This is Lynne today. I’m Cindy’s sister-in-law. She is on vacation, so I’m filling in. And because of the holidays, this column will be shorter and more casual.
I’m kind of known for making cinnamon rolls. Except I make a variety of flavors, including savory ones, so I call them rollers instead. (I know, rollers is also slang for something else. It’s a little embarrassing, but what can I say?)
I’m always looking for new roller ideas, so I was quite thrilled when I found three brand-new varieties last week. I was determined to experiment with them all:Sweet Potato Cardamom Buns with Pecans* and Orange
(*The recipe actually called for pistachios, but I changed it to pecans. I did say, ‘experiment,’ after all.)
That meant I made three dozen rollers. Sheesh! When our eight kids were at home, that wouldn’t have been a problem. But now it’s just my husband and myself, and our low-carb diets do not allow us to eat 36 rollers in a year, much less a week. I gave some away, and encouraged my daughter and her boyfriend to eat several. But there were still a lot left.
Recently, we had the Quad Cities Business Beat Livecast with Jenny Mills from the Breadery. (Do watch, it’s a fun Livecast!) Mills commented that the goods she makes are meant to be eaten - not sit on a shelf indefinitely. That resonated with me, my rollers are like that, too. They’re meant to be eaten because they get stale quickly.
So, here I am with a bunch of cinnamon rolls that are not going to last forever. What to do?
I have a recipe for Overnight Pumpkin French Toast Casserole. Aha! I decided to use the leftover cinnamon rolls and make something roughly like that.
When I looked at the recipe, I immediately saw changes I would make. First of all, some of the rollers were made with sweet potato, not pumpkin. So, I substituted sweet potato. It called for 8 eggs, but I had 11 eggs left in the crate, and a lot of cinnamon rolls. So, I used 11 eggs instead. And there are a lot of spices which I didn’t need, since the rollers already had that covered. Here’s my recipe complete with notes, you may have to do some adaptations of your own.
Overnight Roller Breakfast Dish
12 Leftover Rollers (sweet cinnamon rolls)
12 oz. (1 ½ pkg) cream cheese, cut into cubes (use less if you prefer or only have one package)
11 large eggs (you might as well use a dozen)
1 can evaporated milk
1 cup sweet potatoes, cooked and thoroughly mashed
Maple syrup, warmed (for serving)
1. Completely cover a deep 13x9” pan with non-stick spray.
2. Break up rollers into chunks. I broke mine up into roughly inch-sized pieces.
3. Make one layer, using half the roller pieces, on the bottom of the pan.
4. Scatter the cream cheese cubes over the layer of roller pieces.
5. Scatter the rest of the roller pieces over the top of the cream cheese.
6. In a mixer, food processor or blender, combine the eggs, evaporated milk and sweet potatoes, until you have a creamy mixture.
7. Pour over the layers in the baking dish. Cover with foil.
8. Place in a refrigerator overnight. (True story: Our refrigerator was really full, so we simply put it outside on a table on our porch. Since it showed that night, it was no problem!)
9. The next morning, preheat the oven to 350º. Cook until the custard is entirely firm. It took ours almost an hour and a half, but it was pretty full.
10. Serve warm with maple syrup. If you like, add a pat of butter to the top, and make sure your syrup is warm.
11. To reheat, cut a piece and put it on a microwave-safe plate. Add butter and maple syrup if you like. Place it in the microwave with a damp paper towel alongside the plate. (The damp paper towel helps keep the bread parts from becoming hard and chewy.) Heat for 20-30 seconds, or until warm, but not hot.
My point here is not to say, “Go forth and bake Overnight Roller Breakfast Dish” although you may if you like. The point is to illustrate that you can take what you have in your refrigerator and cupboard and make something new from it. That’s how we were able to feed our family of 10 on $75 per week for years and years.
1. You can almost always use something you have on hand to make something new.
2. Don’t worry about following all recipes exactly. If you only have 8 eggs, use that instead of 12. Maybe use whipping cream instead of evaporated milk. Whatever it takes.
3. Don’t add things you don’t need to. I left out the spices, pecans, sugar and extra milk. That keeps it simple and quick.
4. Take pictures and notes. That way you’ll know what worked and didn’t, and what you’ll change next time.
5. Never stop creating, even in the kitchen!
This Week's Ads
The stores did come out with new ads, by the way, but they are not as large as they normally are. I think of them as mini-ads, but you probably don’t need to do much shopping anyway! Here are the highlights!
New York Strip steaks, boneless $4.97 lb.
Honeycrisp apples: $.97 lb.
Pork Tenderloin, boneless, BOGO
Chicken Drumsticks or Thighs, bone-in, Fresh Heritage Farm $.99 lb.
4 day Digital Sale, December 27 - December 30 only: Frozen DiGiorno, California Pizza Kitchen or Pizzeria Pizza $2.99
Kroger Bacon $2.99 each
Buy 5 or More, Save $1 each:
Cheetos or Fritos
Philadelphia Cream Cheese Spread
Red Bull 4 pack
Quaker Instant Oatmeal, Dannon Yogurt 4-6 ct, Ocean Spray Craisins
Pepperidge Farm Goldfish 6-6.8 oz.
32 oz. Kroger cheese or Cracker cuts
London Broil or Top Round Roasts, boneless $1.97 lb.
Chicken Breasts B/S $1.47 lb.
Raspberries or blueberries, 6 oz. $.97
Chunk, shredded, sliced cheese, 6-8 oz., generic $.74 each with Just for U Digital offer
1 Dozen Eggs, FREE, with Just for U reward
Ribeye or T-bone steaks, $6.99 lb.
Pork Loin Roasts or Chops, $2.99 lb.
Gala Apples or Bartlett Pears $.99 lb.
Bell Peppers, red, yellow or orange $.99 lb.
Blueberries 18 oz. Package/$1.98
All-Natural Pork BOGO
Bacon $4.99 lb.
Bulk Colby Jack or Mild Cheddar: $3.99 lb.
Derivative Recipes - this should get you started!
Some recipes our family has used with leftover ham include scalloped potatoes and ham; mixed bean or split pea soup (with the hambone), Monte Cristo sandwiches. Here are a few more:
For this, you’ll have to skip the braising step, and make a sauce and cook your beef in it.
Keep cooking, stay creative and enjoy!