Get a jump on breakfast (anytime)

August 22, 2008

Now that school’s starting up again, breakfast is foremost on many parents’ minds — as in, how do I get something nourishing into the kids and still get out the door on time? Our morning routine is only pushed up by about half an hour on school days, but that’s definitely enough to put a kink in everyone’s mood.

So here’s my offering to communal breakfast wisdom: Head Start Coffee Cake. It’s a simple recipe that was handed down to me from my dad’s cousin way back when, but I didn’t make it very often until I had kids. Now it’s a standby because I can mix it up the night before and pop it into the oven in the morning, then go see to the kids without worrying about it. The topping has nuts (yay for protein!) and fruit that can be adjusted to your taste. Pretty much any berries or sliced stone fruits work — blueberries and plums are two of our favorites — and you can mix and match however you want. Frozen fruits work just fine.

Head Start Coffee Cake

Lightly grease a 9×13-inch pan.

For the topping, stir together: 3/4 cup brown sugar, 1/2 cup chopped pecans (or other nuts) and 1 1/4 tsp. cinnamon. Set aside.

Using a mixer, beat until light and fluffy: 3/4 c. butter and 1 cup sugar.

Add: 2 eggs and 1 8-oz. carton lite sour cream. Beat well.

Then add: 2 c. flour, 1 tsp. baking powder, 1/2 tsp. salt and 1 tsp. nutmeg. Beat until the dry ingredients are thoroughly mixed in.

Pour the batter into the pan. Sprinkle on the fruit of your choice (strawberries, raspberries, peaches, etc., then sprinkle on the topping. Cover the pan and refrigerate overnight. In the morning, uncover the pan and bake for 35 to 40 minutes in an oven preheated to 350 degrees. It’s done when a toothpick inserted in the center comes out clean.

Serve warm or cold. Leftovers should be covered and stored in the fridge for the following day’s breakfast.

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