It’s been quite a while since I shared some Kitchen Therapy. But this – well – this recipe necessitates taking a moment, stepping away from the big list of things to do, and documenting.
You see, this whole thing started with Monkey donuts.
There’s a local donut shop down the road. My best friend swears the guy who owns it must smoke a lot of weed because some of the donuts look more like snack attacks – all loaded down with Oreo cookies and Lucky Charms cereal and Butterfinger candy bars. When our grandkids stay the night, Sawyer (the older, wiser “four-boy” as he calls himself) gets to journey there in his jammies, snuggled up close to Poppa so he can see better (it’s been their thing for about two years now). It’s actually called the Donut Hole, but it will forever be “Monkey Donuts” at our house because of the sign on the door.
It says “Monkeys always welcome.” Sawyer thinks that’s swell. One day, he’ll let his little sister Tyler join him on his jammie journey.
On Christmas morning, since fetching Monkey donuts was not an option, I wondered how we might make breakfast special for the two Littles (and please all the Bigs at the table too). God smiled on me with an abundance of doughnut-happy recipes – and Krispy Kreme Casserole made Christmas brunch fun. Of course, we called it Monkey Donut casserole. You can call it that too, if you’d like. Sawyer won’t mind at all.
That was Christmas. But that wasn’t the end of Krispy Kreme Casserole.
I made it again a few nights ago, for a little impromptu dinner party. But this time, I had something else in mind. Maybe it’s the gypsy-heart renegade in me what always asks “why” and “what if”, but I believe every recipe is more of a suggested stop than a final destination. There’s always an adventure waiting – rather like life, you know, with all those possibilities awaiting you if you just take a risk. So I adventured.
Adventuring is good for the soul. And for dessert.
I made the casserole, baked it until it was lovely and golden brown, and then cut it into lovely little rounds and popped them back into the oven to toast a bit more (about 20 minutes). The casserole rounds were then topped with cinnamon-kissed peaches and cream – a decadent, doughnut-loving shout-out to shortcake.
Now I’m wondering what else can be done with that Krispy Kreme Casserole? I’m making a supply list for the next adventure – bacon, apples, maybe a little Winter Jack…
Adventuring is good for the soul. Want to join me? Kitchen Therapy is open. And Monkey donuts are waiting.
Monkey Donut Casserole (Krispy Kreme Casserole)
6-8 servings, depending on your portion size
1 dozen stale Krispy Kreme glazed doughnuts (I won’t lie – I bought a dozen at the grocery store and they were absolutely perfect)
3 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup whole milk
1 cup heavy cream
½ cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon vanilla (if you have Mexican vanilla, use it – it’s magic)
1 t. pumpkin pie spice (I might use this almost in everything)
Grease a 9X13 baking dish. Cut or tear doughnuts into even pieces (6 to 8 pieces per donut works well). Place donut pieces in baking dish.
In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs, milk, cream, sugar, salt, vanilla, and spices. Pour mixture over doughnuts and press the doughnuts down to make sure they are moistened. Place in the refrigerator and let rest at least 2 hours (you can also make this ahead and let it rest overnight). Check on the casserole every now and then to make sure all the doughnut pieces are playing nice.
When it’s time to bake, preheat your oven to 350. Place the uncovered baking dish in oven, and bake for 45 minutes or until toasty brown.
Serve your casserole warm. You may drizzle it with chocolate syrup or classic cinnamon roll icing if you’d like. Or try my shortcakes for fun!
OK, now it’s your turn. What would you do with a Krispy Kreme Casserole? Share your ideas here – maybe I’ll turn them into a good Kitchen Therapy session!