Ricotta Toast



Let’s talk about toast. I mean, is there anything better than stepping into the kitchen first thing the morning and taking in those first two aromas that hit you? You know what I’m talking about.

“The smell of coffee and toasted bread”  Such a welcoming scent, that I believe is truly universal.

My earliest recollections of toast were my mom wanting to make sure I had something in my tummy before I left to catch the school bus in the morning. Many times it was a slice of Roman Meal bread spread with butter and a little swirl of jam. Then there was my favorite when she would make me a cinnamon toast (melted butter with cinnamon & sugar) She would wrap it in a napkin and out the door, I went.

Over the course of the last four years, I’ve come to appreciate that toast comes in many forms and styles. Today I’d like to share with a version that includes Ricotta cheese as the base key ingredient.

My first exposure to this version of Toast was five years ago when I was visiting Parma Italy. We went out for breakfast I started with my usual cup of coffee and the waitress brought over a simple piece of toasted ciabatta bread smothered with fresh ricotta cheese drizzled with a little honey and fresh wild berries on top. The combination of these very simple ingredients (bread, cheese, honey & berries) were simply unforgettable.

Today I share with you four of my very favorite ricotta toasts. You can really add any toppings you like on top of Ricotta. Pretty much any preserve tastes amazing so feel free experiment and add your own twist. Yes, take a moment in the morning to “Get your happy toast dance on and try”…………Your tummy will thank you for it.




Ricotta Toast
Recipe type: Breakfast
  • Chocolate Cinnamon Toast
  • ⅓ cup whole-milk ricotta
  • ¼ teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 teaspoon finely grated chocolate
  • ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
  • Combine Ricotta with vanilla and mix with a fork, spread on top of a slice of toasted ciabatta spread Ricotta cheese mixture on toast and sprinkle with chocolate shavings and cinnamon.
  • Strawberry-Basil & Chocolate Toast
  • ⅓ cup whole-milk ricotta
  • 4 to 5 thinly sliced fresh strawberries
  • A drizzle of Chocolate syrup
  • 1 basil leaf chopped (for garnish)
  • Combine Ricotta with vanilla and mix with a fork, spread on top of a slice of toasted ciabatta spread Ricotta cheese mixture on toast. Add sliced strawberries and drizzle with chocolate syrup, garnish with fresh basil.
  • Nectarine & Honey Toast
  • ⅓ cup whole-milk ricotta
  • 4 to 5 thinly sliced fresh nectarines
  • A drizzle of honey
  • A sprinkling of Pine Nuts (Optional)
  • Combine Ricotta with vanilla and mix with a fork, spread on top of a slice of toasted ciabatta spread Ricotta cheese mixture on toast. Add sliced nectarines and drizzle with honey, garnish with fresh pine nuts.
  • Thyme Honey & Pine Nut Toast
  • ⅓ cup whole-milk ricotta
  • 1 Sprig of fresh thyme leaves
  • A drizzle of honey
  • A sprinkling of Pine Nuts (Optional)
  • Combine Ricotta with vanilla and mix with a fork, spread on top of a slice of toasted ciabatta spread Ricotta cheese mixture on toast. Add thyme leaves and drizzle with honey, garnish with fresh pine nuts.

Dutch Pancake




The summer before I was set to start my senior year in high school, I took on my very first job as a stock girl/sales clerk at a very cute and unique gift shop in our local mall.

It was called “A Touch of Country”  one could find most unique handmade gifts, pretty scented candles, greeting cards and in the back of the store was a HUGE cookbook section. My boss “Barb” was an avid cook. She assigned me to take care of this section of the store and I was in complete heaven.

It was in this little corner of the store that I discovered who Martha Stewart was and were I cracked opened the Julia Child’s cookbook “Mastering the Art of French Cooking” for the very first time.

Back in the 80’s cookbooks were not as colorful and picture oriented as they are now. You had to read instructions to recipes without really getting to see what the end result may look like. I stumbled across a recipe called “German Pancake” (also referred to as “Swedish” or “Dutch” Pancake”) it seemed simple and yummy. But I never made it , I was too preoccupied doing all the things teenage girls do and staying home on a Saturday night to make “German Pancake” was just not a priority back then.

Until one day “Barb” took me to a pancake house for breakfast. It was on this day that I had “The German Pancake” a glorious concoction of 2,000 plus calories that was puffy like a beautiful cloud, had crisp little edges and smothered with melted butter. Then it was finished off with a fresh twist of lemon juice and sprinkled generously with powered sugar……..WOW it was life changing.

It still is life changing and you would be foolish to let time pass you by without ever making it. It’s too easy for words to make and the the toppings for it are endless. Recently I made two of my own versions of this. The base of this recipe was found in Chrissy Teigen’s – Cravings Cookbook.





Here is a list of possible toppings for this gorgeous pancake:

Melted butter

Fresh squeezed lemon juice


Mini chocolate Chips

Fresh chopped berries- Blueberries, Strawberries, Raspberries

Chopped nuts: pecans, walnuts, pistachio’s, toasted almonds


Salted Caramel

Chocolate Syrup

Dutch Pancake
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 4
  • 1 Cup all-purpose flour, sifted
  • 4 large eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk, at room temperature
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick ) butter, melted, plus softened butter for serving
  • Powdered sugar for dusting
  1. Preheat oven to 475 degrees
  2. In a blender, combine the flour, eggs, milk, salt and 2 tablespoons of melted butter and blend until smooth with no lumps. 20 to 30 seconds.
  3. In a 10 inch cast-iron skillet, heat the remaining 2 tablespoons melted butter over high heat until foamy. Add the batter and immediately put the skillet in the the oven. Bake until the outside of the pancake is puffed and a deep golden color. 17 to 18 minutes.
  4. Remove from the oven, drizzle with melted butter and cut into quarters.
  5. ** You can also pour syrup over the pancake and sprinkle with powdered sugar**







Bacon/Parmesan Popovers


Amazingly light, airy and moist popovers made so easily with one bowl. No mixer needed here!

