs to cool completely before peeling.
7. Peel hardboiled eggs and slice in half. (This step is actually harder than it sounds so cut slowly with a very sharp knife.)
8. While eggs are cooling, clean and peel potatoes.
9. Shred potatoes using a cheese grater.
10. In a pan, melt 1 teaspoon butter
11. Arrange hashbrowns into a "V" shape and fry until crispy and gold brown.
12. Chop orange into wedges.
13. Toast slices of bread.
14. Cut toast in half diagonally.
15. Spread butter and jam on toast.
16. Arrange plate with hashbrown eyebrows, hard-boiled egg eyes, blueberry eyeballs, an orange slice beak, and toast wings.

Frankenstien's Monster Burritos

Monday, October 12, 2009

My love of breakfast burritos started when I was a little girl. My first memory of them is my dad cooking eggs, bacon, and tortilla shells on a propane stove whenever we went camping. The next is at the Harry's house, who would make breakfast for all the seminary students before school started. There was always a huge stack of warm, steamy tortilla shells and a gigantic pan of eggs and cheese on breakfast burrito day. Then, after I was married, Mike and I started a tradition of grabbing a Beto's breakfast burrito at the start of our long drive between Utah and California when we went to visit family. When we lived in Sugar Land, we would often wake up early to get in line for a breakfast burrito from Soliz Casa de Tacos, my favorite is "The Darlene". I wanted to continue this great history with something special for Halloween, obviously the Frankenstein's Monster Burritos were perfect!

Serves: 4 (half a burrito per serving)
Start-to-finish: 30 minutes
Recipe By: Amber Brunson


2 green tortillas shells
12 slices bacon
6 eggs
1/4 cup milk
salt and pepper, to taste
2 small potatoes, shredded (to save time you can substitute frozen hashbrowns)
1 TBSP vegetable oil
1/3 cup cheddar cheese, grated

Face decorations:
sour cream
black food pen (or black food coloring and a toothpick)
orange pepper slices


1. In a skillet, cook bacon until crispy and drain on paper towels.
2. Drain the pan of most of the bacon grease. (If you leave some grits it will add a nice, smoky flavor to your eggs later on.)
3. In bowl, whip together eggs and milk.
4. Add salt and pepper to the scrambled eggs mixture.
5. In a skillet, cook scrambled eggs until cooked through; but still moist.
6. Meanwhile, grate potatoes.
7. In another fry pan, heat oil.
8. Once oil is heated, spread potatoes out in a thin layer across the bottom of the pan.
9. Fry potatoes until browned, flipping only once.
10. Wrap tortilla shells in a paper towel and microwave for 15 seconds, or until warm and steamy.
11. To assemble burrito: layer tortilla shells with eggs, hashbrowns, and cheese.
12. Add bacon (all but 1 piece, which will be neck bolts) so that it slightly hangs over the end of the top and bottom of the tortilla shell (this will become Frankenstein's Monster's hair).
13. Roll up tortilla shell into a burrito and cut in half down the middle
14. Decorate Frankenstein's Monster's face using ketchup, sour cream, orange pepper slices, black food pen, and bacon for the neck bolt.

You can personalize this recipe by adding your favorite breakfast items inside the burrito. Everything from tatter tots and cubed ham to green pepper slices and salsa. My favorite breakfast burrito combination is eggs, potatoes, refried beans, cheddar cheese, bacon, and salsa.

Full Moon Bagel

Sunday, October 11, 2009

A little food coloring goes a long way in this breakfast dish; turning ordinary cream cheese into an October moon. Getting the witch silhouette is achieved by piping blackberry jelly. This can take some practice and a steady hand. If you want it to go a bit faster try piping a bat or black cat. (Something with less detail, but will still give you the same full moon effect.) I picked up a squeeze bottle from Wal-Mart for $1.00 that worked wonderfully for piping the jelly.

