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Seattle Cheese Festival and Weekend Brunch @ Home – Stuffed Croissants and French Banana Pancakes

>> Monday, May 18, 2009

The 5th Annual Seattle Cheese Festival was at the Pike Place Market on Saturday and Sunday ( 16th –17th May 09) and we were there for it! There were more than 200 cheeses from local and international markets (but we were able to taste only about 10-12 of them), cheese making demos, wine tasting, other cooking demos and what not!! Spent a good 2-3 hours there and even with just the tasting, I had soo much cheese that I have never had in a single day before. I managed to get quite a lot of pictures and i hope at least when i see them, I remember what all I had and how it tasted :)

We started with Tumalo Farms’ spread of cheeses. Their Classico cheese is the 2007 and 2008 winner of American Cheese Society. We were able to taste only the Classico, they had laid out their other brand Remembrance as well, but it was over by the time we reached there. Then we moved on to the next one which was the Williamette Valley Cheese. They had Gouda, Jack, Havarti and Cheddar cheeses of which the Raw Milk Cheddar is one of the best ever cheeses I have had and the Alpine Gouda was also good. The next stop was at Tillamook’s stall – I have bought Tillamook cheeses from the store, but always used them in sandwiches or in cooking and never tasted a piece as it is, and I'm glad I did so at the Cheese Festival. I am now a big fan of their pepper jack cheese!!! Franklin’s Cheese’s Teleme was like the creamiest cheese of all. We actually used a small spoon to scoop out some as opposed to the toothpicks for the other cheeses. Also, I'm sure even the cheese hater would love this cheese as there is none of the trademark “stink” to this cheese. Our last stop was at the Spanish Farmstead’s stall and tasted the Manchego and Spanish Mahon. There was also a stall of Macrina Bakery and I wanted to get some of their cookies, but the line just didn't seem to move and I had to give up. We also stopped at the DeLaurenti’s cooking demo by Jacquelyn Buchanan of Laura Chenel Chevre and got to see the making of Chevre & Lemon Vol-Au-Vents and Chevre Bitter Greens with Almonds ( got the recipes too!!) Also collected a lot of recipe and cheese info cards from the Oregon Cheese Guild. And, that was the end of our cheese festival experience. It is definitely a must go for anyone who is even remotely fond of cheese, you don’t have to be a cheese connoisseur to enjoy this. Make sure you go for this, if you are in Seattle around this time!

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Before leaving to the Cheese Festival, we had one of our weekend brunches at home and this time the menu looked like this:

* Raspberry Apple Stuffed Croissant – Apple and cheese stuffed croissants with Raspberry Ambrosia*

*French Banana Pancakes – Pancakes with Browned Bananas and a cream sauce*

* Fried Eggs and Toast*

* Coffee and Juice*


Raspberry Apple Stuffed Croissant

This is also from the book “Washington State Bread and Breakfast Cookbook” and this particular recipe is courtesy Angelica’s in Spokane.


4-5 fresh croissants
1 Granny Smith Apple, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp cinnamon
a pinch of nutmeg
1 tbsp sugar
1 egg
1/2 cup half and half
1 tsp vanilla
4-5 slices Muenster cheese ( 1 slice per croissant)

Raspberry Ambrosia
1 cup fresh raspberries
1 tbsp cornstarch ( i did not use the cornstarch)
1 tsp lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar
1 tsp cinnamon


Preheat the oven to 350F. In a small bowl, toss in the apple slices, cinnamon, nutmeg and sugar. Whisk together the egg, half and half and vanilla in another bowl and keep aside. Slit the croissants lengthwise upto 3.4 of the way and stuff with a slice of cheese, (i also used a slice of canadian bacon for AJs croissants) and apple mix and dip each croissant in the egg – half n half mixture and place in a greased baking sheet. Bake for about 30 mins or so.

Meanwhile, in a small sauce pan over medium heat, combine all the ingredients for the Raspberry ambrosia and cook till the mixture thickens a little. Drizzle this over the croissants and serve.

French Banana Pancakes

This is again from the same book and the recipe is from A Quail’s Roost Inn in Chelan, WA. I used only the banana side’s recipe from this. I made the pancakes using readymade multi grain pancake mix from Trader Joes.


1 tbsp butter
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon
a pinch of nutmeg
1/2 cup half and half
2 firm bananas, halved lengthwise and then cut into 2” pieces


Melt the butter in a skillet. Add the bananas and let it brown a little on both sides. Stir in the brown sugar, cinnamon and nutmeg. Add half and half and cook for a couple of minutes. Remove  from heat. Take out the bananas and reserve the liquid.

Serve the pancakes with the bananas and the cream instead of syrup!


Mangala Bhat May 18, 2009 at 12:28 PM  

wow! lovely post ....mindblowing pics

Smitha May 18, 2009 at 1:25 PM  

More than just reading your posts, I see a passion for food and cooking from each one of your posts. Keep going gal.

Mahimaa's kitchen May 18, 2009 at 2:16 PM  

wow.. what a filling breakfast. love those banana pancakes..

