A Happy Mother’s Day…

8 May

…begins with a good breakfast.

And this I’m certain about because breakfast is the first meal of the day, the meal that sets up a person’s mood, the meal that has no rules!

Perhaps, I’m bias because I love (lovelovelovelove) breakfast, but hey, Mother’s Day is also known for good breakfasts, cards, flowers, and simply showering mom with love. :)

The Card and Flowers

So for this Mother’s Day, I wanted to get my mom something, but nothing at the stores seemed just right for the occasion. I spent almost 2 hours browsing stores in a mall, walking up and down and to and fro, and talking to sales ladies and chit chatting about ideas. Still nothing.

At Japan Town, I did manage to find a card I liked, but since it was time to go (my ride was here) and the store was at the opposite end of the mall, I decided to go back with my friend Michelle later, which we did and this was the card I bought that perhaps inspired me with the fabulous breakfast idea:

Mother's Day card with white flowers

Cute, right? But notice the burnt toast...I told my mom I'd never burn the toast because 1) Bread/toast is precious 2) It's terrible to eat

So after being inspired by the card, I knew the next thing to do was get flowers. I don’t believe I’ve mentioned it yet and actually come to think of it, I know I haven’t mentioned it yet because I didn’t want to jinx it, BUT I am growing chives and was growing onions. The failed story of the onions was that it attracted some kind of strange bug, which after some research seems to have been aphids (not really sure). These pesky bugs destroyed and killed some of my mom’s plants at home as their leaves turned black/brown and withered away. :( So for Mother’s Day, I knew it had to be a plant and not just a bouquet of flowers.

Getting the plant was tricky since hiding it would be difficult. Yesterday after volunteering, I told my mom I was extending an hour at the senior home so that I could bus my way to Laurel Village to Bryan’s Grocery to buy a plant and ingredients for my breakfast surprise. Luckily even though I missed my first bus, another one came 5 minutes later and I successful got the plant, some organic chives (mine aren’t tall enough yet to cut), and the puff pastry dough. Carrying the Bryan’s bag was easy enough. When my mom picked me up, I simply told her to pop the trunk and there went the bag into another bag. And since we did grocery shopping next (and I carry most of the bags), she didn’t notice the extra bag.

Hiding the plant when I got home was still tricky though. I couldn’t let it suffocate so between my bed and the wall, I placed the plant near the window. Mom never noticed it, but my cat had her nose near it the entire time. I kept trying to shoo her away, but she enjoyed sitting right next to it so often that my mom once said, “Where’s Tiger?” and I looked over and saw her there. I had to close the bedroom door so Tiger wouldn’t give away the surprise.

The Breakfast

After rounding up all my ingredients from Bryan’s, I planned to wake up early on Sunday around 7:30 or so. For once I was glad that Tiger is a pest in the morning. She jumps on top of the bed and sits right next to my face and cries long mournful meows. The cause? Hunger pangs. This time I woke up when she cried, fed her, and got to work in the kitchen by first taking out the puff pastry to let it thaw out.

While the pastry was thawing, I cooked the ground turkey meat with garlic and onions. After this, sliced 2 medium eggplants, and 1/4 of a red bell pepper. I took 5 eggs out of the fridge along with the egg beater container. Then I preheated the oven to 400F.

Since the pastry wasn’t done thawing yet, I prepared the waffle iron (and created lots of noise), tried moving the cookie sheets, cake pans, muffin pans, etc. from where they were to a new location (and created even more noise), and then tried to get the plates from the cabinet (and created even MORE noise because I knocked over the ENTIRE stack of bakeware). Yikes. I thought I woke up Mom but apparently, if I close the dining room door to the hallway and the bedroom is also closed, then I can destroy the whole kitchen and not wake up Mom. :)

Finally, the the pastry was ready, I laid one pastry layer down, spread the turkey as the bottom layer, neatly placed the eggplants and bell peppers on top, sprinkled freshly grated Parmesan cheese and chives, cracked the five eggs (and poked them), and poured 1/2 cup of egg beaters into the 9-inch square cake pan. Finally, I laid the second pastry layer on top, spread an egg wash, and then sprinkled more cheese. Into the oven my creation went for 30 minutes.

First layers: pastry, turkey, eggplant

Bottom layers: pastry, ground turkey cooked with garlic and onions, and eggplant slices

Upper layers: red bell peppers, 5 eggs, 1/2 cup egg beaters, chopped organic chives, and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese

Upper layers: red bell peppers, 5 eggs, 1/2 cup egg beaters, chopped organic chives, and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese

Waffle time.

Not wanting to use a mix from a box, I looked up a recipe and then just poured it into the waffle maker. Of course, I couldn’t help but add something to recipe (vanilla extract). While the waffles were cooking, I cut up strawberries and a banana. I was tempted to make a smoothie, but then decided against it.

Vanilla Waffles with strawberries and banana slices

Vanilla Waffles with strawberries and banana slices

Oh, I forgot to mention that while I was at the senior home, they were selling banana walnut cake (which I’ve helped them make before) so I bought that too. So when the waffles were cooking, I cut several slices of the cake and prepared them in the microwave to heat up.

Walnut banana cake slices courtesey of St. Anne's Home

Walnut banana cake slices courtesey of St. Anne's Home. They were deliciously moist and very banana-y.

After some more cooking and prepping, I was ready.

The breakfast table

The breakfast table

Out of everything I made/had available, Mom loved the pastry the best. Here’s the final outcome in case you were curious….

Final layers of Breakfast Puff Pastry

Final layers of Breakfast Puff Pastry

For all you mothers out there and mothers-to-be, Happy Mother’s Day! :)

The Recipes

  1. Ultimate Breakfast Puff Pastry
    *I added slices of 2 eggplants and slices of 1/4 of a red bell pepper
    * I used 1/4 of a package of ground turkey instead of ham; and substituted 1/2 cup of egg beaters for 2 eggs.
  2. Waffles
    *I added 1/4 tsp of vanilla extra.
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