I believe it was the wise Walt Whitman who once said, “I love sleep because it’s like a time machine to breakfast.”
Or maybe that was Bill Murray. I’m not really sure. All I know is that when my dreary eyes peel open in the morning, they’re eagerly in search of the next meal. It’s important to choose this initial nosh wisely as it very well may determine the rest of your day. If you stuff your belly with a greasy, carb-loaded diner dish (well, first of all you’re probably hungover), and two—prepare for hibernation. I opt for interesting, yet easy-to-prepare breakfasts that allow me to come out and play especially in these skin-bearing months. Get out of here egg whites, I’m not talking to you. For me, intentional healthful eating is not about reading nutrition labels—it’s about feeding my soul. That means considering moderation—balancing a hint of a bacon with a boatload of spinach—and thoughtfully approaching every bite. Here are my top three suggestions for upping your summertime breakfast game. Let’s get crackin’. No, seriously. We’re starting with eggs.
Farmer’s Market Kitchen Sink Baked Eggs
Other than it being acceptable to wear jean shorts 24/7, my favorite thing about summer is taking advantage of the abundant produce. That being said, I base my weekend brunches on what’s growing down at the local market. I bring home my goodies, give them a bath, and it’s off to the races. I run my knife through frilly kale leaves and crisp them in neutral oil over high heat. I peel rainbow carrots into strips and quick-pickle them. I chop heirloom tomatoes and toss them with extra-virgin olive oil and sea salt. What’s my point? Everything, and I mean everything, goes with eggs. So for a fresh, hearty, and nourishing breakfast: roast, sauté or pickle your Farmer’s Market finds, layer them into individual oven-safe ramekins, crack in two eggs—and bake to your yolk’s desire. For a vibrant pop of color on top, sprinkle with crushed red pepper flakes, fresh herbs, and cracked pepper.
Lavender & Vanilla Green Smoothie
I know, I know. The green smoothie craze is long gone. But that doesn’t mean some of us still aren’t still exploring innovative ways to get our buzz on. That came out wrong, but you know what I meant. I pride myself on coupling unexpected ingredients because with a name like Fanny—coloring inside the lines is simply out of the question. One of my most beloved flavor combinations is fresh herbs in an already-leafy beverage. I’m an avid lavender enthusiast. If you didn’t already know that about me, then you likely haven’t picked up a copy of my book Orange, Lavender & Figs: Deliciously Different Recipes from a Passionate Eater published by Rachael Ray Books (but you can do that here: www.fannyslater.com/cookbook). Next time you’re zipping up a kale smoothie, toss in some fresh or dried lavender for a floral boost of flavor (and a hearty scoop of vanilla Greek yogurt for protein). Lavender. Vanilla. Green. Healthy. Tasty. Boom. You’re welcome.
Tropical Quinoa Breakfast Bowl with Lions and Tigers & Berries Oh My!
One can only enjoy so many yogurt parfaits, so what to do with that endless amount of August fruit? My vote goes to piling it on top of a mountain of protein-packed grains, surrounding it in a river of chilly almond milk, and garnishing it with pieces of paradise. Over a decade ago, my big sister jetted out from the Carolina coast and head straight for Oahu. I’m constantly looking for tasty ways to give a nod to her Hawaiian home, and this tropical breakfast bowl does exactly that. In addition to a pinch of brown sugar, fresh sliced fruit, and chia seeds—try decorating this magically delicious masterpiece with coconut shreds and a mixture of toasted pistachios and macadamia nuts. Aloha, y’all.
Plate licker, storyteller, published author, cat lady, and winner of the Rachael Ray Great American Cookbook Competition.