Fran’s Favorites: Breakfast


By Fran DeWine



We frequently have lots of people to our house for breakfast. Sometimes it’s family for holidays, overnight guests, or just those early morning campaign meetings! So I am always looking for great breakfast recipes that I can make the night before. I have some old favorites, but I am also testing some new ones for my new cookbook that I would like to share with you.

The first recipe is from my friend Janel. Janel and her family have farms in Bucyrus, Ohio, and she served this breakfast casserole at an early morning meeting. I thought it was so good, I asked her if she would share the recipe. I made it yesterday for some friends and they really liked it too. Since I didn’t have any ham I cut up bacon into small pieces and fried it and added it to the recipe and it was very good. I am going to try it with sausage too. This is a recipe you can easily double.

Janel’s Farm Breakfast Casserole

3 cups frozen shredded hash browns

3/4 cup shredded Monterey Jack cheese (or other favorite)

1 cup diced ham (or crispy crumbled bacon)

1/4 cup chopped green onions

4 eggs

1 can (12 oz.) evaporated milk

¼ teaspoon each salt and pepper

Spray 8 inch pyrex baking dish with cooking spray. Place potatoes in dish. Layer on cheese, onions and ham or crumbled bacon. Beat eggs, milk and salt and pepper and pour over potatoes. Cover and refrigerate for several hours or overnight. Bake at 350° uncovered 55-60 minutes until knife inserted in center comes out clean. This makes 6 servings.

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One of my favorite recipes is for Apple French Toast. Many years ago we stayed at a Bed and Breakfast in Georgetown, Ohio, located across the street from President Grant’s boyhood home. This is delicious and can also be made the night before.

Bailey House Apple French Toast

1 cup brown sugar, packed

1/2 cup butter

2 tablespoons light corn syrup

Cook in saucepan 4-5 minutes, until thick.

Then pour into a 9 x 13 baking pan.

Top with:

5 apples (tart), peeled and sliced

Beat together:

3 eggs

1 cup milk

1 tablespoon vanilla

Slice 1 loaf french bread into thick slices. Dip each slice into egg mixture for 15 seconds. Then place soaked bread slices on top of apples in pan. Cover and refrigerate overnight. Bake at 350° for 35-45 minutes uncovered.

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I have also been experimenting with another recipe that uses day-old croissants, cream cheese, and chocolate chips. It is pretty decadent — maybe more of a dessert! It is sort of a cross between a cheese blintz and a chocolate croissant. But delicious!

Chocolate Cheese Croissant Casserole

4 large or 8 small croissants (can use day-old croissants)

2 – 8 ounce cream cheese (softened)

3/4 cup sugar

4 eggs

2 teaspoons vanilla

2 cups milk

2 cups chocolate chips

Preheat oven to 350°. Spray 9 x 13 pan with cooking spray.

Tear up croissants and put in pan. Beat cream cheese, sugar, and eggs together with mixer. Add milk and vanilla, and mix until combined. Pour over croissant mixture. Let stand 20 minutes or refrigerate overnight. Bake 35-40 minutes or until set in center. This is delicious hot or cold.

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By Fran DeWine

Fran DeWine is a Cedarville resident, wife of Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and guest columnist. Her next cookbook, Fran DeWine and Tina Husted’s Family Favorites will come out this summer.

Fran DeWine is a Cedarville resident, wife of Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine and guest columnist. Her next cookbook, Fran DeWine and Tina Husted’s Family Favorites will come out this summer.