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Make Mother's Day special with breakfast treats

By J. Scott Wilson, Food Editor
Published On: Jan 31 2012 10:27:29 AM CST
Updated On: May 02 2013 08:30:40 AM CDT
Breakfast in bed

The ritual of breakfast in bed on Mother's Day is a classic one. In the Norman Rockwell version, Dad and the kids bring in a tray with a couple of pancakes, maybe some sausage, fresh fruit and what looks like a quart jug of mimosas, which Mom will need later when she sees the wreck they've left in the kitchen.

So, our first lesson this Mother's Day will be: Clean up after yourself! Whatever you make for Mom, be sure she doesn't have to clean up after your noble efforts. Nothing makes a meal taste better than knowing you won't have to lift a hand to clean up afterward. Being able to tuck into a tasty meal secure in the knowledge that when your plate reaches the kitchen it will rest upon a clean counter makes pancakes fluffier, bacon crisper and fruit sweeter.

To help you out with your Mother's Day plans, I've found two merchants providing just the things you'll need to make the most memorable breakfast ever, and the first one doesn't involve any cooking at all!

My new pal Raoul is a cereal genius. He saw a world full of unfulfilled granola eaters and figured out how to make their dreams come true. He saw us opening boxes, bags and bottles, buying dried fruit and candies and trying to mix up the perfect granola, either for breakfast or for snacks. On his website, MixMyGranola.com, you can select your granola flavor, and then the real fun begins. Choose from a dizzying array of fruits (from traditional raisins and dried cranberries to exotic things like goji berries and papaya), seeds and nuts (peanuts and almonds to amaranth and flax seeds) and even "extras" like M&M's, pomegranate cordials, crystallized ginger and tiramisu caramels. Whatever Mom's tastes, you'll be able to find plenty to tempt her palate.

You might even try one breakfast mix and one snack mix!

And, as the finishing touch, you get to pick a name for your mix that will be printed on the canister. Teenagers, this might be the time to come up with that "Can I Borrow The Keys?" mix.

If you'd like to actually cook something for Mother's Day, Frieda's, Inc. has something that will make your life much easier. Crèpes are one of the classic elegant breakfast foods, with an array of fillings and sauces that can boggle the mind. The problem for most of us (including me) is actually making the crèpes. I'm fortunate enough to have a good friend who's French, and she occasionally makes crèpes that convince me I'm just not genetically cut out to do the job.

Fortunately, Frieda's has French Style Crèpes that will fool all but the most discerning chefs. You can warm the crèpes by the package directions and move on to the fun part, the fillings. You can find a list of grocers in every state that carry Frieda's products, or order the crèpes directly from the site, www.friedas.com.

And if you're lacking for inspiration when it comes to those, the Frieda's website has loads of great recipes that will help you plan the perfect meal.

In fact, here's one now!

Strawberry Brunch Crèpes

These easy breakfast crèpes can be assembled several hours ahead, then baked and served for a buffet brunch, or a sit-down breakfast. Leave the cream cheese out at room temperature for 30 minutes for easier spreading.

1 cup strawberry glaze 4 cups fresh strawberries, sliced, or mixed raspberries, blueberries and sliced strawberries 1 package Frieda's® Ready-to-Eat Cr&3232;pes at room temperature Two 8-ounce containers chive cream cheese 10 (1-ounce) slices deli-sliced smoked ham, chicken or turkey 2 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 350°F. Spray a large shallow baking dish or baking sheet with sides with aerosol cooking spray. In a bowl gently stir the strawberry glaze into berries.

Place one of the crèpes on a flat surface. Spread 2 tablespoons of the cream cheese over crepe, to edges. Top with one 1-ounce slice of meat (or 2 very thin slices). Spoon ¼ cup of the berry mixture onto center of crepe; roll up. Place the crepe seam side up in prepared baking dish. Repeat with remaining crèpes and filling (save remaining berry mixture for garnish). Brush crèpes lightly with melted butter. Cover pan with foil; bake crèpes for 8 to 10 minutes, or until heated through.

Serve crèpes hot, topped with some of the remaining berry mixture. Makes 5 servings (2 crèpes each).

Whatever you do for Mom, be sure your heart's in it. Anything you do, from the most elaborate spread to the simplest bowl of granola with fruit, it will mean the world if it comes with plenty of love and lots of care. Moms go for that kind of thing. It's the reason they didn't sell us all to the circus when we were bratty kids.