|Sweet and Crunchy French Toast was easy to make and delicious.|
My online and offline worlds are colliding more and more frequently nowadays but I still often feel self-conscious inviting my “offline” friends into my online life. Everyone always ends up having a great time, but I still have a tough time sleeping the night before, worrying that I’m imposing on my friends and that they won’t enjoy themselves. This week was no exception, if anything, my jitters were worse than ever because I’m the new kid in town.
On Monday, I invited some friends from school and some members of the Chicago Moms collaborative blog, to my house for brunch with their kids. The breakfast was sponsored by Kellogg’s who sent a huge box of breakfast cereals (Corn Pops, Frosted Flakes, Rice Krispies, Froot Loops, Apple Jacks, and Frosted Mini Wheats) for me to serve my guests. Kelloggs also provided me with a stipend to purchase other breakfast items and compensated me for my time.
I supplemented the cereal bar with two easy to make brunch dishes: a Wake Up Casserole of eggs, cheese, and Canadian bacon and a Sweet and Crunchy French Toast platter. I got both recipes from the Kellogg’s website and tweaked them a little. Both were delicious and instant additions to my brunch repertoire.
The purpose of the breakfast wasn’t just to eat cereal and homemade dishes made with cereals, there was some actual work involved for my guests, which is what made me a nervous hostess. The event included a 30-minute discussion with the Kellogg’s marketing team about breakfast challenges via Skype.
Turns out that I had no cause for worry. My friends were excited to pepper the Kellogg’s team with questions about the sugar content of cereals, nutrition, new products and Kellogg’s philanthropic initiatives. We ended up having a spirited and interesting discussion about the difficulties of keeping our kids fed, happy, and healthy. It was almost a group therapy session at times as we all admitted to occasionally giving our kids dry cereal as they walked to school just to get some breakfast in them, and realized as a group that dry cereal was actually a nutritious choice. After the call, more than one of my friends thanked me for the opportunity to talk directly to the Kellogg’s team and get their questions and concerns answered.
Once the Skype connection closed, our breakfast went back to normal. We ate, drank some more coffee, and gossiped a little more while the girls played dress up and the boys played the Wii. Then, one by
one, my guests took their leave, saying they’d had a wonderful time, and asking for these recipes.
Sweet and Crunchy French Toast Casserole
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 3 hours
8 1-inch-thick slices firm-textured, honey wheat bread (about 16 oz. total)
1 can (12 oz.) evaporated fat-free milk
1/2 cup sugar
2 tablespoon vanilla
1 1/2 teaspoons cinnamon
2 cups Kellogg’s Frosted Flakes® cereal
2 tablespoons butter, melted
3 cups fresh raspberries, blueberries, or sliced strawberries
1 cup maple syrup, warmed
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Arrange bread in single overlapping layers in 13 x 9 x 2-inch baking dish.
- In medium bowl whisk together milk, eggs, sugar, vanilla and cinnamon. Evenly pour over bread slices. Cover and refrigerate for 2 to 24 hours. Use spatula to turn bread slices once.
- Bake, uncovered, at 375°F for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, in small bowl combine KELLOGG’S FROSTED FLAKES cereal and butter. Evenly sprinkle over casserole. Bake, uncovered, at 375°F about 20 minutes more or until knife inserted near center comes out clean. Let stand for 5 minutes.
- Cut into 8 rectangles. Transfer to serving plates. Sprinkle with berries. Serve with syrup.
|These light and cheesy casseroles tasted like a delicate souffle.|
Wake Up Casserole
Prep Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 9 hours
3 cups cubed dry French bread (3 oz.)
2 cups Kellogg’s® Rice Krispies cereal
1 1/2 cups shredded Provolone or cheddar cheese (6 oz.), divided
1 cup diced Canadian-style bacon, diced
2 cups milk
4 eggs, lightly beaten
2 tablespoons chopped bottled roasted red sweet pepper
2 teaspoons Dijon-style mustard
1 tablespoon butter, melted
- In a large bowl, toss together bread cubes, 1 cup KELLOGG’S Rice Krispies cereal, 1 cup cheese, and Canadian bacon. Divide among six 10-ounce individual casseroles or place all of the mixture in one 2-quart rectangular baking dish.
- In a medium bowl, whisk milk, eggs, roasted red pepper, and mustard. Pour over bread mixture in casseroles or baking dish. Cover; refrigerate at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours.
- Toss remaining 1 cup cereal with melted butter, crushing slightly; sprinkle cereal mixture and remaining cheese atop egg mixture. Bake at 350ºF, uncovered, 25 to 30 minutes for individual casseroles (40 minutes for 2-quart baking dish) or until evenly puffed and a knife inserted near center comes out clean. Let stand for 5 minutes before serving.