Eggstravaganza

Eggstra Special Easter Traditions

2014 Eggstravaganza FB cover_Final

Brightly decorated eggs, the Easter Bunny, oodles of chocolate, and a family brunch are all integral parts of most annual Easter traditions.  Since we are celebrating our Eggstravaganza at the Original Pancake House this month, we decided to explore the history of Easter eggs to find out where this tradition began.

 

Though today Easter eggs are associated with the Christian holiday of Easter, the tradition of decorating and painting eggs extends back to ancient times.  As a symbol of life and rebirth, decorated eggs have been found in ancient civilizations in Africa, South and Central America, and Mesopotamia.  For example, Iranians have been decorating eggs for many thousands of years in honor of their new year’s holiday of Nowruz, which coincides with the spring equinox.  The Easter egg as we know it today may have pagan roots as part of a springtime and rebirth celebration that occurred each year and involved an egg hunt.

 

In the Christian religion, Easter eggs are symbols of the resurrection and rebirth of Jesus Christ.  In Orthodox and Eastern Orthodox churches, eggs are dyed red to represent the blood that Christ shed on the cross. The egg’s hard shell represents the Tomb of Christ and the cracking of the shell represents his resurrection. Easter egg rolling is representative of the rolling away of the stone in front of Christ’s tomb.  In A.D. 1610 under Pope Paul V, the Christian Church officially adopted the Easter egg as a symbol of the resurrection. These Easter traditions originated in Europe and Eastern Europe and were brought to the United States over the past century by immigrant families.  Today we continue to celebrate Easter with many of these old traditions including an Easter egg roll on the White House lawn and backyard Easter egg hunts.

 

However you plan to celebrate this Easter holiday, be it with an egg hunt or just a gathering of family and friends for brunch in Denver; the Original Pancake House wishes you a very happy Easter and a wonderful spring!


Eggstravaganza

Spring Eggstravaganza!

2014 Eggstravaganza FB cover_Final

Join us this month as we celebrate the incredible EGG with our Spring Eggstravaganza!   With the arrival of spring and Easter on the way, April is the perfect month to celebrate our favorite breakfast staple.  Did you know that the Original Pancake House menu offers over 20 different egg dishes?

This month, visit our Facebook page to vote on our weekly Egg-off!  Tell us which featured egg dish is the most eggcellent and you’ll be entered to win a $25 Original Pancake House gift card!  We’ll choose one lucky winner each week during the month of April.  Simply vote via the comments section on our weekly Facebook Egg-off post, and you’ll be entered to win.  If you haven’t visited our Facebook page yet, click here to be our friend!

What else makes eggs so incredible? Follow us on Twitter @OPHDenver this month for fun egg trivia and OPH Egg Favorites! We’ll share fun facts and recipes each day during the month.

And of course, the best way to celebrate our Spring Eggstravaganza is to come on in to Original Pancake House and try a few of our egg favorites.  Bring your whole family for the best breakfast in Denver; we look forward to seeing you soon!


Meyer Lemon Strawberry Muffins

Say Hello to Spring!

We've been waiting all winter and spring has finally arrived.  Flowers are poking their green stems through the dirt, small blooms are popping up on sunny corners, and even the trees are starting to bud.  With spring comes the annual promise of fresh produce including asparagus, strawberries, green onions, rhubarb, peas, grapefruit, and a variety of spring greens.  To celebrate the return of warm weather, here are a few fresh and seasonal recipes for a delightful spring breakfast.

Artichoke Frittata

Ingredients

2 9 ounce boxes frozen artichoke hearts, thawed and quartered

1/4 cup flour

1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil (EVOO)

12 large eggs

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup grated pecorino-romano cheese

1/4 cup chopped flat-leaf parsley

1 pinch nutmeg

Salt and pepper

Lemon wedges, for serving

Spring greens, for serving

 

Directions

1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. In a bowl, toss the artichokes with the flour to coat.

2. In a medium ovenproof skillet, heat the EVOO, 4 turns of the pan, over medium-high heat. Add the artichokes and fry until lightly golden, about 5 minutes. In a bowl, beat together the eggs, cream, cheese, parsley and nutmeg; season with salt and pepper. Pour the eggs over the artichokes and cook until just set.

