Fighting Fear with Blueberry French Toast

18 years – I remember when 9-11 happened.  My children were young and in school and my husband was traveling for business.  After the children were in bed that night I felt so helpless – so emotionally exhausted yet I knew I was not ready for sleep.  Turning on the TV would just be listening to words – seeing images I had repeatedly absorbed throughout the day.  I wanted to protect my children from a world that these unspeakable things could happen knowing deep in my heart there are only so many things a mother has control of.  So the question came to my mind – “What do you have control over?”  “How can you love your children in this time of uncertainty?”  For me – it was giving them something they enjoyed – something that had a proven track record of happiness.  For me – this would be accomplished in my kitchen.  And so I set about pulling the ingredients out on my counter for Blueberry French Toast – a lovely recipe that sits in refrigerator overnight and is baked in the oven.  In the past the smell of this baking would bring huge smiles to little faces.  I was just hoping that it would remind us that there have been happy times in the past and in faith and hope we could look forward to good times in the future.  So I cut the french bread in small pieces and mixed up the eggs and milk.  Each task was a balm to my soul. I took each piece of bread and dipped it into the wet mixture and placed it in the greased pan.  Perhaps this is how we would heal – one deliberate task of love at a time.  That recipe encouraged me to move at a time where it would be so easy to get stuck in front of our tvs, computers, newspapers for the next new tidbit of a horrific event. Our country doesn’t need people who sit – no, our country needs people who will reach out and start moving with loving actions one person at a time.

Blueberry French Toast
A wonderful breakfast that can be prepped the night before and popped into the oven the next morning.
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  1. 1 Loaf of french bread, sliced in 1/2 inch sliced
  2. 2 Eggs
  3. 1 3/4 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk or Milk of your Choice
  4. 2 Tbsp Sugar or sweetener of choice
  5. 1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
  6. 1 1/2 cup Frozen Blueberries
  7. Crumb Mixture
  8. White Spelt Flour or Flour of your Choice
  9. Brown Sugar
  10. Earth Balance or Butter, chilled
  1. Prepare a 8 X 8 square pan by spraying lighting with PAM
  2. If using flax "egg" see * and mix accordingly
  3. In medium bowl mix milk, sugar, vanilla, egg, and fruit spread until combined
  4. Take each slice of bread and dip both sides into milk mixture. Place in pan until the bottom is covered with a layer of bread.
  5. Spoon 3 Tbsp of milk mixture over bread
  6. Place sliced apples on top
  7. Repeat with another layer of dipped bread
  8. Using a spatual press down on top to pack down
  9. Cover with plastic wrap and let sit 6-8 hours in fridge.
  10. Mix ingredients for crumb mixture in a small blender or food processor.
  11. Preheat oven to 375 degrees.
  12. Remove from refrigerator
  13. Spread blueberries on top
  14. Spread crumb mixture of top
  15. Bake for 35-40 minutes.
  16. Can be eaten out of the oven but it let cool for 15 minutes before trying to cut. It's amazing how much better this cuts if it can cool, sit in refrigerator for several hours and then reheated or served cold as a bread pudding.
  17. May be topped with powdered sugar, whipped soy or dairy cream.
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Pretzel Treats

This is a great project for kids.  They can help unwrap the Hershey Kisses and sort the colors of the M&M’s.  I used the yellow and orange ones for the fall season but the colors and flavors of both Hershey Kisses and M&M’s are endless and this treat is versatile for many holidays.  Here is another great thing about this treat – gluten free pretzels can be used.

Pretzel Treats

Pretzel Treats (Gluten Free)
A versatile treat that can meet any theme that is perfect for children to be involved in during the preparation.
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  1. Small Pretzels (To make Gluten Free - use a gluten-free pretzel) If you can find them in a circle - great but any small pretzel shape will work.
  2. M&M's
  3. Hershey Kisses, unwrapped
  1. Unwrap Hershey Kisses
  2. Sort M&M’s by color, optional
  3. Line a Cookie Sheet with a piece of parchment paper
  4. Place the pretzels on the cookie sheet. They can touch each other.
  5. Heat oven to 225 degrees
  6. Place a Hershey Kiss in the middle of each pretzel.
  7. When all pretzels have a Kiss in them, place cookie sheet into oven for 3-4 minutes, just until chocolate is pliable. Every oven is different but this is not the time to multitask – stay close to the oven.
  8. Remove cookie sheet from oven.
  9. Let cool for a few minutes and then while chocolate is still warm, place M&M in the center of the chocolate.
  10. Let cool on the counter or if you need a little quicker set pan in refrigerator or freezer.
Deliciously Inspired
I used these Gluten Free Pretzels.. Pretzel Treats - Gluten Free


Monster Cookies

This recipe has been a favorite in our family for many years.  Because it is an oat based recipe it is good for those with gluten sensitivities.  Get the kids involved in the kitchen.  After they squeeze the dough together they will soon have monster hands.   M&Ms come in all different colors for the seasons giving many options.  We used this recipe as wedding favors for my daughter and son-in-law’s special day.

Monster Cookies 2

Monster Cookies
Yields 60
A versatile gluten free cookie which can be coordinated for holidays and special occasions by the color(s) of M&M candies chosen.
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Cook Time
12 min
Cook Time
12 min
  1. 3 Eggs
  2. 2 cups Brown Sugar
  3. 1 cup Granulated Sugar
  4. 2 tsp Baking soda
  5. 1 cup Butter - Softened
  6. 1 1/2 cup Creamy Peanut Butter
  7. 4 1/2 cups Oatmeal (Quaker Old Fashioned) or Gluten Free Oats (for high gluten sensitivity)
  8. 1 1/2 cup M&M’s
  9. 1 1/2 cup Chocolate Chips
  1. Heat oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Combine all ingredients and mix well.
  3. Line cookie sheet with parchment paper.
  4. Using a small cookie scoop or spoon, form balls about the size of ping pong balls and flatten lightly with fork.
  5. Bake for 10-12 minutes. Cool on cooling rack.
  6. Makes 4-5 dozen cookies
  7. Note: Raisins, dried fruit and nuts can be added into dough.
  1. The recipe freezes beautifully.
Deliciously Inspired
Prepping the cookies by rolling into balls and placing on a parchment lined cookie sheet.

Monster Cookies 1