The parade has run its course and the turkey has been gobbled, but all those out-of-town guests are still cheerfully mingling around your dining table. Of course, you can always treat them to a meal out on the town. But then what are you to do with the cornucopia of foil-wrapped dishes cluttering your refrigerator?
Here, find a few festive, seasonal dishes from the Mobile Bay Magazine archives that are perfect for a mouthwatering Friday morning brunch. You’ll cover two meals at once and use up many of Thursday’s leftovers. Plenty to be thankful for indeed!
1. Bay Breeze Breakfast Bread Pudding Casserole
This sweet, seasonal dish from Bay Breeze Bed and Breakfast is ideal for the holidays. It is impressive, yet easy to make Thanksgiving evening using any leftover bread — and it feeds a crowd. Simply refrigerate until ready to bake.
1 pound loaf cinnamon-raisin bread, cubed (or whatever bread is left over)
1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese, cubed
1 cup peeled, diced apples
1 cup coarsely chopped pecans
1 cup diced cranberries (such as Craisins)
3 cups half-and-half
1 stick butter, melted
1/2 cup maple syrup
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. Coat a 9-by-13-inch baking dish with cooking spray. Arrange half of the cubed bread over the bottom of the baking dish.
3. Sprinkle cream cheese cubes evenly over bread. Add apples, pecans and cranberries, distributing each evenly.
4. In large bowl, beat eggs, half-and-half, butter and syrup. Pour over bread mixture.
5. Cover with plastic wrap and press down so that all the bread pieces are well soaked. Refrigerate overnight.
6. Uncover. Bake 45 minutes in the center of the oven. Let stand for 10 minutes before serving. Serves 10
2. Black Forest Ham and Spinach Frittata with Roasted Red Peppers
This is Daphne chef Will Hughes’ rich and hearty breakfast dish. It’s a perfect way to put to use all that leftover ham.
10 eggs, lightly beaten
2 cups heavy cream
salt and pepper, to taste
2 teaspoons garlic powder (optional)
5 cups angel hair pasta, cooked
3 – 4 cups shredded sharp cheddar, divided
2 cups chopped spinach, sautéed
2 cups blackened, grilled and chopped ham
1/4 cup chopped roasted red pepper, plus extra (thinly sliced) to top frittata
1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Prepare large springform pan by wrapping bottom (and 3 inches up the sides) with aluminum foil.
2. Stir eggs and cream, just until well mixed. Season egg mixture with salt, pepper and garlic powder.
3. Spread pasta in a thick layer over the bottom of springform pan. Add a layer of cheese.
4. Add layers of the spinach and ham. Sprinkle the chopped roasted red pepper over top.
5. Pour egg mixture over all layers. Top with a final cheese layer.
6. Place springform pan into a larger baking pan (more than 3 inches deep). Fill baking pan halfway with very hot water. Bake frittata, uncovered, in water bath for 1 hour, or until toothpick comes out clean. Remove carefully from oven. Serves 4 – 6
3. Baked Cheddar-Jack Corn Grits
This creamy comfort food recipe from Chef George Panayiotou is a tasty way to repurpose extra corn.
2 cups water
2 cups milk
2 tablespoons butter
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup uncooked quick grits
1 cup cream of chicken soup
3/4 cup sharp grated cheddar cheese
3/4 cup grated jalapeño-jack cheese
1 cup whole kernel corn, drained
1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
2. In large saucepan, bring water and milk to a boil, add butter and mix well. Add salt and grits.
3. Boil and whisk for 2 minutes to remove all lumps. Stir and turn off the heat. Cover for 10 – 15 minutes.
4. Add chicken soup, cheeses and corn and stir well. Turn all into a greased casserole dish and sprinkle with paprika. Bake uncovered in the oven for 30 – 45 minutes. Serves 4 – 6
4. Celebration Milk Punch
This beverage is a flavorful, festive way to kick off the holiday season. Make it by the glass so individuals can add as much sugar and cream or ice as they like.
1 heaping teaspoon powdered sugar
1 1/2 ounces brandy
1/2 ounce light rum
1/2 ounce half-and-half
6 ounces whole milk
freshly ground nutmeg
1. Spoon powdered sugar into desired glass. Stir in brandy and rum.
2. Add half-and-half and milk; stir briskly again. Sprinkle with nutmeg. Serves 1
5. Spiced Sweet Potato Cake with Caramel Icing
Victoria Stimpson makes this cake for many different occasions. Not only does it put to use extra sweet potatoes, but it’s delicious any time of day, particularly with a morning cup of coffee or milk punch. Let the season of splurging begin!
4 (8-ounce) sweet potatoes
2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 1/4 teaspoons ground ginger
1 teaspoon baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups sugar
1 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoon vanilla
Caramel Icing (see below)
1. Cook sweet potatoes in the microwave for 16 minutes, turning once halfway through the cook time. Cool, peel and mash. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. Spray Bundt pan with nonstick cooking spray. Sift all dry ingredients (except sugar). Measure out 2 cups of sweet potatoes, combine with sugar and oil and beat until smooth. Add eggs, 2 at a time. Add sifted ingredients and beat until blended. Stir in vanilla and pour into Bundt pan.
3. Bake for 1 hour and 5 minutes. Cool in pan on a rack. When completely cool, turn out and drizzle generously with Caramel Icing. Serves approximately 12 – 16
1 cup powdered sugar
3/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/4 cup butter
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
1. Sift powdered sugar into a large bowl. In a saucepan, stir brown sugar, whipping cream and butter over medium-low heat until melted.
2. Turn up the heat and bring to a boil for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Pour over powdered sugar and whisk for 1 minute.
3. Let cool, stirring every once in a while for 15 minutes.
Find more delicious recipes in our cookbook, “Bay Appetit: A Second Helping of Lower Alabama Dishes.” Whether you’re new to the kitchen or a well-seasoned chef, we have dishes for all skill levels. Click here to purchase.