Believe it or not I have never had a pumpkin spice latte. Gasp. Where have I been? I know. While I love pumpkin and spices I’ve never really found the idea of coffee with pumpkin and spices too appetizing. Coffee and pumpkin pie? Yes. Coffee and pumpkin bread? Yes. Pumpkin pie in my coffee. No. See what I mean? Or maybe I just have no idea what a pumpkin spice latte is like - a distinct possibility. I digress. My point is that now that it is officially fall, seasonal pumpkin flavor is out in full force. From the ubiquitous latte to yogurt, m&m’s, cheerios, cinnamon rolls, beer, donuts, ice cream and everything in between, I’ve been seeing orange everywhere. I’ve also been trying to make healthier breakfasts for the kids. They are pretty good eaters so it’s not too hard, but they are kids. They don’t worry about calories or carbs (thank goodness) and they love eggo waffles, chocolate chip pancakes, lots of beige stuff and sugar, sugar, sugar! Who can blame them? Not me. But I do try to offset this by adding vegetables to their muffins, solid sources of protein to their morning meals in the form of eggs, peanut butter and yogurt and by serving them whole grains whenever possible. I’m not fanatical about this kind of thing, but I try.
Pumpkin french toast is such an easy way to get my seasonal pumpkin fix while also providing my kids with a (somewhat) healthy breakfast that they love. I cut it into sticks for the kids and give them their own little cups of syrup to dip them in. I’m super-stingy with the syrup but they haven’t caught onto that yet. Parenting, like most things, is all about managing expectations.
I happen to think this breakfast would be a perfect match for some Irish weather and a cup of tea or coffee. Did you know that while pumpkins do grow in Ireland there are very few pumpkin growers in the entire country? According to the Irish Times, in 2014 there were only 11 commercial pumpkin growers in the whole country. Maybe in our next lives Paul and I can move there and become pumpkin farmers!
Pumpkin French Toast
4 pieces whole wheat bread (best if stale but fresh works too)
3 large eggs
1-2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice
¼ cup milk
¾ cup pumpkin puree
1 tablespoon coconut sugar or brown sugar lightly packed
a pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Butter for the pan
Maple syrup for serving
Mix the eggs, spice, milk, pumpkin, sugar, salt and vanilla in a large bowl and whisk to combine.
Coat griddle or pan with butter and heat over medium high heat.
Add pieces of bread one by one to bowl containing the pumpkin mixture and coat thoroughly, until fully saturated.
Place bread on hot griddle or pan and cook until bottom of slices begin to brown, a couple of minutes.
Flip and cook for a couple of minutes on the other side or until both sides are golden brown and french toast is springy to the touch.
Serve warm with butter and maple syrup.