3. Transfer the frittata to the oven and bake until set and golden, 10 to 12 minutes. Let cool, then slice into quarters and serve with the lemon wedges and a side of fresh spring greens

 

Meyer Lemon Strawberry MuffinsMeyer Lemon Strawberry Muffins

Ingredients

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 cup granulated white sugar
2 teaspoons baking powder
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
Zest and juice of one Meyer Lemon
1 large egg, lightly beaten
3/4 cup buttermilk
2/3 cup canola oil
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
2 cups chopped, fresh strawberries

 

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Position rack in center of oven. Butter or spray with a non-stick cooking spray 12 muffin cups. Set aside.

2. In a large bowl whisk together the egg, buttermilk, oil, Meyer Lemon juice and vanilla extract.

3. In another large bowl combine the flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and lemon zest. Gently fold in the berries. With a rubber spatula fold the wet ingredients into the dry ingredients and stir only until the ingredients are combined. Do not over mix the batter.

4. Fill each muffin cup almost full of batter, using two spoons or an ice cream scoop. Place in the oven and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of a muffin comes out clean, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool for about 5 minutes before removing from pan.

 

Spring Asparagus and Bacon Hash

Ingredients

¼ pound bacon, cut into ¼-inch dice (pancetta is also a good idea)

1 pound fingerling potatoes, peeled, cut into ½-inch dice

1 small yellow onion, diced

½ pound asparagus ends trimmed, cut into 1-inch segments

salt and pepper

2 tablespoons butter

4 eggs

 

Directions

1. Add bacon to a large cast iron pan set over medium heat. Cook, stirring occasionally, until browned and crisp, about ten minutes. Remove bacon with a slotted spoon and drain on paper towels.

2. Add potatoes to the pan, stir well until they are coated in the rendered fat, and then spread them out into a single layer. Season with salt and pepper, and cook without stirring until lightly browned on the bottom. Using a spatula, flip the potatoes and cook until lightly browned. Continue this process until all sides are lightly browned, about 15 minutes total.

3. Add onion to the pan and stir well. Cook until onions are softened, about five minutes. Add the asparagus, stir well, and then cover the pan. Cook, stirring occasionally, until asparagus is crisp and tender, five to eight minutes. Return the bacon to the pan, stir, and let cook for a minute until warm. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

4. Serve with scrambled eggs, fried eggs or poached eggs.

 

Of course, if these recipes sound like too much work, why not take yourself out to breakfast in Denver?  At the Original Pancake House, we would be happy to serve you one of our spring favorites such as the Strawberry Belgian Waffles or our Florentine Omelet!  Happy spring!


Cinnamon Almond French Toast

The Delicious History of French Toast

At the Original Pancake House, one of our favorite brunch menu items is French toast.  In fact, we love it so much, we offer four different types on our breakfast menu including Sourdough French Toast, Seasonal Berry French Toast, Cinnamon Almond French Toast, and the Denver breakfast favorite, Banana Praline French Toast.

Cinnamon Almond French Toast

 

With French toast on our minds, we were wondering, where did this delightful dish originate?  We were intrigued to find that, though the name implies a French origin, the first mention of this meal appears in Roman times.  In a cookbook attributed to Apicius, from the 4th or 5th century, a recipe simply called “aliter dulcia," or “another sweet dish,” describes soaking

bread in a milk and egg mixture, frying in oil, and then serving with honey.   French toast next appears in medieval cookbooks throughout Europe.  In France it was called “pain perdu” or “lost bread,” which probably referred to the fact the cooks used stale or old bread in this dish.  German, English, and Scandinavian cookbooks refer to the dish as “poor knights” bread, which is also a nod to the use of ol1d bread.

The first references to this ancient dish as “French toast” appear in the late 18th century in North America.  In New Orleans, the dish maintained its original French name of “pain perdu.” However, in English speaking areas of the North American colonies, the dish became known as French toast as it was popularized by French immigrants.

So the next time you are out for breakfast in Denver, share the ancient history of French toast with your fellow diners.  It is a fascinating story!


Breakfast for Champions

Breakfast of Champions: What are Olympic athletes eating?

Breakfast for Champions

With the 2014 Winter Olympics underway, we were wondering, what is the true breakfast of champions?  With nutrition being just as important as the innumerable hours spent training for the Olympic Games, what do Olympic athletes eat for breakfast?  With a bit of research, we found some astounding facts. Did you know that many Olympians, especially those in endurance sports, require 9,000 to 12,000 calories per day?!   Amazing!  If we were so lucky as to have one of these athletes join us for breakfast in Denver, we might have to serve them one of each item on The Original Pancake House Denver menu!

