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Video: Giada cooks up two favorite holiday breakfasts

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    >>> this morning on cooking with giada. two of the favorite holiday breakfasts foods. "today" contributor in chief --

    >> i am.

    >> chef is here to show us how to make baked french toast and ricotta pound cake . you have to make breakfast if people are coming to visit.

    >> david pretouched the bread.

    >> i don't know that i want to make this anymore. we are going to start with the baked french toast . i'm going to separate the two of you otherwise nothing is going to happen.

    >> no, this way. savannah -- no, you stay here. you two are separated now. okay. so you're going to cut the hala. you fondled the hala. you're going to cut the hala.

    >> how do you want me to cut?

    >> cube it just like that. and you are going to butter the dish. the butter is right there.

    >> don't touch it with your beautiful little hands .

    >> okay.

    >> it's nice and soft. brush it like a paper. i told you that you could do it. sorry so delightful. look at those little cubes. he is heat ooeting it, by the w way, as he is doing it. the whole idea of french toast , you can use any leftover bread. you're done. i said half of it.

    >> okay.

    >> so if it's fresh and soft like this, throw it in the oven at 300 degrees to dry it out. otherwise, let it dry out.

    >> right, okay.

    >> it gets like this. and this is what you want. it absorbs what you're going to add to t otherwise this will fall apart and become a big mess. six eggs right here. i didn't say this was light, by the way. that's why it's breakfast tleechlt cups of whole milk. milk is important. you can do the whisking now.

    >> i did the sides. i made a judgment call. was that right?

    >> good. it all comes out easily.

    >> how many eggs did you say?

    >> six. this will feed a big family. you may have leftover.

    >> is this maple syrup ?

    >> maple syrup .

    >> you put it in the batter?

    >> it make it is a little more holiday like in flavor.

    >> make sure you got enough of your hair in there.

    >> would teaspoons of cinnamon. touch it with your fingers? there you go. i thought you might want to taste it. and a little bit of salt to balance out the flavors. little zest?

    >> of the lemon. there you go. the best way is to hold it like this and move this up and down. not really. did you?

    >> little workman's comp issue.

    >> oh, no.

    >> move that around. add the bread.

    >> there you go. there you go.

    >> this is almost like a --

    >> you add the fresh blueberries?

    >> all of them?

    >> my daughter loves blueberries. when you have kids you get a lot of blueberries, lot of bananas. add whatever fruit you like.

    >> like a strata almost but not.

    >> we're both 90210 kids.

    >> i didn't grow up in beverly hills . i'm a valley boy, san fernando valley .

    >> we're both california kids.

    >> you want to pour it in here.

    >> be careful, savannah, little delicate.

    >> gently, yes. perfect.

    >> we've got one minute. hur hur.

    >> i that's it? oh, my gosh. cinnamon, sugar, bake it at 350. it looks like that. so, ready? orange pound cake . you have a stick of butter that's softened. cheese and sugar, mix this all together. add the eggs. no ala. eggs and you can break the last one. add a little cinnamon -- little vanilla extract i mean. okay. and then orange and a little amaretto, little almond flavor. the trick is to add the dry ingredients slowly so they incorporate to get a nice light.

    >> and for this pound cake to get a nice, light texture i use cake flour instead of all purpose flour. it's a fine flour. little bit of at a time and let it --

    >> gentle, gentle.

    >> easy. easy.

    >> then you pour it in this mold and bake it for 45 minutes. you guys have been a really good team. cooking of savannah and david were perfect.

    >> i think you were a little aggressive with this flour but okay.

    >> you bake it, want to let it sit in this pan for 10 minutes before you unmold it so it settles and doesn't break on you.

TODAY recipes
updated 12/20/2012 3:26:14 PM ET 2012-12-20T20:26:14

Recipe: French toast with blueberries

  • Butter for greasing
  • 6 eggs
  • 3 cups milk
  • 3/4 cup maplesyrup, plus extra for serving
  • 2 teaspoons ground cinnamon, plus 1 tablespoon
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 3 1-inch thick slices (8 ounces) day-old challah or sourdough bread, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 cups (12 ounces) fresh or frozen, thawed, and drained blueberries
  • 3 tablespoons sugar

Place an oven rack in the middle of the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Butter a 9-by-13-inch baking dish. Set aside.

In a large bowl, beat the eggs until frothy. Add the milk, maple syrup, cinnamon, salt, and lemon zest. Add the bread cubes and mix until coated. Stir in the blueberries. Pour the mixture into the prepared baking dish.

In a small bowl, mix together the remaining cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle the cinnamon sugar over the egg mixture in an even layer. Bake for 40 to 45 minutes until the top is golden and the filling is set.

Spoon onto serving plates and drizzle with maple syrup.

Serving Size

4-6 servings

Recipe: Ricotta orange pound cake with strawberries

  • 1 1/2 cups cake flour
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) butter room temperature, plus more to grease the baking pan
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk ricotta cheese
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar, plus 1 tablespoon
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 orange, zested
  • 2 tablespoons Amaretto
  • Powdered sugar, for dusting
  • 1 pint strawberries, hulled and quartered or 3 oranges, cut into supremes

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Grease a 9 by 5 by 3-inch loaf pan with butter. In a medium bowl combine the flour, baking powder, and salt. Stir to combine.

Using an electric mixer cream together the butter, ricotta and sugar until light and fluffy, about 3 minutes. With the machine running, add the eggs 1 at a time. Add the vanilla, orange zest and Amaretto until combined. Add the dry ingredients, a small amount at a time, until just incorporated.

Pour the mixture into the prepared pan and bake until a toothpick comes out clean and the cake is beginning to pull away from thesides of the pan, about 45 to 50 minutes. Let the cake cool in the pan for 10 minutes then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Using a mesh sieve dust cooled cake with powdered sugar.

Meanwhile, place the strawberries (or orange supremes) in a small bowl with the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar. Let sit until the juices have pooled around the strawberries.

To serve, slice the cake and serve with a spoonful of strawberries and their juices over the top of the cake.

Serving Size

6-8 servings

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