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The complete breakfast.

THE COMPLETE BREAKFAST

Juice and coffee are not breakfast. Nor are coffee and a piece of toast, or a so-called "breakfast bar.' And breakfast is certainly not the potato chips and pop many teen-agers down on their way to school. Breakfast, first of all, should contain a fair amount of protein. This nutrient stimulates alertness (if you have a high-protein breakfast, you may not even need the kick you now get from caffeine). Protein also helps to stave off midmorning hunger, common after a breakfast of a sweet roll and coffee. A one-ounce serving of ordinary breakfast cereal with a half glass of milk is not enough protein for an adult's breakfast (a whole glass of milk would be better, along with enough cereal to provide at least four grams of protein). On the other hand, the amount of protein in a "hearty' American-style breakfast of two eggs, three ounces of ham, one cup of milk, and two slices of toast would meet the entire day's protein needs for a 120-pound woman.

Ideally, your breakfast should contain about a third of your day's protein needs. For the ordinary adult, this rule of thumb means 15 to 20 grams of protein, the amount in any of the following: a half cup of cottage cheese, three ounces of fish, four tablespoons of peanut butter, two ounces of hard cheese, two cups of milk or rogurt (low-fat or skim), one-fourth of a 14-inch pizza, two ounces of chicken or turkey, a ten-ounce serving of bean soup, one cup of Kidney beans, or six ounces of high-protein pasta. If some of these foods are not exactly what you now consider "breakfast food,' I hope you will have some new thoughts on how to start your day.

Another important part of breakfast is juice or fruit that contains vitamin C: orange, grapefruit, tomato, strawberries, cantaloupe, apple, or cranberry juice (if vitamin C is added). Recommended quantities are a half cup of juice, half a grapefruit, a whole orange, one-fourth of a medium melon, or a half cup of berries. If your stomach can't handle a high-acid juice or fruit first thing in the morning, skip it then (perhaps replacing it with milk) and have it later in the day. Carbohydrates, so important for immediate energy needs, should also be in your breakfast menu. Ideally, they should be complex carbohydrates--starchy foods--rich in original nutrients, such as a whole-grain bread or cereal, or a bran or oatmeal muffin. Limit the fat you put on bread to one teaspoon; a teaspoon of jelly (or, better yet, unsweetened apple butter) is O.K. to add. A beverage after all this is optional, but breakfast would hardly be the same without it. Coffee, regulr or decaffeinated, is clearly Americans' favorite breakfast drink. Other possibilities include tea, skim or low-fat milk, buttermilk, water, or more fruit juice. The liquid may aid in digestion and will help give you a feeling of satisfaction. If you drink milk, you'll also give your body a hefty start on fulfilling the day's calcium needs.

Given the time constraints in most American households in the morning, it's no wonder so many people skip breakfast. There's getting up (after the snooze alarm has issued its third and final warning); making the coffee; catching the news, weather, and traffic reports; walking the dog or exercising; getting the kids up and off to school; showering; drying and setting hair; putting on make-up; dressing; and then racing off to work. Who's got time for breakfast? And, with all that racing around, whose stomach is calm enough to enjoy it? Squeezing breakfast into such a morning may be difficult, but not impossible. Here is how.

Start the night before. Decide what breakfast will be, and get it going as far as possible. Set the table or set up a tray with the needed utensils, dishes, and glassware. The juice (if frozen) can be defrosted and mixed or a fresh-fruit salad prepared; bread can be dipped in egg batter for French toast; the dry and wet ingredients for pancakes can be prepared, to be combined in a minute in the morning; the makings of cooked cereal can be measured and waiting; sandwiches can be made, to be eaten cold or grilled. You can even bake a batch of muffins before bed. The possibilities are limited only by your imagination and what may be in your refrigerator or cupboard.

Brunch has always meant a long, leisurely breakfast enjoyed with family and friends. This brunch meanu features whole grains that fit right in with a celebration of the changing fall colors.

The grains are used in nontraditional dishes, such as Spanish Flan, a molded custard served with fresh blueberry sauce. Curried Chicken Blintzes are whole-wheat crepes wrapped around a flavorful chicken salad. Toasted pine nuts make an attractive garnish for each blintze.

The menu consists of easy, make-ahead dishes that keep entertaining fun. There's no last-minute fuss or rush, so even the host can enjoy a fall morning at a leisurely pace.