Oh for the love of Popovers- They can be eaten for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner. There are no rules.


This version pairs so well with a simple egg in the morning. Today was the day!  Now it is noon and they are all gone. I sometimes refer to it as the “Morning Popover” the added touch of bacon and fresh grated Parmegianno Reggioano Cheese make it all so memorable. It’s so good you will wake in the middle of the night just thinking of them!









Mini Breakfast Frittatas


Why do I love these little cuties so much?

Because they are the most tasty “Make ahead – Can Be Served Hot or Cold” Breakfast on planet earth. This recipe is for a standard Frittata 101 start.

But you can really change it up by combining so many delicious ingredients.

Here are a few ideas to help get you started!

Pancetta & Caramelized Onions

Tomat0, Basil & Feta Cheese

Sausage, Spinach & Parmesan Cheese

Bacon, Spinach & Brie Cheese


Mini Breakfast Frittatas
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 12
  • Nonstick vegetable oil cooking spray
  • 8 large eggs
  • ½ cup whole milk
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon nutmeg
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 cup cooked bacon chopped
  • ½ cup freshly grated sharp cheddar cheese
  • 2 cups cooked spinach
  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. Spray the muffin tin ( with 12 cups) with nonstick spray. Whisk the eggs, milk, pepper, and salt in a large bowl to blend well. Stir in the bacon, cheese, and spinach. Fill prepared muffin cups almost to the top with the egg mixture. Bake until the egg mixture puffs and is just set in the center, about 15 to 18 minutes. Using a rubber spatula, loosen the frittatas from the muffin cups and slide the frittatas onto a platter. Serve immediately.


Monkey Bread


It’s hard for me to make this bread without thinking of the two dear “Monkeys” that have been in my life for many years. My Monkey Man #1 (Efrain Del Real- aka childhood friend that I got into many mischief adventures with) and Monkey Woman #2  (Marisa Rose Trujillo- my little partner in “Bratty Crime” Cousin). The three of us always have referred to each other affectionately as “Monkey”. Way back in the day before any of us married and grew up to have families of our own we where inseparable. I have many sweet memories of the three of us together. These days Efrain is father to 2 children (Chloe & Jacob) , Marisa is mother to 3 cats (plus about an average of 3 more on a monthly basis- she takes in homeless cats and fosters them until they get placed in forever homes and I am the proud mother to my three fabulous dogs – Bailey – Sasha & Copper.

Although I’m almost certain there are no actual monkeys in this recipe, it’s still very good.The best part about this here Monkey Bread? It’s easy. Hard to mess up, honestly. You’ll be just fine.


Monkey Bread
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Bread
Serves: 8
  • 3 cans Buttermilk Biscuits (the Non-flaky Ones)
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 2 teaspoons (to 3 Teaspoons) Cinnamon
  • 2 sticks Butter
  • ½ cup Brown Sugar
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Open up all three cans of biscuits and cut each biscuit into quarters.
  3. Next, combine the white sugar with 2-3 teaspoons of cinnamon. (3 teaspoons of cinnamon gives it a fairly strong cinnamon flavor. If you’re not so hot on cinnamon, cut it back to 2 teaspoons.) Dump these into a 1 gallon zip bag and shake to mix evenly.
  4. Drop all of the biscuit quarters into the cinnamon-sugar mix. Once all the biscuit quarters are in the bag seal it and give it a vigorous shake. This will get all those pieces unstuck from one another and nicely coated with cinnamon-sugar. Spread these nuggets out evenly in the bundt pan.
  5. At this point, you’re going to want to melt the two sticks of butter together with ½ cup of brown sugar in a saucepan over medium-high heat. This can be light or dark brown sugar. Cook butter/sugar mixture, stirring for a few minutes until the two become one. Once the brown sugar butter has become one color, you can pour it over the biscuits.
  6. Bake for about 30-40 minutes until the crust is a deep dark brown on top. When its finished cooking, remove it from the oven. If you have the willpower, allow it to cook for about 15-30 minutes before turning it over onto a plate.





French Cinnamon Puffs


For the Cinnamon lover in your life these little muffins can be made with many of the ingredients that very well already may be sitting your fridge and pantry. These can be served as a nice intro to a Sunday Brunch or can be stored in an airtight container for those busy mornings when you are on the run with your coffee mug in hand. OOhh Laaa Laaa these little cuties are so uber delish with coffee!

French Cinnamon Puffs
Prep time
Cook time
Total time
Recipe type: Breakfast
Serves: 12
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ⅔ cup shortening
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • Coating:
  • ½ pound (2 sticks) butter
  • 1½ cups sugar
  • 3 teaspoons ground cinnamon
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. Lightly grease 12 muffin cups.
  2. In a large bowl, stir together the flour, baking powder, salt and nutmeg. Set aside.
  3. In a separate large bowl, cream together the sugar and shortening. Add the eggs and mix again. Alternate adding one-third of the flour mixture and one-third of the milk to the creamed mixture, beating well after each addition.
  4. Fill the muffin cups two-thirds full. Bake until golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the muffins from the pan and set aside.
  5. To make the coating, melt the butter in a bowl or glass pan. In a separate container, combine the sugar and cinnamon.
  6. Dip the warm muffins in the butter, coating thoroughly.
  7. Then roll in the cinnamon-sugar mixture