 

For a day of training and competition, we found that Olympians focus on a substantial, yet healthy, breakfast.  After all, this first meal provides the foundation of energy needed to go for the gold.  In general, Olympians start their day with a healthy mix of carbohydrates, fruits and protein.  Many will combine a large bowl of whole grain oats with fresh fruit, and milk or yogurt.  In addition, you will likely see athletes enjoy eggs, a great source of lean protein, with toast or a bagel for additional energy.  Some athletes are reported to eat a whopping 12 eggs for their first meal of the day!  And because they continually burn so many calories between training and competition, you will often see competitors munching on bananas and enjoying a glass of chocolate milk to keep their energy high.

 

From The Original Pancake House Denver, we wish all the athletes on Team USA “good luck” in the 2014 Sochi Olympic Games.  And for the twenty Coloradoans competing in Sochi, we would love to have you stop by for an Olympic-worthy breakfast in Denver when you return home!


Aquarium

Escape Cabin Fever: Fun winter activities for the whole family!

We all know the feeling.  It’s too cold to play outside, indoor games have lost their charm, and everyone is feeling restless.  So what to do when cabin fever hits?  Take an excursion!  Denver offers many fun, family-friendly activities for cold weather days.  Here are a few of our favorite winter activities:

Denver Museum of Nature and Science -

The Denver Museum of Nature and Science offers a fun and educational experience for Denver families.  Visitors explore neat exhibits on everything from the solar system to dinosaurs.  Be sure to check out the planetarium or see an IMAX film when you visit.

Ice Skating at Big Bear Ice Are

Aquariumna

If the kiddos are bouncing off the walls, then a trip to the Big Bear Ice Arena might be a good choice.  Located in the heart of Lowry, Big Bear offers public ice skating, broomball, figure skating lessons and ice hockey leagues.  If your kids have a need for speed, strap on a pair of skates and let them go!

Denver Aquarium -

The whole family will love strolling through Colorado’s largest aquarium.  With a maze of different aquatic habitats and thousands of sea creatures to admire, the Aquarium features a shipwreck and sunken temple to delight the kids.  Make sure you check out the Mystic Mermaids interactive show and get a tasty snack at the Aquarium restaurant.  

Fun City -

Grab a few friends and head to Fun City for hours of family entertainment.  Fun City offers oodles of activities including laser tag, a foam factory, go-karts, miniature golf, an arcade, and rock climbing. 

Enjoy Your Favorite Denver Breakfast-

At The Original Pancake House Denver, we love to take our whole crew out to breakfast on cold winter days.  With big plates of pancakes, eggs, waffles, and crepes to share, everyone will have a smile on their face! And once your bellies are full, you’ll be ready to try one of Denver’s fun, indoor activities.

 


The Fiesta Bowl

Heart-friendly Breakfast Ideas

With the start of the New Year, we all strive to make healthy decisions and fresh starts.  Thankfully, breakfast is one of the best ways to kick start healthy habits. If you start the day on a good note, it is much easier to continue the trend throughout the rest of your day, week, month, and year.  Here are a few breakfast ideas to get your day, and New Year, off to a heart-healthy start.

From The Original Pancake House "Lighter Side" menu
From The Original Pancake House "Lighter Side" menu

Breakfast Smoothie

– Combine one cup of low fat milk or soy milk with frozen strawberries and a sliced banana.  Blend in your food processor or blender until smooth and frothy.  For extra protein, add a scoop of protein powder.  Create variety by mixing and matching your fruits.

Incredible Egg-white Sandwich

– Assemble this delicious morning meal with a toasted whole-wheat English muffin, scrambled egg-whites and a slice of tomato.  For extra protein, add smoked salmon and you have the perfect brain-boosting breakfast.

Spunky Oatmeal

– Spruce up your oatmeal with the addition of fruit and nuts.  Adding tangy rhubarb, blueberries, raspberries, currents, or cranberries can add a much needed zip of flavor to this pantry staple.  By adding nuts you’ll get an extra boost of protein, healthy fats, and vitamins to help keep you full and feeling great all morning.