Indhu May 18, 2009 at 2:27 PM  

sooper yummy... love how you have arranged everything.. I too made pancakes this weekend... but I was too hungry and ate them as soon as they came off the pan :)

Cilantro May 18, 2009 at 3:06 PM  

First time here...are you from Seattle? Nice brunch. Love the Raspberry Croissant. lovely clicks too.

Pooja May 18, 2009 at 3:44 PM  

Wow great post! Never heard of cheese festival before. And the croissants and pancakes with bananas look awesome!

Superchef May 18, 2009 at 4:05 PM  

thanks Mangala, Smitha, Mahimaa and Indhu :)

thanks for visiting me, Cilantro. Yes, I am from Seattle! :)

Thanks Pooja! :)

Gita's Kitchen May 18, 2009 at 4:36 PM  

Nice photos...that sure is an awesome brekafast :)

Divya Vikram May 18, 2009 at 6:04 PM  

Wat a spread! And lovely cheeses!

Suparna May 18, 2009 at 6:11 PM  

Hi Mnaju,
wow visit to the cheese festival must have been great. nice snaps. the brunch dishes are so mouth watering, loved the stuffed croissants hmmmm...looks superb!

Reeni♥ May 18, 2009 at 6:21 PM  

What a lovely brunch!! Everything looks fantastic, especially the raspberry croisants!! And all those goodies you ate at the cheese festival, how fun!

Ramya Vijaykumar May 18, 2009 at 6:38 PM  

Awesome pictures this will make a great breakfast oh my what else can one ask for more than this!!!

Ashwini May 18, 2009 at 7:24 PM  

Wow I am drooling all over it. Yummy filling breakfast.

Sig May 18, 2009 at 8:24 PM  

Wow, you had all that food before going for the cheese festival? I would go with an empty stomach, I am such a cheesehead :) Great pics!

Arch May 18, 2009 at 9:35 PM  

Great pics...must have been a cheese lover's dream come true !! Your brunches are super...The pancakes look amazing !

Prathibha May 18, 2009 at 9:49 PM  

Pics are very nice...CHEESY FESTIVAL....
Brunch is good too...

Priya May 19, 2009 at 12:14 AM  

Thanks for the virtual cheesy festival enjoyed ! Thats a yummy and filling breakfast, am drooling over the croissants!!

Kayal May 19, 2009 at 1:15 AM  

Lovely pictures and very inviting.

5 Star Foodie May 19, 2009 at 4:34 AM  

I am so jealous that you have a Cheese festival in your area! How wonderful! The brunch looks amazing!

Vishali May 19, 2009 at 5:20 AM  

Pancakes and the stuffed croissants look yum da!

Parita May 19, 2009 at 5:24 AM  

Beautiful clicks...and delicious brunch too :)

Laavanya May 19, 2009 at 7:28 AM  

I like cheese with herbs and chillies - my friend got one from a farm in Europe and we just loved it. The festival sure sounds like a lot of fun.

Oh and I'm sure i've mentioned this before but I'm so inviting myself to one of your elaborate brunches when I visit Seattle (whenver that may be) :D

AnuSriram May 19, 2009 at 7:50 AM  

Cheese festival!! Looks like u had a wonderful time..
The spread is goody goody delicious... I think, its time to invite myself for the brunch!

Smitha May 19, 2009 at 9:04 AM  

Have something for u on my blog.

Jeena May 19, 2009 at 9:14 AM  

Yummy I love croissants and would just savour your raspberry treats! Sounds so tasty, love the cheese pics too. :-)

Poornima Nair May 19, 2009 at 12:27 PM  

All those cheeses sound so yumm and your breakfast brunch is just to die for...everything looks heavenly.

Rush May 19, 2009 at 2:20 PM  

lovely looking brunch :)

Superchef May 19, 2009 at 5:47 PM  

Thansk Gita and Divya :)

Thanks Suparna - the cheese festival was soo much fun!!

Thanks Reeni, Ramya and Ashwini!!

Thanks Sig..hehe, yeah i didnt want to hog up on all that cheese, so i made sure i ate something really good before venturing out! :D

Thanks Arch, Prathibha, Priya and Kayal!

Thanks Natasha :) im sure there will be something coming up in your area as well! :)

Thanks Vishali and Parita!

Thanks Laavanya..just let me know anytime you are in Seattle..will definitely invite you over :)

Thanks Anu and Thanks Smitha, so much for that award! :)

Thanks Jeen, Poornima and Rush :)

burpandslurp May 20, 2009 at 6:38 AM  

oh...WOW!!! my eyes are popping off my head!! please, please, can I come over for brunch?

DEESHA May 20, 2009 at 8:26 AM  

thatz some really great stuff there

Nithya Praveen May 20, 2009 at 9:22 AM  

Cheese festival...that sounds so neat:-).It must have been fun to try out a few of them...Lovely spread...loved the pancake pic:)

Trupti May 20, 2009 at 9:57 AM  

Brunch dishes looks delicious SC. Love the croissants

Purva Desai May 20, 2009 at 8:07 PM  

Thanks for sharing this lovely information of the festival.....everything looks cheesy...
Croissants are my fav tea time snacks and pancake looks delicious too

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