Sunday, April 17, 2011

Brunching (recipes) and Juicing

Happy Weekend! 

There’s been a lot of breakfast/brunch in my life lately and in a couple hours I’ll be heading into Boston for another brunch with friends at Eastern Standard Kitchen.

Basically I’ve been craving it since my birthday!!  Can’t wait.

But first, I have a new love…


JUICE!!  Yes I jumped on the juicing bandwagon and I couldn’t be happier about it.  I’ve just read so so many amazing things about juicing and I finally was ready to try it out.

Enter this guy:


This is the Breville Juice Fountain Plus. Not the super expensive one, but I read the reviews and this seemed to be a great option and price for someone new to juicing. (plus it was on sale at Macy’s!)


It’s only been a little over a week, but I’ve found a green juice combo that I am obsessed with!


  • big handful of spinach
  • 3-4 big leaves of romaine
  • 2-3 stalks celery
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 green apple



There is something you can use to skim off the foam but I love it!  It’s like a cold green tart cappuccino ;)

Even took a juice to work one day.  I love getting so so many nutrients packed into one refreshing glass, and it does fill you up as well. 


I should probably start experimenting with other juices but for now this is my juice of choice…in fact I think I’ll make one right now!    

Yesterday, I was meeting friends for brunch at a diner in Beverly, MA. 

We weren't meeting until 10:30, but this girl was up at 7 and was starving shortly thereafter :)

Flax French Toast!


Based on my Healthy French Toast recipe I used:

  • 1.5 slices whole wheat bread
  • 1 egg
  • splash of skim milk
  • 1/4 tsp vanilla
  • cinnamon
  • 2 tsp ground flax

I added the flax right in with the egg, milk, vanilla, and cinnamon mixture.



Side of iced coffee and pineapple chunks.  So satisfying as always :)


The brunching all started last weekend… 

I was down in the Newport, RI area for a bridal shower and bachelorette party!  Fun was had by all :) 

I was rushing so much Saturday morning to get down there, that 20min into my drive I realized I forgot the good camera…I forgot ANY camera.  Which was unfortunate as I knew I’d be preparing brunch for the crew on Sunday morning at my friend’s house!

Bad blogger. Thankfully the iphone takes half-way decent pictures…

When I volunteered to help with brunch, two recipes immediately popped into my head as I knew they were fairly easy and delicious. 

The French Toast Strata and Frittata my friend made when we had brunch at her place, remember??  Those pictures are way better btw.

I got the recipes and adapted them as I went along last weekend.

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French Toast Strata:
(adapted from my friend’s cookbook, which I can’t find the author…I’ll have to get back to you on that one)

  • 3/4  of a French baguette (one of the long ones) cut into 1” cubes (day old, or toast cubes in oven at 325 for 6-8 min until slightly crisp)
    • option: use whole wheat!
  • 3oz low fat cream cheese (Neufchatel)
  • 3 eggs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 1 3/4 cups low fat milk
  • 1/3 cup real maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla
  • 2T sugar
  • 1 tsp cinnamon

Prepare the day before, or at least 4 hours ahead of time

1. Toast bread if needed, you want the bread slightly dried out.  I cut my baguette up, then toasted the cubes in the oven on a baking sheet for about 6-8 minutes

2.  Then whisk eggs and egg whites in a bowl until thoroughly blended, and add milk, syrup, and vanilla

4. Spray a 9”x13” baking dish with cooking spray (I use canola oil spray), and spread bread cubes around.

5. Cut cream cheese into small pieces and scatter amongst the bread, and then pour egg/milk mixture over bread, cover, and refrigerate overnight or at least 4 hours.

6.  Preheat oven to 350, and combine sugar and cinnamon in small bowl.  Sprinkle cinnamon sugar over over strata, and bake uncovered, for 45-50 min or until puffed, golden brown, and knife comes out clean. 

This was AWESOME!  Everyone really loved it.  I love it because it tastes like bread pudding and French toast at the same time :)

The other recipe I got from my friend was for a delicious veggie and feta filled frittata!

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I ended up not thoroughly reading the instructions first (which called for roasting the red pepper, then peeling and cutting it, and also blanching the spinach), but my version is much simpler. 

Spinach and Feta Frittata: (adapted from same cookbook)

  • 2 tsp olive oil
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped into 1/2” pieces
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 bags baby spinach
  • 5 eggs
  • 2 egg whites
  • 6 oz Feta, crumbled
  • 2T fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 tsp dried dill
  • pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400

1.  Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat, add chopped red pepper and sauté for 2-3 minutes.  Then add in spinach and continue sautéing until spinach has wilted (about 5 more min)

2.  Beat eggs and egg whites with a mixer until foamy.  Then add onion, pepper and spinach, feta, parsley, dill and black pepper.

3.  Spray a 9 x 13 baking dish with cooking spray/canola oil, and pour in egg mixture.

4.  Bake for 15-20 minutes until eggs are just set (doesn't look liquidy anymore).  Let stand for a few minutes before cutting into it.

The last dish I made was a Smitten Kitchen recipe for Spring Asparagus Pancetta Hash!  Doesn’t her photo look amazing!  Much better than mine…

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I followed her recipe exactly, except for her serving ideas…but I agree that this would be amazing with a fried egg on top and goat cheese!!

The pan I was using wasn’t cooperating though, so all the good browned potato just stuck to the pan instead of the potato, but this was an AWESOME recipe!!

Such a great alternative to your standard home fries. 

We also had fruit, bacon, cut up pastries from a bakery down the road, and of course coffee.

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I really love breakfast foods. 

Enjoy the rest of your weekend!  I'm most likely taking tomorrow off!

After brunch today I need to get in my 9-mile run!  I still can’t believe I’m running 8, 9…10 miles these days!!  Craziness, but loving it!


  1. hooray for brunch! One of my most favorite meals!! All of your recipes look great. But I'm especially intrigued by the French Toast Strata! I need to try that sometime soon. Good luck with the run

  2. I love brunch too! In fact, Bret is taking me to Foundry on Elm for brunch today to celebrate me doing my first 5K!

  3. Your juice looks so refreshing! I have always wanted to buy a juicer - maybe I will soon :)

  4. What an awesome brunch. I'm trying to get back into my green smoothie routine now that the weather is warming up. I'm going for a run today too!!!

  5. mmm, what a fabulous brunch!! and i'm jealous of your juicer, i've been wanting to give it a try :)

  6. That french toast strata looks AMAZING. I love brunch spreads.

  7. I just bought a juicer too!! I'm obsessed with juicing carrots, apples, lemon, spinach and ginger!! But I want to try your green juice blend.

    Yum yum!

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