Midnight Breakfast Parfaits

Dear Mom,

Thank you for always buying me new clothes at the start of the school year. I know my new clothes often meant you went without.

Thank you for making me enroll in typing my freshman year of high school despite my adamant protests. Typing is a skill I use nearly every day, and I can’t imagine having to peck out emails, documents, and blog posts key stroke by single key stroke.

Thank you for not making me enroll in typing II. One semester was enough.

Thank you for coming to all of my volleyball and basketball games, and in my springs of experimentation, track meets and softball games.

Thank you for paying for my college tuition. A college education is the single most valuable thing I have ever received. Not just because it literally was expensive, but because college taught me how to really think.

Thank you for not getting upset in front of me when I moved away. I’m sure it was hard to watch your child drive about as far south as she could. I wanted to get away from snowy, gray winters, not get away from you.

Thank you for letting me use your ticket to the first Ohio State vs. Penn State game after Penn State joined the Big 10. I was practically frozen and deafened when I left the stadium, but I still remember that night.

Thank you for letting me use your ticket to the 1995 Ohio State vs. Notre Dame game. It was even better than the Penn State game.

Thank you for not getting overly pissed off when I pierced my ears multiple times and then pierced my tongue. As I’m sure I reassured you multiple times, these were just phases and today I wear a very socially acceptable one pair of earrings. It really wasn’t the piercings that should have been a concern. It was the tattoo you should have raised hell about.

Oh wait, you did raise hell about the tattoo. In that case, thank you for loving me for me and not for what I look like.

Thank you for letting me quit the school band even though you really liked band when you were in school.

Thank you for driving Kristin and I to dance lessons every week. And thank you for driving us through the McDonald’s drive-thru for cookies and orange drinks afterwards!!

Thank you for cooking a meal for your family nearly every night and for doing the laundry every week.

Thank you for helping me with ideas for my 4-H club presentation. I’m pretty sure I’m the only person in the history of our 4-H  club that gave a presentation about the importance of wearing sunscreen to prevent skin cancer.

Thank you for being patient when I refused to wear anything with a flower pattern or bows.

Thank you for trusting me to make my own decisions and having the courage to let me fail when you knew those decisions were not right.

Thank you, Mom, for everything I haven’t remembered to say thank you for.

Love, Me

Midnight Breakfast Parfaits

When I was very young – think elementary-school age – I used to make my mom breakfast in bed for Mother’s Day. Thinking back, this makes me laugh because the breakfasts I served could not have been anywhere near good. Breakfast definitely consisted of a bowl of Cheerios and toast, but I don’t remember what else I made.

I can’t imagine those Cheerios were anything but soggy and the toast anything but cold by the time I carried it up to her room. I thought I was surprising Mom with breakfast in bed on Mother’s Day, although I’m sure she heard me banging around in the kitchen  and used the ample warning to steel herself for a few bites of soggy cereal and cold toast.

I have no idea what possessed me to do such a thing like serve Mom breakfast in bed, and I don’t know why I quit. Probably because as I got older, she woke up before me up in the mornings, or I realized I wasn’t such a great cook. At any rate, I brought the tradition back today and made Mom a virtual breakfast in bed.

Called a Midnight Breakfast in the Sweet & Skinny cookbook, this dish is half breakfast (cereal and bananas) and half dessert (ice cream and caramel sauce) and meant to be eaten as a midnight snack. I wrote the recipe below as seen in the cookbook, but I also played around with it a bit at home, using various caramel and chocolate sauces, and substituting Kahlua for bourbon in a few parfaits. All of the versions were delicious.

Happy Mother’s Day, Mom! Thanks for all you do.

Midnight Breakfast Parfaits
  • For the Coffee-Bourbon Caramel Sauce
  • 1 cup sugar
  • ½ cup water, divided
  • 2½ teaspoons instant espresso (or coffee) powder
  • ¼ cup heavy cream
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon bourbon
  • ⅛ teaspoon salt
  • Bananas
  • Vanilla Ice Cream
  • Cap'n Crunch cereal
  1. Place the sugar and ¼ cup of the water in a small saucepan and stir until the sugar is moistened.
  2. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat.
  3. When the sugar is fully dissolved (the mixture will be clear), raise the heat and continue to cook for 5-10 minutes until the mixture is a deep caramel color.
  4. While the mixture cooks, dissolve the instant espresso (or coffee) powder in the remaining ¼ cup of water.
  5. Remove the caramelized sugar mixture from the heat and pour in the dissolved coffee mixture and the heavy cream. The mixture will sputter and bubble when the cream and coffee mixtures are added, so be careful.
  6. Stir in the milk, bourbon, and salt until well combined.
  7. Set aside to cool.
  8. When the caramel sauce is warm (no longer hot), stir in some banana slices.
  9. Place the caramel sauce and banana slices in a parfait (or wine or other) glass.
  10. Top with ice cream, another layer of caramel sauce and banana slices, and Cap'n Crunch cereal.

Related posts: