Innkeepers have to be jacks of all trades, and the innkeepers and owners of Historic Inns of Rockland certainly have become experts in everything from plumbing to accounting to baking. During the busy months, the clever Maine innkeepers from Berry Manor Inn, LimeRock Inn and Granite Inn have developed some tricks of the trade to insure a delicious and hearty breakfast is served each morning. Often serving to a full house of guests, visiting Rockland for romantic getaways and culinary vacations, they know their guests look forward to a hearty breakfast each morning. And to insure they deliver that memorable meal, each of the innkeepers has developed some secrets that they’re willing to share with readers here. Try one of these and you’ll be insured of a “Historic Inns of Rockland- worthy” breakfast next time you’re serving a crowd.
- When cooking coffee cakes or muffins for a crowd, try preparing the batter the night before (or up to 3-4 days in advance) and place it in the pan then in the freezer overnight uncooked. In the morning put the cake in the middle of the cold oven, turn the temperature on and add about 7-10 minutes to the normal cooking time. The preheat cycle becomes the defrost cycle. If the cake has been frozen for more than overnight you may need to add a little time to the total cooking cycle. Your guests enjoy the wonderful smells of freshly baked coffee cake or muffins without you having to think!
- “The “wild” blueberries from Maine freeze fabulously,” says Cheryl Michaelsen. “We buy flash frozen berries by the pounds from the blueberry farm and enjoy fresh Maine blueberries year round. You can find Wyman or other Maine brands in your local freezer but make sure they say “Maine Wild Blueberries”. The wild blueberries from Maine are the smaller, sweeter ones. You can freeze all blueberries, so next summer when you’re passing the farm stand, be sure to pick up some Maine blueberries for freezing.
- For a simple but yummy fruit dish to serve for a special breakfast try serving a fruit parfait. Start with a fancy cocktail glass, just to add some flair, and place a layer of homemade granola on the bottom, add a layer of vanilla yogurt, a layer of fresh fruit like fresh blueberries, strawberries or raspberries; finish it off with a little more granola, mint leaf and a few more berries. Everyone at the breakfast table will think that they’re at a B&B when you serve this simple yet easy breakfast dish.
Here’s a great recipe for homemade granola, coming to you straight from the Granite Inn.
Granite Inn Granola
6 cups rolled oats
¼ cup canola oil
1 cup millet
1 cup Maple syrup (preferably Maine Maple syrup)
1 cup flax seed
2 tsp vanilla
1 cup almonds, sliced
½ tsp cinnamon
½ cup sunflower seeds
1 cup dried cranberries
½ cup brown sugar
1 cup dried currants
Preheat oven to 325°. Put the first five ingredients in a bowl and mix. Mix the next four ingredients in a separate bowl then combine the two mixtures. Spread evenly on unlined sheets and bake for 15 minutes. Take out and stir, and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Stir again and continue baking and stirring every five minutes until the color is golden brown. Let cool, then add the dried fruit into the mixture a stir a final time. Yields about 13 cups of granola.