Monday, December 28, 2009

California Dreaming: Coast Toast...

Having just returned from a month in my other “homeland” and to a non-stop flood of sideways rain in Italy, I am still longing for certain things “americana”. Can’t help it. It’s a common thing, as many of you expats know. I will return to blogging about Italy, but for now, I am going to do a little California dreaming and hope it makes your mouth water!

One of my favorite things about our annual pilgrimage to SoCal is going out for a big ol’ American breakfast. We make a trip each year down to La Jolla to one of the best breakfast houses in the coast, Brockton Villa. It is, literally, an old beach house with a million dollar view and OUTSTANDING food. Their signature item is “Coast Toast”. French toast (especially after nearly a year without it) is already too good, but this special recipe makes it "a slice of heaven!":

1 loaf of soft French bread (sliced diagonally about 1 1/2” think)

1 qt. whipping cream

10 eggs

3/4 cup orange juice

1/2 cup sugar

a pinch of salt

2 Tbs. vanilla

2 Tbs. orange flavoring

Combine the liquid ingredients. Pour over the bread slices. Cover and refrigerate at least 1 hour. Remove bread and discard liquid. Spread butter on flat grill. Cook bread until golden brown, then bake at 450 degrees for 5-7 minutes or until bread is puffed up like a souffle. Dust with powdered sugar. Serve immediately. (Serves 6)

Brockton Villa

1235 Coast Blvd.

La Jolla, CA

(858) 454-7393


Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Casa Dolce Casa...

72 hours ago I was in this.

One flight from hell (since when is the leg room so small on a plane that carries 300+ people that I could not cross my legs? And what was that slimy pink thing I ate that they called salmon?!), one missed flight (maybe I needed the break after the first one?!) and a day stuck in snow and disorganization to the max (who knew in Germany?!), we made it back to this.

It sure may not look pretty, but it’s home. And I’m glad to be here.


from a blistery, damp Italian Riviera!!!