Apple Bumpkin Breakfast Bake (a The Foodie & the Family recipe)

You guys!  I have to share this recipe with you!  I am setting aside all of my best-laid plans for recipe posts (including the next kid-friendly item and some curries) and introspective posts(falling off the wagon — sugar! wheat! eating to self-medicate — and ways to maintain a new eating lifestyle one the rigid guidelines are set aside for true day-to-day life) so that I can share this awesome recipe during pumpkin-eating season.

I am excited about this recipe not only because it is seriously yummy (although it seriously is!), but also because it works as an awesome way to work veggies, good fats, and simple carbs into breakfast.

Recipe taken from The Foodie & The Family blog

The Recipe

Ingredients

3 tart apples, peeled, cored, and chopped into 1/2″ chunks  I used half Granny Smith & half Fuji because that’s what  had on hand; I cut them into chunks between 1/4-1/2″
2-3 very ripe bananas, mashed  I used 3 so that I could omit the maple syrup
12 large eggs
14 ounce can pumpkin puree
14 ounce can full fat coconut milk
1/4 cup maple syrup (*optional) I omitted this entirely, and strongly recommend you do the same or use only a tiny bit for maple flavoring
2 teaspoons vanilla
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/4 cup ribbon coconut  I used coconut flakes (which I assumed were the same as ribbon coconut)

Directions

“Preheat oven to 425°F. Grease a 9×13″ baking pan well with coconut oil. Toss chopped apples into the pan, spreading evenly over the bottom.

In a large bowl, mash bananas. Whisk in eggs, pumpkin puree, coconut milk, maple syrup (if using), vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt. Combine well. Pour over apples in pan.
I blended the bananas and eggs in a blender, since I was worried about my ability to get these items properly mashed & whisked.

Sprinkle the top of the mixture with sliced almonds and ribbon coconut. Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes; until set. Cut into 12 pieces and serve hot or refrigerate to serve cold.”  This needs to sit for about 5 minutes before you can cut it; if you want the pieces to be pretty, I’d wait even longer.

Anna’s Report

The Verdict:  Terrific.  Fabulous.  Tasty.  Satisfying.  We ate it straight from the oven, the moment it was cool enough not to burn our mouths, and we loved. it.  It is very custardy, with a wonderful blend of fall flavors.  Our brunch guest suggested that it was somewhere between a quiche and a custard, and while I agree, I think it falls closer to “custard.

I had some concerns about the omission of maple syrup.  I was pretty confident it would be sweet enough for me and my husband, since we’ve spent the past few months cutting back sweeteners and generally acclimating ourselves to a life without superflavors, but I wasn’t as confident that our brunch guest would feel the same way.   Her verdict?  “This is perfect; it doesn’t need to be sweeter.”

Substitutions or Alterations to the Recipe:  As noted above, I omitted the optional maple syrup. I am confident that that anybody who’s cut back on sweeteners will be very happy with this sans syrup (assuming you use 3 ripe bananas).   As a brunch dish, it really doesn’t need to be sweeter.  Perhaps I would add 1-2 Tbsp of maple syrup if I were making this as a dessert dish (for potluck or other public consumption).

For Next Time:  I wouldn’t change a thing.  I might try treating this as a custard, sticking it in a water bath in the slow cooker overnight, but I’d only do this if I were worried about 45-minute bake time first thing in the morning.

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