Sometimes you just HAVE to make 'an uncommon breakfast'

There are some times when a departure from the usual breakfast is called for.

This can happen if overnight guests are visiting or if you have been asked to bring a dish for a morning planning session of your neighborhood committee.

This suggestion I make to you works. It is not fat-free, as you will observe but it is darned delicious - be prepared to give the friends to whom you serve this the recipe. They will ask for it. Guaranteed. Oatmeal tomorrow.

This breakfast calls for delicate crepes filled with your favorite ground sausage and topped with a delicious butter sauce.

The sausage crepes will be accompanied by small individual ramekins filled with the freshest fruit. And just to make sure each person's sweet tooth is assuaged, you will have a basket of miniature pecan sticky buns made with puff pastry at hand.

Steaming coffee and chilled juices round out the morning menu.

The best part: this is all do-ahead and can be effortlessly presented on the morning of your fete. But it does take planning.

This is where I come in - I will show you how to pull this off.

Having crepes for breakfast is as unusual as the crepes are delicious. And the starting place for the breakfast is the crepe preparation.

Breakfast Crepes:

Your secret weapon here is the flour you use. Use of Wondra assures a lump free and fast incorporating flour that will help you achieve a delicate crepe. I further like to use a blender to be sure it is all mixed well. The jar of the blender also serves as a convenient pitcher.

Ingredients:

2 large eggs

3/4 cup whole milk

1/2 cup water

1 cup Wondra

3 tablespoons melted butter

Butter, for coating the pan

Preparation:

In a blender, combine all of the ingredients and pulse for 10 seconds.

Place the crepe batter in the refrigerator for 1 hour. This allows the bubbles to subside so the crepes will be less likely to tear during cooking. The batter will keep for up to 48 hours.

Heat a small non-stick pan. Add butter to coat. Pour 1 ounce of batter into the center of the pan and swirl to spread evenly.

Cook for 30 seconds and flip. Cook for another 10 seconds and remove to the cutting board. Lay them out flat so they can cool. Continue until all batter is gone. After they have cooled you can stack them and store in sealable plastic bags in the refrigerator for several days or in the freezer for up to two months. When using frozen crepes, thaw on a rack before gently peeling apart.

Next, the filling

The real trick here is to be sure there are no traces of sausage fat in the mixture.

1 lb ground favorite sausage. Your butcher has some great ones to recommend, but you can also use the cylindrical package from the grocery store.

Cook until brown and pour off ALL the fat- drain and pat dry with paper towels.

Sauté one finely diced green pepper and one finely diced medium yellow onion with one well-drained can of petite diced tomatoes until soft and translucent.

Add sausage and stir in 3 oz package softened diced cream cheese, and 1/2 cup diced Velveeta. (Sounds odd, but it works magnificently.)

Mix. Add 1/4 teaspoon marjoram.

Place 3 tablespoons of the filling down the center of each crepe- on the paler bottom side.

Roll and place seam side down in a 8x12'' baking dish. Cover and chill. Do this a day ahead if you wish. Bring out of the fridge to come to room temperature.

Bake covered with foil at 375 degrees for 40 minutes.

Sauce: While the crepes are coming to temperature, mix 1/2 cup dairy sour cream and 1/4 cup butter until smooth.

Heat on low temperature until incorporated and warm. Drizzle this over the crepes.

Return the crepes to the oven and bake uncovered for five more minutes. Sprinkle with chopped parsley.

Third , the sticky buns

These are made simple by the use of puff pastry from your grocer's freezer. Just be sure to let it thaw in the refrigerator overnight before you begin.

The miniature ones are favored because guests are less reluctant to indulge in a small pastry than a larger one - even though they may end up eating more than one of these.

And while serving butter may seem gilding the lily, some guests will gladly avail themselves of the whipped butter you have on the table.

The whole idea here is to cut the puff pastry into strips, paint them with butter and sprinkle them generously with brown sugar and pecan pieces; sprinkle with cinnamon and roll into a spiral that will fit your miniature muffin tins.

On the bottom of the tins place a tablespoon of a mixture of half brown sugar and half butter with a sprinkle of cinnamon, and top that with perfect pecan halves, rounded side down. Two should do it.

Pre-heat Oven to 375. Bake until golden, approximately 10 minutes.

While rolls are hot, put a cookie sheet on top of the muffin tin and invert the tin so that the rolls are right side up.

Allow to cool for two minutes before transferring to a linen lined serving basket.

Judge Kirkendall is a retired probate judge. He has taught cooking classes for more than 25 years at various cooking schools in the Ann Arbor area. He can be reached at: Judgejnk@yahoo.com.

Published: Thu, Mar 31, 2011

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