recipe: french toast casserole

Like most casseroles, this recipe is quite a simple one to make. It is delicious and yields big results. Just make sure that you set aside a lot of resting time for the bread to soak up the ingredients. Feel free to use the recipe for my favourite bread, or you can choose to buy your own loaf!

French Toast Casserole with Berries

Ingredients:

1 loaf Emory’s Favourite Whole Wheat Bread
6 large eggs
1 1/2 cup milk, any kind
1/4 cup syrup, any kind
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1/2 cup brown sugar
1 cup strawberries (fresh or frozen), sliced
1 cup blueberries
4 tbsp unsalted butter
Powdered sugar, to sprinkle

Steps:

1. Grease an oblong casserole dish (approximately 9” x 13”) with butter.

2. Take a loaf of bread and cut it into cubes. Place cubes evenly in casserole dish.

3. In a large bowl, add the eggs, milk, syrup, vanilla extract, salt, cinnamon, and brown sugar. Whisk or beat with an electric mixer until mixture is homogenous. Then pour onto bread cubes, making sure you get every one. Top with berries and add dollops of butter. Cover with tin foil and put in refrigerator for about 4 hours.

4. Preheat oven to 350°F. Remove casserole from fridge and place in oven. Bake for 25 minutes with foil on, then remove it and bake for another 10 minutes. Take it out of the oven, and dust with powdered sugar. Cut into pieces and place on plates. Feel free to add as much syrup to your dish as you please!

Emory

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our trip to waskesiu

Hello friends and hello summer!!

Last weekend Geoffrey and I took the children to Prince Albert National Park. Apart from going there last year, it’s something that we used to do every June for our anniversary until we became parents. Once we had Remy, we stopped going camping.

This marks our second summer in a row in Waskesiu, and I think that it’s a tradition that we are going to keep up again. Everyone truly loves it. Last year we went as a family of four in our renovated tent trailer. This year we went as a family of five at stayed at Elk Ridge Lodge. Oh. My. Goodness. It was beyond beautiful. It reminded me more of Colorado than Saskatchewan. The resort has a pool and water slide, two restaurants, spa, a zip line and rock wall, golf course, and more! I can’t ever see us staying anywhere else in the whole of the National Park.

Here are the pictures from our trip. I hope that you like them!

It’s always such an exciting time with the change of a new season. Summer is especially welcome on the prairies as it means there will be no cold or snow for several months. Um, yes please!

What are your plans for this summer? Do you have any vacations booked? Let me know.

And happy belated Father’s Day to the men out there!

Emory

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introducing healthier eating to your household

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Healthy eating is key to a happy and energetic life, yet it’s true to say that it’s not always easy to do. With fast food options on seemingly every street corner, as well as the growing convenience of being able to order food to our door at a moment’s notice; it’s true to say that for the most part, healthy eating is a decision you have to make, not something you fall into.

However, doing so can not only help you enjoy a greater degree of variance in the cuisine you eat, but it can help you make a lifelong love of cooking in the best possible way. Introducing healthier eating to your household may seem like a chore, but actually, and with your family’s support, this can be a worthwhile task that may take less effort to achieve than you had expected.

Yet these platitudes are baseless without any real advice to back them up, and so in this post, please allow us the chance to introduce healthier eating into your household via the following guidance:

Vegetable Substitutes

The growing industry of vegan foods and substitutes is allowing once indulgent treats to become healthier while offering the same beautiful and delicious treats we were used to. However, this is not the case by default, and so it’s always best to look at the packing of certain goods to make sure. Sugar-free almond milk, for instance, can make a nice competitor to usual full-fat milk, while meat substitutes use beans and other vegetables like spinach to compose the body and offer a great way of enjoying your ‘five-a-day.’ 

When these products are promoted, it’s often through the lens of recommending vegetables as part of a vegan lifestyle only, instead of just a nice purchase you can make when you wish to eat more healthily. In other words, even omnivores can benefit here, which is what most people are. So why not go to your local supermarket and see which healthy vegan items can be picked out? Something as simple as a substitution could help you eat more healthily without really noticing too much of a difference.

Switch Up Your Preparation Methods

A good method that people use in order to eat more healthily is to find different means of preparing their foods. To use an example, steamed vegetables tend to taste beautiful and they can be cooked entirely without oil. 

If you were to take all the oil you could have consumed over the course of a year by cooking in this way, you may realize that you’ve spared your body the intake of at least one 2-liter bottle of vegetable oil. When compared in those terms, it’s not hard to see just how much changing a preparation method can serve as a new direction in your cooking journey.

Sweet, Natural Ingredients 

Many people have a sweet tooth, only to varying degrees. For some, their sweet tooth may completely override their sense of actually wishing for robust savory meals, for others, simply eating a nice meal and then following it up with a dessert occasionally is enough.

No matter where on this line you fall, it can be nice to figure out how to make our indulgences healthier to deal with. We believe that sweeter yet more natural ingredients can make a big difference. Instead of eating a brownie or muffin today, why not enjoy some greek yoghurt with blueberries over your oats? As you can see, often it’s the little things that make the difference, even when it’s as simple as squeezing raw fruit juice and freezing them for a lollipop later. At least here there’ll be no added sugar at all.