And when you are heading out for breakfast in Denver, try The Original Pancake House Denver’s “Lighter Side” menu.  We offer breakfast favorites like Old Fashioned Oatmeal, Cream of Wheat, Scrambled Egg Whites, and Homemade Granola, to name a few.  With these heart-friendly options, you can enjoy a delicious, guilt-free breakfast out with your family!


donut

Winter holiday food traditions around the world

At The Original Pancake House Denver, we love the holiday season.  Each year during the months of November and December, we add a few holiday favorites to our Denver breakfast menu – Sara’s Granola Waffle with Maple Whipped Cream, Egg Nog French Toast and our much loved Ho! Ho! Ho! Pancakes, to name a few.  These special breakfast traditions always make our season brighter and we love sharing them with our OPH Denver family.  Which got us to thinking – we know what we love for a holiday breakfast in Denver, what are some holiday traditions celebrated by other cultures and religions?  We did a bit of research and found a multitude of delicious dishes to make your mouth water!

Mexican Holiday Feastdonut-179983_640

In a traditional Mexican holiday feast you will likely find tamales on the menu.  Because they take so much time and care to prepare, many families only serve them on special occasions.  Mexican tamales are wrapped and steamed in a paper or a corn husk and are filled with masa, a corn based dough, and either meat, cheese, fruits, vegetables, or chiles.

In addition to tamales, pan dulce is traditional treat during the holiday season. These sweet rolls are made fresh daily in local panaderias. Almost like a Mexican doughnut, you might find them with a red or green topping and festive sprinkles.

Filipino Christmas Treat

Just after Midnight Mass on Christmas Day, many Filipino families enjoy a Bibingka Especial. This coconut and rice flour cake is lightly sweet, and made with rice or cassava flour. Traditionally, these cakes are cooked over charcoal in a banana-leaf-lined clay pot.  Served with tasty toppings, Bibingka Especial is very popular in the Philippines during the Christmas holiday season.

The German Fruitcake

Ah, the infamous fruitcake!  Dresdner Stollen, the original and famous fruitcake recipe from Dresden, is sold throughout Germany during the holiday season.  Made from rich yeast dough and mixed with candied fruits and nuts, these special holiday loaves are folded before baking to symbolize the baby Jesus in his swaddling clothes.

American Kwanzaa Traditions

Kwanzaa is a weeklong celebration that links African traditions and American customs. Kwanzaa runs from December 26 through January 1 of each year and is always accompanied by friends, family and feasting! On each day of a Kwanzaa celebration, the host serves a dish from a different symbolic place, such as Africa, the Caribbean, and South America.  These dishes might include black-eyed peas, shrimp creole, mashed yams, corn bread, or creamed collard greens.

Hanukkah Brunch

Also known as the Festival of Light, Hanukkah is celebrated for eight days and eight nights in the Jewish religion.  A typical Hanukkah brunch always includes several delectable dishes.  Potato latkes, or crispy potato pancakes, are a staple of many Hanukkah meals.  In addition you might find a simple applesauce, or delicious egg frittata.  To round out the meal, Jewish families often serve homemade doughnuts, a tribute to the oil that lasted eight days and nights, and traditional rugelach cookies.

Whatever holiday you celebrate this season, and whatever your heritage, we hope you are able to share a good meal with friends and loved ones! Happy Holidays from The Original Pancake House Denver!


christmas

Holiday Stocking Stuffers!

It’s that time of year!  The hustle and bustle of the holiday season has us bundled up and running around town finding little things to bring joy to our family and friends.  To help you out, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite stocking stuffer ideas! christmas-21636_640

For the forgetful spouse

– Trying to get to your favorite Denver breakfast spot and they can’t find their keys…again?  This key fob locater may be just the gift!  Now they just have to remember to attach it to their key chain!

For the eco-conscious friend

– For the tree-hugger in your life, Carbonfund.org offers several gift options.  Choose between offsetting their carbon footprint or planting trees, for as little as $10 you can make your green friend a happy camper!

For the over-worked

– She canceled your Saturday morning Denver breakfast date again because she had to work?  Brighten up her cube with some fun games from officeplayground.com.  This fun website offers little gadgets such as mind bender games, stress balls, and even solar powered flowers for her desk.

For the techie

– For the family member or friend who is attached to their new iPhone, these gloves are just the gift.  The North Face E-Tip glove has full palm conductivity so you can stay connected and active on your touch screen without exposing fingers to the frosty elements.

!For the Foodie – Give the gift of Pancake Cheer!  Did you know The Original Pancake House Denver offers gift cards?  Share the joy of a delicious breakfast with co-workers, friends and family!  Nothing says love quite like the gift of a warm and delicious breakfast in Denver.

Happy shopping and Happy Holidays from your OPH Denver Family!


Ingredients for Salsa

What’s cooking? The Original Pancake House Denver chefs share their favorite home recipes!