Serves: 4
Start to Finish: 20 minutes
Recipe By: Amber Brunson


4 bagels, split (I thought cinnamon raisin bagels went great with the jelly, but any flavor is fine. Look for bagels with smaller holes in the center to make them easier to coat with cream cheese)
4 oz. cream cheese
Blackberry jelly (Needs to be something darker in color and seedless)
Yellow food coloring


1. Toast bagels.
2. Mix yellow food coloring into cream cheese until evenly incorporated. (A little goes a long way with food coloring so experiment with one drop at a time.)
3. Spread yellow cream cheese onto toasted bagel. (You don't have to be too particular about getting smooth, even coverage because your jelly piping will cover up most imperfections.)
4. Using a knife or toothpick draw out a rough sketch of your design into the cream cheese.
5. Put jelly into a piping bottle.
6. Using piping bottle, fill in your design sketched on the cream cheese with jelly.
7. Serve with sliced fruit. Apples have a star effect in the center when you slice them crossways which goes well with the full moon theme.

Pumpkin-Pumpkin Pancakes

Thursday, October 8, 2009

These pancakes are not only shaped like pumpkins but the batter is also made with pumpkin puree. If you aren't feeling adventurous at 7:00am, or are short on time, you can use Bisquick mix and add orange food coloring to the main batter to compensate for the lack of orange coloring brought in by the pumpkin puree. The allspice and ground cinnamon enhance the mild pumpkin flavor and are great with melted butter and warm maple syrup. All in all, a festive breakfast that will put you in the mood for Fall.

Start-to-Finish: 40 minutes
Recipe By: Idea from My Sister's Cucina. Recipe from Ruth from Allrecipes.com


2 cups flour
3 TBSP brown sugar
2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp ground allspice
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cups milk
1 cup pumpkin puree (pumpkin pie filling and pumpkin puree are not the same. Pumpkin puree can be found in the baking section or canned vegetable section of most grocery stores)
1 egg
2 TBSP vegetable oil
2 TBSP vinegar
2 drops green food coloring


1. In a bowl, blend together the milk, pumpkin, egg, oil and vinegar. (Pumpkin puree is fibrous, so you need to blend it very well to make the pancakes smooth. I used an immersion blender for this but it was mostly because I was itching for a way to use it for the first time. You could also use a hand mixer.)
2. In a separate bowl, combine the flour, brown sugar, baking powder, baking soda, allspice, cinnamon, ginger, and salt.
3. Stir both mixtures together just enough to combine.
4. Scoop out 1 cup of batter into a separate bowl.
5. To this 1 cup, add 2 drops of green food coloring. (This batter will become your pumpkin stems.)
6. Heat a lightly oiled griddle over medium high heat.
7. Pour the batter onto the griddle, using approximately 1/4 cup for each pancake. (The batter makes 'puffy' pancakes so by only using 1/4 cup and spreading it out in the pan with a spoon it will make the pancakes flatter.)
8. Add a stem to your pumpkin pancakes using the green colored batter.
9. Brown on both sides and serve hot.

Spooky Face Breakfast

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

This spooky face is an awesome and complete breakfast. In fact, if you stack everything up on the english muffin and close it into a sandwich it is a deluxe Egg McMuffin Sandwich. McDonald's eat your heart out. I made a smiling face because my kids are still young and I don't want them to be scared of Halloween but for your big kids you can make the face a little more gruesome by adding bloodshot lines in your egg eyes with ketchup and a grimacing mouth.

Serves: 4
Start to Finish: 30 minutes
Recipe By: Amber Brunson


4 eggs
4 english muffins, split
12 slices bacon
4 slices ham
1 green bell pepper
4 slices cheddar cheese
4 tsp butter
salt and pepper


1. Cook bacon in a large skillet until crispy.
2. While bacon is cooking, toast your split english muffins until golden brown.
3. When bacon is crispy, set aside and keep warm.
4. Drain bacon fat from pan.
5. In the same skillet, add 1 tsp butter.
6. When butter is melted add egg to the pan (cook one egg at a time; 1 tsp butter for each) careful not to break the yoke when adding the eggs to the pan.
7. Cook eggs sunny-side up. (I am not great at cooking eggs sunny-side up, it always takes me 3 tries before I get the hang of it. So don't get discouraged if your yolks don't come out perfect the first time.)
8. As eggs finish cooking, transfer them to your toasted english muffins.
9. Slice bell pepper to make the "hair" for your spooky face.
10. Using a cookie cutter or sharp knife, cut ham into round shapes.
11. Assemble your plate with salt and pepper garnishing the egg, ketchup garnishing the ham, and a cheese slice for the nose.