Ten-Grain Spanish Flan

(Makes 8 servings)

2 cups milk

1/2 cup ten-grain cereal

2 eggs

1/2 cup honey

1 teaspoon vanilla

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Heat milk until steaming hot. Pour over cereal in mixing bowl. When lukewarm, add remaining ingredients. Pour into 9 round flan dish or cake dish. Bake in preheated 350|F. oven 50-60 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Serve chilled with blueberry topping.

Microwave tip: Heat milk by microwaving at High (100%) 4-6 minutes or until steaming hot.

Blueberry Sauce

(Makes 1 cup sauce)

1 1/2 cups fresh or frozen blueberries

1/4 cup brown sugar

1 tablespoon cornstarch

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/4 teaspoon cinnamon

Combine all ingredients in small saucepan. Cook over low heat; stir constantly until sauce boils and thickens. Serve warm or cold.

Microwave tip: Microwave all ingredients at High (100%) in 1-quart measure 4-5 minutes or until sauce boils and thickens; stir twice.

Curried Chicken Blintzes

(Makes 8 servings)

Crepes:

1 cup skin milk

3/4 cup whole-wheat flour

1/4 cup all-purpose flour

3 eggs

Filling:

2 cups finely diced cooked chicken

1/3 cup yogurt

1/2 teaspoon curry powder

2 teaspoons honey

2 teaspoons lemon juice

Dash white pepper

1/4 cup well-drained crushed pineapple

2 tablespoons lemon zest

1/4 cup toasted pine nuts

Beat crepe ingredients together until smooth. Refrigerate batter at least 1 hour. Lightly coat bottom of crepe pan or 8 skillet with cooking spray and heat at medium until hot. Using about 3 tablespoons batter, cook crepes 1-2 minutes each. Place crepes on towel to cool.

Mix chicken, yogurt, curry, honey, lemon juice, pepper, and pineapple together. Spread mixture over one side of each crepe, fold in quarters, and place on serving dish. Sprinkle each serving with lemon zest and pine nuts.

Microwave tip: Microwave 2 chicken breasts (about 1 pound) at Medium-High (70%) in 1-quart covered container 7-8 minutes or until tender. To toast pine nuts, combine nuts with 1/2 teaspoon cooking oil. Microwave at High (100%) 1-2 minutes or until lightly toasted.

Sunny Morning Cereal

(Makes 6 servings)

2 cups rolled oats

4 cups water

1/4 teaspoon salt, if desired

1/4 cup bran cereal

1/4 cup chopped dried apricots

1/2 cup raisins

Stir oats into boiling salted water. Cook, stirring occasionally, 5 minutes or until tender. Stir in remaining ingredients. Serve with milk.

Whoe-Grain Breakfast Bars

(Markes 2 dozen bars)

3 cups ten-grain cereal

1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 teaspoon salt, if desired

1/4 teaspoon soda

1 cup all-vegetable shortening

3 tablespoons cold water

Mix dry ingredients together. Coarsely cut in shortening. Add cold water; mix until ball can be formed. Roll out dough 1/4 thick on lightly floured pastry cloth. Cut into 2 3 bars. Carefully transfer bars to baking sheet. Bake in preheated 375|F. oven 15-20 minutes or until lightly toasted.

Lemon-Zucchini Tea Bread

(Markes 1 loaf)

1 1/2 cups whole-wheat flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

1/8 teaspoon salt

1/3 cup margarine

1 cup brown sugar

2 eggs

1 cup shreadded zucchini

1 tablespoon grated lemon peel

Combine dry ingredients and set aside. Cream margarine and sugar together until smooth. Beat in eggs. Stir in dry ingredients until mixture is smooth. Fold in zucchini and lemon peel. Pour batter into 9 5 loaf pan coated with cooking spray and lightly dusted with flour. Bake in preheated 350|F. oven 50-60 minutes or until set. Cool slightly and remove from pan. When completely cool, wrap tightly and store in refrigerator.

Fruit Kabobs

(Makes 8 servings)

1 fresh pineapple

2 bananas

2 fresh peaches

1 kiwi fruit

Cut pineapple into bite-size pieces; reserve juice. Cut bananas and peaches into bite-size pieces; dip each piece in pineapple juice to prevent darkening. Slice kiwi fruit. Alternate fruit on skewers and refrigerate until serving.
COPYRIGHT 1987 Saturday Evening Post Society
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1987 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Title Annotation:includes recipes
Author:Brody, Jane E.
Publication:Saturday Evening Post
Date:Oct 1, 1987
Words:1496
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