Sunny-Side Up: More Than 100 Breakfast & Brunch Recipes from the Essential Egg to the Perfect Pastry

Sunny-Side Up: More Than 100 Breakfast & Brunch Recipes from the Essential Egg to the Perfect Pastry

by Waylynn Lucas


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Breakfast and brunch recipes from the essential egg to the perfect pastry, from pastry chef and Cake Wars judge Waylynn Lucas.

Sunny-Side Up is about making delicious brunch and breakfast food with love and attention—whether it's a scrambled egg for one or a full-on champagne brunch buffet for a special occasion. And it's not an exclusive party for seasoned foodies. In fact, Waylynn considers it her responsibility as a trained pastry chef to make things less—not more—complicated for home cooks who want to make super-yummy breakfast delights in their own kitchen.

The book will feature more than 100 recipes and 100 photographs. Recipes run the gamut from decadent Grapefruit Pistachio Cakes and Almond Frangipane Pear Baked French Toast to on-the-go breakfast bars and yogurt pops to healthful Spinach, Roasted Red Pepper, and
Goat Cheese Frittatas, Avocado Pineapple Smoothies, and breakfast bowls. Fun brunch cocktails round out the recipes to make an all-occasion powerhouse of delicious and uplifting recipes.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781635653700
Publisher: Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony/Rodale
Publication date: 08/27/2019
Pages: 240
Sales rank: 308,102
Product dimensions: 8.20(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.90(d)

About the Author

Waylynn Lucas is the encouraging but honest judge on Food Network's Cake Wars, and former executive pastry chef of such notable restaurants as SLS Hotel in Beverly Hills, four-starred Bazaar by José Andrés, Joachim Splichal's Michelin-starred Patina, and the Penthouse Restaurant at the Huntley Hotel. She is also a former cast member of the Bravo show Eat, Drink, Love and CNBC's Restaurant Startup. Waylynn currently lives in Park City Utah, where she has founded a catering business called Butter and Barley.

Read an Excerpt


So many chefs have a thing with eggs. The egg is not just the basis of breakfast or baking—it’s the basis of life itself. When you hold one in your hand, you can’t help but want to protect it, and yet you try to break it by squeezing it. It’s stronger than it looks. I admit, I, too, really have a thing for eggs. They still surprise me and fascinate me after all these years in the kitchen. But one thing I know for certain about cooking eggs is that the secret to making them obsession-worthy is all in the handling. And that same handling is also the secret technique to successful cooking, baking . . . even relationships! 

The famous chef Auguste Escoffier said that of all the ingredients used in cooking, “not one is so fruitful of variety, so universally liked, and so complete in itself as an egg.” In other words, the egg is like the friend everyone loves. Whip it (although I wouldn’t suggest you do that to a friend) and you get meringue. Fold it into batter and make your cake fluffier and airier. Temper it into cream sauces and soups and magically make them thicker and silkier. Froth it and make a killer cocktail topping. Fry it sunny-side up and let it ooze onto buttered toast for a decadent feast that’ll run you about seventy-five cents. 

The unwritten (well, until now) rule is that how well you can cook an egg is a testament to how well you can cook. Chef Jacques Pépin (who has written twenty-six cookbooks, won multiple James Beard awards, and helmed several successful cooking shows) once said that he judges a chef by the way they make an omelet. His former costar on the show Cooking at Home, none other than Julia Child, described how her Cordon Bleu cooking instructor Max Bugnard used the “humble scrambled egg” as a lesson that “one pay attention, learn the correct technique, and that one enjoy one’s cooking.” So for me, the simple act of scrambling an egg is the foundation of all cooking and baking techniques. 

As I began to think about my cookbook, recipes for the far-out creative stuff I’m known for ran through my mind—fun pastries and desserts and crazy combinations like my Lemon Meringue Pie with Pop Rocks—but what I could not keep from taking over my cookbook brain was EGGS! Eggs in burritos. Eggs sandwiched between two waffles. Egg stratas and frittatas! Eggs scrambled on the stove and eaten standing up in the kitchen. And, of course, eggs sunny-side up! So what better way to celebrate the egg than with a breakfast cookbook?

