Wednesday 13 February 2013

Making the Madhouse breakfast time less mad !

Warburtons have launched a new campaign to help families, and busy mums in particular, take the hassle out of breakfast and make sure their "little monsters" get a good start to the day. Coming hot on the heels of  Farmhouse Breakfast Week (you may remember our daily #BreakfastWatch blogposts during that week), they are asking people to share their top tips and breakfast recipes in order to create the ultimate breakfast handbook, exploring the different ways we manage breakfast so that families can be up, ready and out of the house with a nutritious and tasty breakfast inside them with the minimum amount of hassle. Mums have to juggle twice as many tasks as business owners, directors and decision makers during the breakfast rush hour, according to new research by Warburtons, who found that mums have to tackle an average of 9.8 challenges during the busy 73-minute window from 7.17 - 8.30am - compared to an average of just 4.2 tasks, which senior business people (men and women) face in their first hour and a quarter at work.

Warburtons sent us through a rather fabulous hamper of breakfast goodies to help get us the day off to a good start, which got a very warm reception here at The Madhouse. It contains a range of their breakfast products, including different loaves of bread, half and half rolls, brioche swirls and crumpets, and they also put in some jam and honey - yum !

So the idea is for me - and you - to share all those little tips and ideas that help keep the breakfast routine running smoothly. You can join in over on the Warburtons Facebook page where you can win prizes for sharing your tips - this week's prize is some rather fab personalised egg cups - but I'd love to see your tips in the comments below too.

Well, my first top tip is do as much as you can the night before. Lay out tomorrow's clothes and shoes, get all school bags/PE kits/canteen cards ready and waiting by the door, check your diary/calendar for tomorrow's appointments and check any notes brought home from school have been signed. This means that you don't have a zillion other things to do in the morning and can actually enjoy breakfast. 

But you can also prepare breakfasts in advance. One thing I learned during breakfast week is that bacon sarnies taste just as good if you cook the bacon the night before and zap it in the microwave for 30 seconds the next morning as you spread your ketchup or HP sauce on your bread. The Bacon & Cheese Muffins and Peanut Butter & Banana Muffins also went down a treat and can be made several days in advance.

For little monsters with little appetites first thing in the morning, try a selection of breakfast nibbles to tempt them. The Madhouse Mini-testers call this a Princess Breakfast (can't remember where that name came from but it's stuck !) and Sophie loves preparing a platter for each member of the family with a few slices of banana, apple, orange, a slice of brioche or toast cut into strips, tiny piles of several dry cereals, raisins, a Cheestring and anything else she can find in the fridge or cupboard ! Similarly, give kids a choice - it may be toast all round but let them choose the toppings, from jam, Nutella, honey, peanut butter, cheese spread, Marmite or whatever else they can come up with, and they'll feel like they got to choose what was on the menu and will be more likely to eat it. The same goes for buying the little variety packs of cereal rather than one big like-it-or-lump-it box.

As for speeding things along, making it into a game will always work better than nagging. Rather than yell "have you STILL not finished getting dressed yet ?", try "race you to be the first one to finish getting ready" and you'll get a much better result ! And if you do run out of time, remember that many breakfasts can be eaten on the go, especially the individually wrapped ones like brioche rolls or breakfast biscuits so pop one in their coat pocket for the walk to school.

Try to mix things up too. You'd never dream of cooking the same thing for lunch or dinner week after week but that's what often happens for breakfast. Warburtons have some lovely recipes on their website and the Shake Up Your Wake Up website has even more so jazz things up in the mornings and you'll have everyone flocking to the table !

for more information :

Disclosure : We received a selection of Warburtons products and were asked to share our top tips for a stress-free breakfast routine.

Other blogposts you may be interested in :

#BreakfastWatch Day 4 : Muffins and Pancakes

Warburtons Brioche review

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