The chefs at The Original Pancake House Denver are up early every morning to create delightful breakfast treats for our customers.  Pancakes, crepes, waffles and omelets are hand-crafted and cooked to perfection by our hard-working team.  So what do our chefs do when they head home for supper?   They cook, of course!  Here are a few of their favorite recipes to make at home.  Read on as these dishes will warm you up on the coldest winter days!

 

Ceviche Recipe by Guillermo Jimenez

Ingredients

2 lbs. tilapia

5 tomatoes, diced

1 small onion, diced

1 carrot, shredded

2 cucumbers, diced

1 jalapeno, diced

1 bunch of cilantro

8 lemons, juiced

Salt to taste

 

Directions:

Bring a pot of water to a boil.  Place tilapia in boiling water for 3 minutes.  Once tilapia is cooked, shred the tilapia into a bowl and add the fresh lemon juice.  Stir to coat.  Place tilapia in the refrigerator for an hour.  After an hour, add remaining ingredients and salt to taste.  Allow the mixture time to marinate.  Enjoy on a tostada with sliced avocado.

 

The Original Pancake House Denver Chefs’ Homemade Salsa

Ingredients for Salsa!

 

Ingredients

4 tomatoes

1 jalapeno

1 onion

1 clove of garlic

 

 

Directions:

Grill or boil the tomatoes and jalapeno until soft.  Once soft, place all ingredients into blender and puree.  Add salt and pepper to taste.

 

We appreciate Guillermo and The Original Pancake House chefs sharing their kitchen secrets with us!  We are lucky to have such a talented team in the back of the house to bring you our much loved breakfast recipes.  What winter recipes are a staple in your home? Share them with us on Facebook @OPHDenver.


Pancake Cheer

Share your Pancake Cheer!

Join us this Holiday Season in sharing Pancake Cheer!  During the month of December, we'd like to share the JOY that our pancakes bring to you and yours.  Pancake Cheer!

Helping us share this message is as easy as...

1. Snap a photo of you and friends or family enjoying breakfast.

2. Upload your photo to Facebook and/or Twitter to share the JOY!

3. Tag @OPHDenver and include #PancakeCheer in your post (we don't want to miss your photos!)

 

And what is better than sharing Pancake Cheer?  We'll randomly select two winners from #PancakeCheer photos on social media to receive $25 gift cards to The Original Pancake House!

Happy Holidays!


Thanksgiving Dinner

Thanksgiving Tradition…is delicious!

Funny how perfectly our saying “Tradition is Delicious” fits the Thanksgiving holiday. Whenever we gather around the table with our loved ones, it’s hard not to include tradition.  And in the case of Thanksgiving, most traditions are delicious! We’ve collected a few interesting turkey day traditions from across the United States; read on to find out how folks celebrate

Thanksgiving Dinner

around the country.

What’s on the menu?

Perhaps the most important part of the holiday is the food!  But the Thanksgiving spread varies widely depending on geographic location.  Southerners often deep fry their turkeys, in New England you are likely to find a salt-brined bird, and in Hawaii they rub their turkeys with coffee grounds.  Side dishes also vary widely with variations on sweet potatoes, mashed potatoes, stuffing, veggies and cranberry sauce.  In the Pacific Northwest, locally foraged mushrooms are usually featured in the meal, while in the southwest, you might find Mexican influences such as spicy chorizo, chilies and cilantro. And for desert, the most common choice is usually the pumpkin pie, but in the south you are likely to be served a pecan pie and many mid-westerners opt for apple deserts.

What do we do after the meal?

Due to the tryptophan in the turkey, many folks find themselves napping after such a large feast.  But of those who manage to stay awake, many families opt for football on TV or perhaps a game of tag football in the backyard.  In New York City, you can’t miss the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade, an annual tradition since 1924.  And the local Turkey Trot is a great family activity for those who want to work off some of that gravy!  As it is a holiday of thanks, many families also use Thanksgiving as an opportunity to volunteer and give back to those who are less fortunate in their communities.

Giving thanks

One common theme among all American families is a pause during the gathering to give thanks.  It is important to remember the reason we gather on Thanksgiving Day and appreciate the wonderful food, family, and friends that we have in our lives.

At Original Pancake House Denver, we are very thankful for all of our loyal customers and wonderful staff who support us.  We are so grateful to all the folks who make The Original Pancake House Denver part of their breakfast tradition.

Happy Thanksgiving!