It's 2022. Mom doesn't want you to take her to an understaffed restaurant with the kids. She also doesn't want to feed all the mouths in the house and do the dishes. Follow these instructions to make her a delicious brunch at home.
Step 1: While Mom waits for brunch, brew her a cup of coffee. Make it strong: dark roast with a ratio of 5oz water to 1 heaping tablespoon of ground coffee beans. And keep it coming. Serve it with frothed cream on the side and Turbinado sugar. She may want it straight up, but it's nice to have options.
Step 2: Rub her feet. Is there anything better than a foot rub? As a mom, I think not. But use lotion. Otherwise, it feels like a Saint Patrick's Day pinch for not wearing green.
Step 3: Get to work in the kitchen. Follow recipe instructions below.
Let me explain why DIY Mother's Day Brunch is the way to make mom's day this Sunday. Going out to eat in 2022 isn't the same as it was pre-pandemic. There's a staffing shortage- especially in the kitchen. We all are aware of that. That's why my family and I have only gone out to eat maybe a dozen times since restaurants reopened. At least half of those times, we've been seated only to wait a while for a server; longer for drinks; and wondered if the apocalypse will come before the food. Our hyperactive kids (a badge they wear with all my beaming pride: kids are supposed to be active and hyperactive) finished their kids' menu coloring + tic tac toe, are kicking each other under the table, blowing bubbles in their chocolate milk, asking for our iPhones, and whining "hoooooow much longer?" Then, finally, their pancakes arrive. By that point, I, as Mom, am so over it that I don't even want the French Toast in front of me that was supposed to be avocado toast. But if we're dropping "restaurant money," (meaning, funds equivalent to a week's worth of Hello Fresh and a bottle of Rombauer), I murmur a whispering "whatever" under my breath (which is spoken much louder through my facial expressions), and eat the food.
This is not what mothers want on Mother's Day.
Getting back to Step 3, you can make her a delicious breakfast at home with ingredients you may already have on hand. I present to you my fave brekkie: veggie breakfast casserole.
This has been my favorite breakfast for a very long time. Those of you who have have followed me since my early days in video presentation will remember a kitsch cooking show called "BB's Back Burner" circa 2010. It is with great humility that I embed a video here of the step-by-step instructions for this recipe. To be completely honest, I would much rather have just written out the steps for you to whip up this dish and let BB's Back Burner rest in peace, along with Kokomo, God bless her sweet soul. But I know that some of you watch more than you read and a video demo may help you master the recipe for mama. So, for the love of the mother in your household this Mother's Day, I Google searched this old video that I was pretty sure I had deleted from YouTube. As they say about the internet, content lives on somewhere. Ay caramba! With very little digging, I found this cooking demo-- it is cheesy; the words that come out of my mouth are cringe-worthy; my Great Dane was my sidekick (in some episodes, she had speaking lines); and my videographer moonlighted as a wizard on the weekends. But I do love the opening jingle. My dad composed the music, I wrote the lyrics, my friend, Cassie Sanchez, from high school sang it, and my videographer, the wizard himself, recorded the footage. Not all of BB's Back Burner is bad- if you watch the bookends of intro and outro (with sweet Kokomo's bark at the end), it's pretty cute. But if you're watching for recipe inspiration, glean that and try to forgive my freshman one-liners, like "beat those egg whites, like they're a robber." I'm sorry.
10 Egg Whites from large eggs (toss in a few yolks, if you'd like)
12oz lowfat cottage cheese
1 Tablespoon butter
2 cups sliced mushrooms
1 red bell pepper, julienne cut (just means slice it into long, skinny pieces)
1 heaping handful of fresh spinach
1 2.25 ounce can artichoke hearts, drained
1 2.25 ounce can black olives, drained
1 teaspoon baking powder
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup cheese (optional)
1. Preheat oven to 400-degrees
2. In a skillet, saute mushrooms and red bell pepper in butter. Add spinach toward the end of cooking time and stir.
3. In a blender, beat egg whites for about 1-minute. Add cottage cheese. Beat until consistency is smooth. Add flour, baking powder, and salt and beat on low until combined.
4. Pour contents from blender and skillet into a 13"x9"x2" casserole dish, coated with nonstick spray.
5. Stir in artichoke hearts and black olives.
6. Add cheese over the top (optional). You can use any type of cheese. I typically opt for Feta nowadays.
7. Bake, uncovered, for 15-minutes. Reduce heat to 350. Bake for 25-minutes. Pull out of oven and let cool before serving or moving to fridge.
*If making ahead of time, assemble through (6) the day before. Bake (7) on Mother's Day morning.
It feels irreverent to share BB's Back Burner without also sharing the tribute video to Kokomo.
She was quite the sidekick.
A Little About Me-
Brook Benten, M.Ed. is a fitness professional in Austin, TX. She has been a fitness educator, choreographer, spokesperson, and, until July 2020, Executive Director of Healthy Living. Now, primarily answering to "Mom" (pronounced "MOM!"), she freelance writes for Prevention Magazine and keeps this blog to Help Other Mothers Lift the Motherload.