Breakfasts on the weekends are often the best meal of the day here at cabinorganic. If it’s just me, I’ll enjoy a whole grain hot cereal with some dried fruit thrown in. When a friend is here, I put a little more time and effort into the weekend meals. It is also nice to have someone to try out my new recipes on! This morning we had poached local organic free-range eggs (from Dreamin’ Green Farm) and some locally-raised bacon, along with a Wild Berry Salad made with all wild ingredients or produce from our garden (not including the toasted almonds). The Potted Saffron Brioche on the side (with Swamp Red Currant Jelly) gave the meal a creative and decadent twist. The wild berries in the salad were so fresh that we couldn’t resist cracking open a bottle of Saignee, a fruity Canadian rose wine that we picked up at the Silk Scarf Winery (highly recommended!) on our recent trip to Summerland, BC. (…where we stayed in a B&B at a working vineyard. But that’s another story…).
Rich and buttery, brioche is the perfect sweet bread for breakfast. The use of tiny flowerpots makes a nice presentation but be sure to prepare them before baking.
Potted Saffron Brioche
Preparing the Pots
I had some tiny little terra cotta pots left over from a preschool craft (back when I was teaching) just waiting for a special project. In my newest purchased cookbook, World Breads: From Pain to Paratha by Paul Gayler, I finally found the perfect use for them and a perfect repurposing idea! You can find these tiny pots at your local craft store.
To prepare the flowerpots for baking, wipe them thoroughly with a damp cloth. Oil them generously inside and out and put them in a 275 degree (F) oven for 30 minutes to season. Remove and cool. Then repeat this process twice more. This will prevent the molds from cracking while baking.
The Saffron Brioche
1/3 cup milk
pinch of saffron
1-1/2 teaspoon active dry yeast (or 1/2 oz fresh)
3/4 cup butter, softened
2 teaspoons superfine sugar
3 cups unbleached organic white bread flour
1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
1 egg yolk mixed with 1 tablespoon of milk, to glaze
- Heat the milk with the saffron for 2 minutes, cool to lukewarm, then add the yeast, salt, and eggs. Add 2 of the 3 cups of flour, mixing well with a wooden spoon.
- In a large mixer, cream the butter and sugar until smooth and fluffy. Incorporate this into the flour mixture, adding the final 1 cup of flour.
- Transfer dough to electric mixer bowl and beat with dough hook for 3-4 minutes, until smooth and pliable.
- Cover the bowl with a damp cloth and let rise in a warm place (or in your oven at the proof setting) for 1-1/2 hour or until the dough has doubled in size.
- Punch down the dough, cover with oiled plastic wrap and place in the refrigerator overnight. (The dough will stiffen overnight.)
- Turn the dough onto a lightly floured surface and divide evenly into 16 small balls. Place each of the balls into a lightly greased, prepared flowerpot lined with parchment paper (or in your brioche cups or muffin stoneware). Place the molds on a large baking sheet, cover and leave in a warm place to rise for about 1 hour.
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees (F). Brush the glaze over the top of the brioches. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until golden brown. Place on a cooling rack. Yield: 16 brioche.
Note: this dough can be baked in a loaf pan or shaped into small rolls.
Wild Berry Salad
Use your freshest ingredients from the garden. The sweet grated beet balances the tartness from the berries and the lemon juice. The almonds add a pleasant, toasty crunch.
1 head red lettuce
half of a medium red onion, thinly slinced
1 medium beet, peeled and grated
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons raspberry vinegarette
juice of half lemon
salt and pepper (to taste)
1/4 cup sliced almonds, toasted
1 cup wild berries (I used a mixture of Swamp Red Currants, Northern Black Currants, Canada Gooseberries, Saskatoons berries, wild strawberries and raspberries.
- Wash the lettuce and tear into small pieces.
- Add lettuce, onion, beet and 3/4 of the berries to the bowl.
- In a separate bowl, mix the olive oil, vinegar, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Add this to the lettuce mixture and toss.
- Top the salad with the toasted almonds and the remaining /4 cup berries.
Enjoy and happy, mindful eating!