Jan Scott

Jan Scott is an event planner, food writer and the face behind the family food blog www.familybites.ca. She's also the mom of two school-aged boys, and when she's not planning a party or writing about feeding a family she can be found in her kitchen whipping up lots of yummy things for her boys to eat.
Father’s Day Breakfast: Spicy Eggs Baked in a Baguette
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The recipe is so popular in my house—especially with my husband—that it seemed remiss not to share it here in hopes of helping you plan your breakfast menu for this coming weekend. I made and shared a variation of this baked baguette on my own blog a few months ago, and based on reader feedback I know it’s quick-cooking, kid-friendly (maybe not this exact version) and worth knowing how to make.

This particular variation is fancied up in favour of the men in our lives, and boasts popular flavours you know they’re sure to be fond of. Made with sausage, pickled jalapeño peppers, and gooey aged cheddar cheese, this dish is guaranteed to please a crowd come Sunday morning.

What I love best about this type of breakfast is that it can be customized to suit a variety of palates, so if peppers are not to your liking, feel free to improvise by using green onions, cherry tomatoes or baby spinach instead. I like to serve mine with mixed greens tossed in light vinaigrette, some sliced fresh fruit and plenty of piping hot coffee.

Spicy Eggs Baked in a Baguette

Serves 2–4

You’ll Need:

  • 1 one-pound French baguette (approx. 18” x 3”)
  • 5 eggs
  • 1/3 cup half-and-half cream
  • ½ tsp salt
  • ½ tsp fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 cup shredded aged cheddar cheese
  • 2 Italian sausages, casings removed, crumbled and cooked
  • Pickled jalapenos
  • Hot sauce, optional

Prep and Cook:

  1. Preheat oven to 350° F and line a large (15 x 10-inch) baking sheet with parchment paper.
  2. Using a sharp serrated knife cut a wedge lengthwise into the top of the baguette, leaving one inch intact on each end. Remove the insides of the bread with your fingers (save for homemade breadcrumbs) and arrange bread shell on the prepared baking pan.
  3. In a large glass measuring cup combine eggs, half-and-half cream, salt and pepper.
  4. Scatter ½ cup of the cheese into the bread boat, sprinkling it evenly over the surface. Top with crumbled sausage. Carefully pour egg mixture into bread shell, sprinkle with the remaining ½ cup cheese, and garnish with pickled jalapenos (as many as you like).
  5. Bake, uncovered, for 18–23 minutes or until eggs are set and the edges of the bread are golden brown and crisp. Let stand for 5 minutes. Using a serrated knife carefully cut loaf into slices and serve with hot sauce, if desired.

 

Jan Scott is an event planner, food writer and the face behind the family food blog www.familybites.ca. She's also the mom of two school-aged boys, and when she's not planning a party or writing about feeding a family she can be found in her kitchen whipping up lots of yummy things for her boys to eat.
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road trip tricks and tips
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School is almost out for summer, and many families are putting pencil to paper (or fingers to apps!) as they make preparations for their annual summer vacations. For some, holiday travel will bring plenty of time in the car and whether you’re road tripping for three hours or ten, I have some tips and tricks guaranteed to make your car rides more enjoyable for everyone involved.

My family does a road trip every summer, which often involves a 15–22 hour drive each way. The following ideas have been tested time and time again on kids ranging in age from 2 to 14.

  1. Take at least one long road trip with your family before your children leave home.
  2. A two-hour drive doesn’t count as a road trip.
  3. Whatever electronic rules are in place at home go out the window the minute you step into the car.
  4. Seasons of TV shows are far better bang-for-your-buck than movies. In other words, you get 572 minutes of entertainment versus 90 minutes for almost the same price.
  5. If you don’t have a built-in DVD player in your car (we don’t) a laptop works just as well, and the screen is actually bigger.
  6. A dual charger keeps everyone happy and powered up when travelling by car.
  7. Road maps are essential, even if you have a GPS.
  8. Program all potential stops and destinations into your GPS before leaving home.
  9. It’s crucial to have a good selection of music available for the car. Inevitably, you will run into stretches of highway where not a single radio station tunes in properly.
  10. Make a family road trip CD. Ask each person to choose five songs of their liking and burn them all to one disc. Label the album with the destination and year of your vacation (‘South Carolina, 2014’) and keep it as a memento of your travels.
  11. Play games! Road trip bingo, travel versions of popular board games, Would You Rather, Rock, Paper, Scissors, etc.
  12. Read, read, and read. Comic books are ideal and sometimes easier than something huge like Harry Potter. Our Calvin and Hobbs books have been everywhere with us.
  13. Keep a pack of wet wipes in the car, no matter how old your kids are.
  14. The same goes for napkins and garbage bags.
  15. For young kids, fill small bins with toys, books, activities, games, etc. Swap them out every two hours and replace with a new bin to keep things interesting.
  16. Pack plenty of snacks. More than you think you will need. And treats! After all, you are on vacation.
  17. Another note about snacks: no food on sticks or skewers allowed. You don’t want to give the kids tools to use for poking each other, and you know just as well as I do that when you’re packing for a big trip you don’t have time to make the food look cutesy.
  18. If you have the space, fill a cooler with ice and drinks. It’s so much better/easier than buying them on the road.
  19. However, do buy some snacks or a meal on the road. That’s part of the fun.
  20. Keep your camera handy.
  21. Insist the kids wear sandals. They will always want to take their shoes off and the smell of sweaty sneakers isn’t conducive to spending 15 hours in the car. Plus, when you stop it’s easier to slip them back on the feet.
  22. Plan at least one surprise. It could be an unexpected movie/TV show to watch, snack, or pit stop.
  23. Ten hours is pretty much the longest amount of time anyone should spend in a car. If your trek is longer than that, break it up in to two smaller drives.
  24. However, when faced with the choice of stopping overnight on the drive home, or pushing through to get it over and done with, opt for the latter. You’ll thank yourself for the extra day at home before you have to get back to reality.

Are you road-tripping this year? If so, we’d love to hear about where you’re heading. Also, do you have any secrets for success to add to my list?

Jan Scott is an event planner, food writer and the face behind the family food blog www.familybites.ca. She's also the mom of two school-aged boys, and when she's not planning a party or writing about feeding a family she can be found in her kitchen whipping up lots of yummy things for her boys to eat.
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