Preparing Meals

When we prepare meals for ourselves each day, we’re so much less likely to go for local fast food or food you cannot control the content of. At home, this is a little easier. For instance, a fantastic grilled chicken sandwich recipe crafted at home can help you prepare a lunch that rivals anything you may purchase from a local fast food joint, yet still provides you with a nice indulgence that other people are avoiding outright. Simply knowing what’s going in to certain recipes can be a big boost for some people, providing them with the chance to truly thrive going forward.

With this advice, you’re certain to introduce healthier eating to your household in the best possible way. With a little effort and preparation, even the little things can have a positive effect.

** This was a contributed post.

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3 simple techniques to improve your kitchen ability

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For those who may not have much time to cook at home outside of preparing meals for the family, experimenting, as a home cook would, may not be something that feels possible. In order to save time, this can leave you creating meals as quickly as you can, continually eating the same things, and relying on convenience foods perhaps more often than we’re comfortable with.

Now, there’s no shame in bringing a frozen pizza to the table or to order takeout when you need to, nor do you need to justify however much time you can spend in the kitchen just because someone you follow on Instagram seems to create beautiful meals six times a day.

Perhaps you may not have ever really focused on learning how to cook a range of meals instead of some home comforts. Again, there’s nothing wrong with this. However, it can be nice to expand our repertoire when we have the time for it, or to try and find joy in cooking so that following the extra mile makes sense. In this post, we’ll discuss three simple techniques that can improve your kitchen ability in the best way:

Perfect The Basics

It’s a shame how many people under-value the supreme benefit that comes from perfecting the basic meals we otherwise enjoy. Comfort food deserves to be looked at with care, too. For instance, this gooey mac and cheese recipe made with pub cheese can showcase how it’s the additional measures that allow cooking to shine. No matter if this means rubbing garlic cloves on your olive-oil stained sourdough, or learning how to rest meat properly before cooking it, if you can perfect a simple meal, perhaps your favorite, then immediately you can transfer those additional skills elsewhere.

Inspire Your Spice & Herb Rack

Those who know how to wield spices and herbs appropriately have figured out 50% of how to become a great cook. From learning which tastes go with which ingredients, such as parsley used on new potatoes, or just the right amount of cumin used in a chili, as well as learning a better combination of spices (there is nothing quite like Indian cooking learnt at home to help solidify these lessons), the more you can source fresh spices and herbs and use them with care and reverence, the more your cooking game explodes in possibility.

Befriend Your Appliances

It’s healthy to befriend your appliances from time to time, as it were, and to make sure that you truly do understand their operation. From air fryers to slow cookers, or simply knowing that a potato peeler can be used both ways and more easily via that swiping direction, reading the manuals, testing out recipes, perfecting the timing, this can help your cooking approach become better and more endearing than ever. You may be deeply surprised as to just how well this approach can work.

With this advice, we believe you’ll be able to perfect your kitchen ability in the best possible light.

** This was a contributed post.

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recipe: favourite whole wheat bread

This a recipe that I have been making weekly for years now! It’s big, soft, almost fall-apart-melt-in-your-mouth bread. It’s like a warm hug in food form! I make it with 50% whole wheat and 50% all-purpose flour, so that it’s not overly dry but also not overly unhealthy (as far as bread goes). You can really mix up the ratios yourself, though. Add more whole wheat if you would like it to be healthier, or less whole wheat if you prefer whiter bread. Additionally, it contains no eggs or dairy for those who are intolerant of them.

Halve this recipe if you are wanting a smaller yield. Or if you’re like me and you prefer to have extra bread to freeze, follow the directions exactly! Enjoy!

Favourite Whole Wheat Bread

Makes 4 loaves

Ingredients:

1 cup granulated sugar
3 tbsp active dry yeast
4 cups warm water
1/2 cup canola or vegetable oil, plus more to grease
1 tsp salt
6 cups whole wheat flour
6 cups all-purpose flour
Butter or margarine

Steps:

1. In a large bowl, add the sugar, yeast, and warm water. Mix well, then cover with a tea towel for 15 minutes or until the yeast has bubbled.

2. Remove towel. Next add the oil, salt, and flour- the whole wheat first followed by the all-purpose one cup at a time. Make sure to stir in-between each cup. (It will work out to be 12 cups exactly, but it could also turn out to be closer to 11 cups or 13 cups depending on how you prefer the texture of the dough.) When the dough is no longer sticky, transfer to a floured surface. Knead for another 5 minutes until smoothed out. Form into a ball and place in a new, large, oil-greased bowl. Cover with a tea towel. Put in oven with the light on for 1 hour to let rise.

3. After dough has risen, remove it from oven and punch it down. Then grease 4 loaf pans with oil. Cut the dough into 4 equal pieces. Form into the shape of a loaf and place each one in a pan. Cover loaves with a tea towel and leave on countertop to let rise for 20 minutes. Meanwhile, set the oven to 375°F.

4. After dough has risen for the second time, remove tea towel and place all 4 on the middle rack of your oven. Bake for 35 minutes or until a deep golden brown. Remove and brush with butter. Let cool down before slicing into them.

Note: This bread should be stored in an airtight container or wrapped in tin foil at room temperature. Do not refrigerate. They keep well up to a few days. Otherwise, you can wrap them and freeze them up to a few months. (Pictured is a loaf that has been frozen and thawed!)

Emory

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  • Welcome, friends! My name is Emory. I am a wife and mother to four (three on earth and one in heaven). This is our life on the Canadian prairies.
    email: helloscarlettblog@outlook.com

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