eating lately: breakfast edition

Like...everyone...we like to eat.  During our first stint in Spain, we stuck to a rotation of about ten fairly basic recipes for dinner, the same cereal every morning, and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches for lunch.  This year, however, we've really been mixing it up and last year's routine is but a faint memory.  This is how it works: I plan our menus each Friday for the upcoming week, we go grocery shopping together on Sundays, and Danny usually does about 99% of the cooking on weekdays (we do it together over the weekends).   As far as what we eat goes, I've been drawing inspiration from places we've traveled, dishes we enjoyed when we were in the US but found difficult to cook last year, and, like many modern folks today, Pinterest.  

I used to enjoy doing these posts when we lived in Colorado and I wrote about little else on my blog besides ordinary life, trips we took, and sometimes, like I'm doing now, new recipes we tried and liked.  So, to break up the constant barrage of posts about our French road trip: food.  To be more precise, the latest and greatest breakfast food (I was going to do this post on everything: breakfast, dessert, actual food, etc., but it just got to be a monstrosity, so I'm saving the rest for later) from the last nine months we've been here, with a few photos.  The photos aren't necessarily of the best things we've made, so don't be fooled, but just of the foods we thought to take a photo of for some reason or another, okay?  So without further ado...

Yeast Free Vegan Cinnamon Buns - We've made these a couple of times now, and while we had a penchant for making cinnamon rolls while in Colorado, here in Spain we wanted a recipe without yeast and something that would just overall be easy (i.e. we had no patience for buns that needed to rise).  Up until a couple of months ago, we'd wake up on Saturday mornings knowing we didn't want to eat oatmeal like we do on weekdays but by the time we searched the internet for a recipe, went to the store, and made breakfast, it was practically lunchtime.  Insert easy (but satisfying) recipes like this one.

Quinoa Superfood Breakfast Skillet - If the cinnamon rolls are easy, then this is nothing, as long as you can make quinoa.  Truly.  We really love this breakfast - it's nice for having people over, for just the two of us, as leftovers, with fresh or frozen fruit - it's versatile and of course, delicious.  

Fluffy Flourless Banana Smoothie Pancakes - We first made these when we were trying to find 'special' breakfast options that didn't have any sugar in them but were still vegan.  It can be tricky, but we omitted the maple syrup from these and found them to be a good option.  We found that they weren't necessarily fluffy - perhaps solid would be a better word - but that could be because we left out the maple syrup.  Hard to say.  

Vegan Banana Bread - Another recipe we chose because there was no added sugar, and it was good!  I'm sure it's just our oven, but we had to add about 30 minutes to the cooking time to get it to be baked all the way through.  Oh and we used walnuts instead of dried apricots...and I'm putting this in the breakfast section because, this is embarrassing, but, we cut the bread in half and each ate the entire loaf for breakfast.  

Baked Banana French Toast - So, to be fair, this isn't a brand new recipe for us, but when we first made it in Spain it had been about three years since we'd last made it.  And then we made it over and over in an effort to get it just right.  The banana, the coconut milk, the fact that it's baked, plus the syrup on top just before serving - it's pretty much perfection once you get it down.  

Vegan Breakfast Burrito - These were fantastic!  Breakfast burritos are tricky when you take out the usual suspects: egg, all types of meat, cheese, and thus we've never attempted a fully vegan version that I can recall.  The recipe really intimidated me, but it's actually quite manageable, and we ended up with lots of ingredients - we had what I would consider 'standard' size tortillas and I was able to have two burritos and Danny had four, with extra potatoes and rice leftover.  

Breakfast Quinoa Rice Pudding - For most of my life I've been prejudiced against rice pudding for pretty much no good reason, but I'm so glad that that's changed!  Now whenever I see it on the menu somewhere I'm desperate to try it (although I never do, as we rarely order dessert, and it's so simple to make at home!).  This recipe has the easiest ingredients - I don't think we had to buy anything special for it - and while we didn't have anything extra around the house for toppings the first time we made it, it's even better with chopped almonds and sliced bananas on top.  

Vegan Peanut Butter Granola -  I think we have both had this on our minds ever since we made it.  It was AMAZING.  I tried not to gush about it at the time because Danny was going on and on and if we both did, then things might have gotten out of control, we would have decided to make it in big batches and eat it for breakfast everyday...and while that sounds like the best thing ever, with the cost (and quality) of peanut butter in Spain, it's just not really feasible.  Someone had to maintain their composure.  But here I can say: Do not be afraid of making granola.  It is actually easy!  This was our first try!  We did it, and we don't know much about anything, really!  And this granola is the tastiest.  (We ate it in bowls with Greek yogurt and blueberries, just in case you're curious.)

Carrot Cake Baked Oatmeal - This doesn't really look like the most beautiful recipe, but trust me, it's great.  We've gotten really into baked oatmeals in recent days because they're tasty hot out of the oven and pretty good cold from the fridge as leftovers too (even better, if you ask Danny).  We always have trouble finishing up entire bags of carrots, and I support veggies no matter the time of day, so combine that with a delicious and easy-to-make breakfast?  Can't go wrong.

Fruity Baked Oatmeal with Crunchy Cinnamon Almond Topping - Another baked oatmeal, another winner.  This one has a banana, an apple, and raisins in it, and like the title infers, a really tasty topping.  As sometimes happens with us...we ate almost the entire dish of this in one sitting.  

Mushroom Melt Breakfast Sandwich with Cashew Sweet Potatoes - I picked this recipe with Danny in mind, for sure.  Even though we stick to a largely vegan/vegetarian diet these days, he still seems to have a certain fondness for places like McDonald's, Burger King, and Taco Bell.  I don't think that if given the choice he really wants to eat there, he just associates those places with good memories and nostalgia...anyways, I thought that he would appreciate this sandwich as it's a bit reminiscent of certain breakfast offerings at McDonald's.  Sure enough, he did - we both did! - although we did make a few changes out of necessity and choice.  We used whatever vegan chorizo we could find at our local biological store, we skipped the vegan cheese, we used bread (me) and sandwich thins (Danny), and we improvised on the sweet potatoes as the link leading to that recipe (the sandwich and potatoes are two different recipes) no longer works, but it was all really delicious!  

One Bowl Vegan Banana Bread - Not a very sweet bread, and like the one I mentioned earlier, it took a long time to bake (I guessing it's just our oven though), but it was good.  I can't remember ever not liking a recipe from Oh She Glows (a blog), and this was just another to add to our list of good ones we'd make again...especially with a more reliable oven. ;)

Simple Sweet Scones - Perhaps the recipe on this list that we've made the most frequently...we made these scones for the first time at the beginning of October, fell in love with their homemade goodness (and the jam and cream on top, of course, that's absolutely essential), and have made them for friends and family, and okay, ourselves for no good reason other than that they're delicious ever since.  We hadn't had them for quite a while, but I requested them for my birthday recently and they were as good as I remembered - Danny's really got the method down on these!