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The Breakfast Challenge – French Toast with Honey Balsamic Glazed Strawberries

It’s unusual spring weather this year.  Much cooler and wetter than normal, the result of another La Ninã pattern in the Pacific and positive dipole in the Indian Ocean.  It’s perfect weather for slugs and snails.  Here I am with the best strawberry patch for a few years, the reward for getting it together to pot up runners in midsummer last year, replant them in a well composted spot last autumn, and mulch them heavily in early spring.  And it has to go and be perfect slug weather.  Not fair!

Each morning early I’ve been picking strawberries, half for the chooks, slugs and all, and half for me.  Luckily half is as many as we can eat, but it does seem very decadent for the chooks to be getting a punnet of strawberries a day! I’m thinking I should put out some beer-traps.

The Recipe:

Use an egg beater to beat one small egg per person with just a little bit of milk.

Dip slices of good bread in the egg mix and  fry in a little butter or macadamia oil until they are crispy golden.

While the french toast is cooking, hull and halve the strawberries and put them in a bowl with just a teaspoon per person of honey and a teaspoon of balsamic vinegar. (Maybe I am weird, but I like a grating of black pepper too. )   Toss through to coat the strawberries.

As soon as the toast comes out, turn the heat off and while the pan is still hot, toss in the strawberries marinade and all.  Cook for just half a minute or so, just to warm and glaze the strawberries, then tip them out onto the toast.

Serve with a dollop of plain yoghurt.

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(The Breakfast Cereal Challenge is my 2011 challenge – a year’s worth of breakfast recipes based on in-season ingredients, that are quick and easy enough to be a real option for weekdays, and that are preferable, in nutrition, ethics, and taste,  to the overpackaged, overpriced, mostly empty packets of junk food marketed as “cereal” .The Muesli Bar Challenge was my 2010 Challenge.)

{ 6 comments… add one }
  • brenda November 5, 2011, 5:48 am

    Linda, do you have any luck with crushed eggshells to deter the slugs? I save all mine, let them dry, crush and sprinkle a swath of them all around the edges of sidewalks and patio. I hardly ever see a slug trail anymore. However, I’ve heard there are some parts of the country where the slugs are either extra hardy or sneaky, and this method has little impact. Do you get a good success rate with the beer traps?

    brenda from arkansas

  • Lorna November 6, 2011, 4:23 am

    Hello, I’m new to your blog (I heard about you on the Greening of Gavin) and am enjoying working my way through your archives.
    I was wondering if you’ve ever tried diatomaceous earth in your garden to deter slugs (and other unwanted critters)? Supposedly it does not harm the earthworms, but I’m not sure about that and was wondering if you had any experience with it. I’ll be starting gardens for the first time in many years this spring in North America, and am looking to build an arsenal of environmentally friendly ways to keep pests at bay!
    Thank you for your blog. I do appreciate when people share their experiences and knowledge.

  • Linda November 6, 2011, 9:35 am

    Two days of fine warm weather in a row, and this morning I picked a nice bowlful of strawberries for us and not a one for the chooks (which I’m more happy about than they are). I’ll shall put a beer trap out tonight though, so I’ll post some photos of it and how it goes over the week. I’ve tried lots of pest management methods over the years, diatomaceous earth among them. It works, and like you Lorna I’ve read the research and decided it was safe enough to try. I didn’t stick with it though. A method has to not just work, but be worth the cost and effort to stick for me. I manage gardening (and housework) on the principle of not doing anything I can get away with. Mostly cycling the chooks through the beds every year to clean them up and break breeding cycles of pests, and encouraging lots of frogs, lizards, birds etc does the trick. If I were getting no strawberries, or not enough, I’d have to decide whether the simpler solution was planting more or trying to outsmart the pests. As it is the chooks are getting more than I would like, but we’re still getting enough to eat, so I’ll give the beer trap a go – it’s worked well for me in the past. And the eggshells sounds like an interesting idea – I have a tin of eggshells in the oven – I bake them to dry them and usually just add them to the compost, but sprinkling around the strawberries sounds like a good idea.

  • Jode November 6, 2011, 12:38 pm

    I’m about to try the eggshells and beer traps too, having an awful time with big fat slugs! My chooks are getting far to much fruit/veg at moment due to cabbage moth caterpillers and slugs!
    That recipe looks very yum…now just the time to actually sit and have breakfast!!
    Hope your weekend is going well.
    Jode

  • Lisa November 6, 2011, 1:48 pm

    Thankfully I am yet to have slugs but I am sure that is a situation that won’t last! Thanks for the recipe we just went out to a local farm and picked about 3 kgs so that will make a yummy breakfast treat!

  • kim November 6, 2011, 5:21 pm

    I love your recipes, Linda. You often put together flavours that I would never ordinarily try and yet they do work together. thankyou for taking me out of my comfort zone.

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