Sunday, August 25, 2013

Breakfast Crostini with French Toast Style Broccoli Stalks, Gorgonzola, Maple Syrup, Tarragon and Quail Eggs

We appear to have a new addition(s) to the family.

Some kids tote around dolls or stuffed animals or blankets as companions through this big old world of ours. Max, having no concerns about portability, has this.  An owl-shaped suitcase (usually empty, but occasionally an elephant-shaped lunch box makes its way in there).  And we want to bring it EVERYWHERE.  Going to bed?  The owl suitcase needs to get tucked in as well!  Heading to mom and dad's room at 2 am for some early morning cuddles?  Be sure to bring along the suitcase! Going stargazing? God forbid the owl doesn't get to see the moon as well! Distress, inevitably, ensues when the little guy is told that he cannot bring along the suitcase.

And in addition to the owl, our family has also welcomed a new breakfast item into the fold - french-toast style broccoli stalks.  We, as a unit, were previously not super interested in french toast.  Good in theory, but soggy in practice.  Broccoli stalks, after a nice soak in some eggs and maple syrup, browned in some butter, then coated in a sprinkling of powdered sugar, mimic french toast, without the problems of the bread.

And after chowing down on a handful of these stalks, we decided their sweetness would combine perfectly with the strong Gorgonzola cheese and quail eggs we were looking to use in a breakfast crostini.  Add a little bit of maple syrup and a liberal amount of tarragon, and this is literally one of the best things we've ever tasted.  

New additions can be glorious things.  Though it remains to be seen what this owl suitcase is bringing to the table.

1 baguette, sliced
extra virgin olive oil
kosher salt
freshly ground black pepper

2 large broccoli stalks (outside of the stalks removed), sliced, then halved to fit on a crostini
2 eggs
1 tablespoon maple syrup
pat of butter, for skillet
powdered sugar, for sprinkling

Gorgonzola cheese
french-toast style broccoli stalks
good quality maple syrup
quail eggs, fried in a skillet with butter
torn tarragon leaves

Heat oven to 375. Place the baguette slices on a baking sheet (I used a Silpat to line mine). Pour olive oil in a bowl, and brush the oil on each slice. Sprinkle a bit of salt and pepper on each. Bake for 8-10 minutes or until golden-brown.

Beat the eggs with the syrup.  Heat a cast iron skillet over high heat; add butter.  Soak the slices of stalks in the egg and syrup mixture.  Place in skillet on high heat.  Brown one side, drizzling some egg mixture on top of the stalks with a chopstick before flipping over to brown the other side.  Flip to brown the other side. Sprinkle the french-toast style stalks with powdered sugar.

Assemble the breakfast crostini by adding a generous layer of Gorgonzola to each baked baguette slice.  Then add a french-toast style stalk to each one.  Using a chopstick, drizzle a bit of maple syrup on top of each stalk.

To fry the quail egg, heat a skillet to medium low.  Add some unsalted butter to the pan and let it melt.  Separate most of the white from the yolk of the quail egg by carefully cutting off the top half of the egg using a sharp knife.  Be careful not to puncture the yolk.  Pour out as much of the white into the pan as you can until you're left with a yolk and a bit of white.  Drop this onto the pan and cook just until the white stops being translucent.  Should only be 10-20 seconds.  Use a spatula to remove from the pan and place onto the crostini.

Finish with a sprinkling of torn tarragon leaves.


  1. French toast broccoli??? You are some kind of crazy, mad genius. YUM

    And that owl suitcase is totally adorable. I like Max's style.

  2. Mmm I love anything with gorgonzola cheese! This whole thing is just awesome!

  3. Crostinis are my absolute favourite, love this idea :D

    Choc Chip Uru

  4. Ooh, how special using quail eggs!

  5. It is amazing how kids are attached to the most weird things. And I am attached to these broccoli and the quail eggs!

  6. Oh my lordy. I have never seen French toast look this enticing!!

  7. Great use of broccoli stalks! And with quail eggs and blue cheese...these crostini are irresistible, Jenn.

  8. What an inventive all works so beautifully together. I had to giggle at Max. Nick had a Pooh bear that went everywhere with him till first grade...I can totally related to the attachment.

  9. Oh my goodness, what an inviting dish. And, the quail egg is precious.


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