Sunday, December 8, 2013

Cheap and Easy

It has been snowing since just before dawn today.  The Drama Queen went out the back door and set a land speed record coming back in.

(And then, cat-like, proceeded to the front door expecting the weather in the front yard to be nicer).

I don't usually cook breakfast, as the spousal unit is a cold-cereal man, but this morning I hauled out my new electric skillet and made French toast. Also known as pain perdu and (to our cousins across the pond in both directions) as Poor Knights of Windsor, it's the ultimate in cheap and filling food.  If eggs are out of season and therefore expensive, as they used to be before we all got used to a year-round supply of eggs, the frugal housekeeper just used a bit more milk (probably condensed, in those days before a year-round supply of milk).

The eggier the better, says I.  My copy of Better Home and Garden's Easy Skillet Meals has a recipe that calls for French bread, powdered sugar and grated lemon peel, but this slightly simpler one kept us happy. It literally melted in our mouths.

FRENCH TOAST.  Preheat the skillet to 300°.  Beat three eggs into one cup of whole milk.  Add 2 T. sugar, a pinch of salt, and a teaspoon of vanilla.  Take slices of bread (Sunbeam's Texas Toast works a treat) and dip them briefly in the batter.  I only do each side to the count of three, and if you're using flimsy store-bought bread, don't soak it any longer, no matter what the King Arthur Flour people say.  It'll fall apart.

Cook for two and a half minutes on each side.  A little longer won't hurt it.   10 slices fed the two of us and I blush to tell you which percentage I consumed. Serve with syrup, cinnamon sugar, or the following fruit compote (also from Easy Skillet Meals).

PINEAPPLE-GLAZED BANANAS.  Cut up 2 cups fresh pineapple over a bowl, catching juice.  Add water to juice, if necessary, to make 1/2 cup (screw it, used canned).  In skillet combine pineapple with juice, 1/3 cup brown sugar, 2 tablespoons honey, and 1 tablespoon butter (electric skillet 350°).  Cook and stir 2 minutes.  Reduce heat.  Peel and halve 5 bananas lengthwise.  Add to skillet, simmer until heated through and glazed, turning once.  Makes 4 to 6 servings.

1 comment:

Sam said...

French toast - yum!
Drama Queen's reaction to snow - priceless!