Ah, December: my favorite time of year! For so many reasons:
- the end of one year, signaling the beginning of another
- Christmas music!
- Christmas shopping (I actually really enjoy that part!)
- dreaming up Christmas lists
- get-togethers with family and friends
- special Christmas performances and concerts
- ... and, of course, all the Christmas flavors, and the food, delicious food!
How about you? Do you enjoy December?
It doesn't really matter, I guess, because ready or not, here it is! And here we go, into the frenzied but fun mad rush of a holiday season, hanging on by the merest thread of our sanity. I love it!
To celebrate the beginning of the season, here's a great recipe you can try any day of the week, for breakfast or dinner. If it's just too much to think about in the midst of all the craziness, save it for Christmas Day breakfast.
But really, I promise: it is SO easy. All you need is some healthy bread (homemade or storebought, doesn't matter, but make sure it's whole grain), a few eggs, and some healthy eggnog (homemade or storebought: I paid way too much for a carton of the good organic stuff, but I just couldn't bring myself to buy those cartons with all the HFCS, preservatives, coloring, flavoring and whatnot).
Seriously, it couldn't be easier: follow these directions for French Toast (or make them as you usually do), except swap out the milk for eggnog instead. See what I mean? Easy! A simple switch and you have a festive, ready-for-Christmas flavor that takes the ordinary into the realm of extraordinary.
And perfect for December.
You can top them with real maple syrup or honey, or to make them even more special, try enjoying them with this Cinnamon Syrup (I use 1 1/2 tsp cornstarch instead of the flour, and about 3/4 cup of raw sugar instead of the sugars). (Another fun idea would be cranberry sauce - not the canned kind.)
And for a really decadent breakfast treat, whip some cream up with another dollop of eggnog. I used about 1/2 cup of cream and a tablespoon of eggnog. Top with a dusting of cinnamon.
This is just as QUICK as regular French Toast. Making the syrup and whipped cream yourself will add a little bit of time, but not much - 10-15 minutes at most.
It's so EASY, too. Anyone can make French toast, and anyone can make Festive French Toast!
Eggnog is not exactly CHEAP, I'll admit. I paid more than I care to say for a small carton of the organic variety, but to be honest, regular conventional eggnog is not that much cheaper. Even if I made it myself, it would still be a seasonal luxury. But that's part of what makes it festive and fun!
HEALTHY really depends on the quality of the components you use. If you use regular old store-bought bread (especially white bread), Aunt Jemima-type syrup, conventional eggnog and whipped topping, it will most definitely NOT be healthy. However, if you use:
- whole-grain bread w/o artificial ingredients (I used homemade oat bread)
- maple syrup, honey, or homemade syrup
- real whipped cream
- and eggnog without artificial ingredients or extra sugar
it can be a relatively healthy meal when rounded out with plenty of fresh fruit.
Enjoy; and Happy December!