Designer Brinner

“A contraction of the words breakfast and dinner, brinner is breakfast eaten at the time you usually eat dinner.”

I enjoy eating brinner. As a kid, I definitely didn’t mind eating a giant bowl of Capt’n Crunch for dinner. I loved it when my dad would make pancakes (or even waffles!) and bacon just because we didn’t feel like eating anything else, but we ate it often enough that it wasn’t unusual. My SO really didn’t eat breakfast for dinner very often, so it isn’t really something that’s in my repertoire.

Today, that changed.

I really need to charge my camera. This picture does not do this dinner justice.

Bacon, cheese, and potato frittata with pumpkin pancakes. A frittata is an Italian version of a quiche: beaten eggs mixed with other ingredients like meats, vegetables, and cheese. I fried up some nice center cut bacon cut into small pieces, then drained them on paper. I had a bag of Russet potatoes hanging around starting to become potato plants so I grated about six of those (along with my thumb) and fried them in a little bacon fat. After those cooked for a while, I mixed the bacon back in then poured the eggs into the pan and then put it in the oven to finish. I served it with some melted Cheddar cheese and it was beautiful… except my potatoes turned an unappealing shade of gray. They taste just fine, but for some reason, my fresh grated potatoes turn gray. When I use frozen shredded potatoes, they don’t turn gray. It’s a mystery to me. The extras were kept in a plastic container in the fridge because the SO loves leftovers.

My current cooking-with-pumpkin kick has led me to this recipe courtesy of the SO’s Men’s Health magazine. I liked this recipe because it starts with your usual dry pancake mix; I happen to use Bisquik’s Healthy Heart dry mix. I also like any excuse to cook with molasses. I didn’t have premade pumpkin pie spice, but I did have cinnamon, cloves, ginger, and nutmeg so I just eyeballed it and subbed in a teaspoon of cinnamon, 1/4 teaspoon of cloves, 1/2 teaspoon of ginger, and just a small amount of fresh grated nutmeg. By the way, if you can get your hands on whole nutmeg, DO IT. They last forever and it’s really simple to just use a Microplane or zester to add it to your cooking instead of the stuff in a jar. I used buttermilk instead of milk because I had a quart hanging around from when I made pumpkin muffins, and I’m really trying to make sure random ingredients that I buy for single recipes don’t go to waste. I didn’t notice any difference except the pancakes were slightly tangy, and maybe the batter was a little thicker.

The recipe says it will yield about 20 pancakes, I made 16. My SO commented on how thick they were, and a serving size is three pancakes. You have to serve them with real maple syrup; Aunt Jemima is not going to cut it here. They were very hearty and totally worth the 300 calories. I froze the remaining pancakes stacked between layers of wax paper inside a Ziploc bag.

You may notice that my pancakes and frittata have their own plates. I’m very picky about separating my sweet and savory breakfast foods. I don’t really like having syrup on my eggs. Now hashbrowns by themselves are excellent with syrup, but not eggs.

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