All photos taken with the iPhone.


I shared with you previously that Christmas is my favorite time of the year. Christmas indeed was a glorious day for our family. My mom and I, the early birds, brewed some coffee and enjoyed the peace before getting ready for Christmas service. Although my mom had already prepared and planned a Christmas dinner at home, I wanted us to gather together for a quick Christmas breakfast as well. After contemplating between baking a sweet bread pudding and a savory one, I opted for the latter since we would be indulging in Hawaiian Paradise Cheesecake later in the evening. I always believe in cooking healthy and would think you share similar sentiments. My version of savory tomato-mushroom rosemary bread pudding may not taste as rich or buttery, but it still satiates cravings and does enough justice. (Photos were not taken with our DSLR. No need to ruin holiday spirits and mood, right?)

4 cups of cubed Whole Wheat Bread
1/2 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
3 Eggs
1/4 tsp Salt
Ground Black Pepper
1 tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 tsp Italian Seasoning (thyme, oregano, basil, rosemary, etc.)
1 branch of Fresh Rosemary
3/4 tsp Garlic Salt
4 cups Cherry or Sugar Plum Tomatoes, halved
3 cups Mushrooms (Oyster, trumpets, beech, and porcini are my favorites)
1/3 cup Walnuts
1 cup Shredded Organic Mozzarella
1/4 cup Earth Balance Margarine

{For the “Custard”}
1. Pour the milk into a large bowl.
2. Crack open 3 large [organic] eggs.
3. Add the salt and ground pepper.
4. Beat the mixture until you reach a smooth texture.

{For the Filling}
1. In a pan, lightly sauté halved sweet sugar plum/cherry tomatoes and mushrooms with olive oil, garlic salt, and the Italian seasoning. Taste and add garlic or salt as needed. Add walnuts as well.
2. In a 8×8 baking pan, coat the surface with Earth Balance Margarine.
3. Layer with cubed bread pieces.
4. Transfer the tomato and mushroom mixture to the baking pan.
5. Add a layer of shredded mozzarella.
6. Pour the custard over as evenly as possible.
7. Add fresh rosemary leaves on top.
8. Pre-heat for about 10 minutes at 375-400 degrees (depends on oven).
9. Bake until golden (roughly 30-35 minutes) and serve!

Happy New Year, everyone! Off to grandmother’s, we go.