But just in case you thought we were only cooking eggs, this cookbook also includes my favorite recipes for healthy powerhouses like smoothies, homemade yogurt, superfood bowls, oatmeal, and breakfast bars, as well as savory biscuits and breads and even cocktails for a little day drinking. One of the main reasons I love breakfast and brunch so much is that it’s the one meal where you can EAT DESSERT AS YOUR WHOLE MEAL! Muffins, French toast, pancakes, waffles, and cinnamon rolls aren’t just an OPTIONAL dessert when you eat them for breakfast. They ARE the meal! Think about it: at what other meal can you enjoy a flaky buttery croissant oozing with chocolate AND have a scrambled egg on the side? This is why I love you, breakfast. And this is why I must share your charms with the world.

Eggs plus baking plus baking with eggs—as a pastry chef and breakfast fanatic, it all just gets me beyond excited. In this book you’ll find super-easy recipes, recipes you can grab on the go or sip by the bar, and even a few superstar baking recipes that will turn you into a breakfastbaking and -cooking pro. I wanted to create a cookbook that wasn’t intimidating and wasn’t just for show. I wanted a cookbook for everyone, with straightforward simple ingredients you can find at your basic market, recipes that I love, and things that I want to do and eat everyday while putting my professional chef spin on things and giving some chef ’s tips along the way. 

Don’t stress over any of these recipes! I should know better than most that you don’t need to be “born a chef ” to become one. Believe it or not, my family used to tease me when I was growing up that I couldn’t boil water to save my life. My mother is an amazing cook, and food was at the center of our family’s daily life. At home, the Food Network was always on TV—I mean ALWAYS on the TV, morning, noon, and night. The old-school Food Network shows like Two Fat Ladies, Barefoot Contessa, and Nigella, just to name a few favorites. Going to restaurants was our version of family bonding. Vacations were planned around what meals we would eat and what restaurants we would visit. So I was immersed in the sumptuous world of food from an early age, but my aptitude for cooking was all but hidden.

There was one clue that I might make a good pastry chef, but at the time it presented itself only as an extremely irritating habit that drove my mother mad to watch. When I would eat my morning toast, I would spend five minutes evenly spreading the butter to all the edges, making sure no nook or cranny went unfilled. By the time I finished, the toast would be stone cold and my mother would be beyond annoyed at me. It wasn’t until many years later that in hindsight I was able to see that glimmer of the future pastry chef I would become—it was that need in me, that little touch of OCD, that was not going to eat even a piece of toast without having it properly buttered for maximum eating enjoyment! Every bite needed to be perfect. I carry that mentality into my desserts today, and it hasn’t failed me yet.

During the summers growing up, I always worked in restaurants. I worked every job, from dishwasher to busser to prep cook to hostess. I was in the world of food, but I had yet to find my place in it. I’d been led to believe working in the front-of-house positions was a step up from some of the menial work I’d done in the kitchen, but I found that working up front was not for me. I preferred the company of cooks and dishwashers to customers.

After a foray into the fashion industry, I moved to Costa Rica and fell in love with the little village where I was living. The only problem was, it needed a coffee shop. So I opened a coffee shop. At the same time, I started experimenting with recipes, and I loved the instant effect my baked goods had on people: they made people happy! So the coffee shop morphed into a bakery, I began creating all kinds of goodies to go with the coffee, and the happy little village was even happier with all the sweets I was churning out. Experiencing people’s positive reaction to my muffins and scones gave me an instant buzz. The connection between food and happiness I’d experienced with my family had come right back to the center of my daily life. This time I was the one making the magic, and I was hooked!

From Costa Rica, I was off to culinary school to learn the science and techniques of cooking and pastry making. My previously annoying attention to detail when it came to buttering my toast was now an advantage. It was and is in my personality to think beyond just getting a recipe finished—I think, HOW IS SOMEONE GOING TO ENJOY THIS? WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO MAKE SURE THEY HAVE THE BEST EXPERIENCE EATING THIS? On Cake Wars, for example, if the layers of a cake aren’t even or one layer has more frosting than another, you aren’t getting the perfect bite every time. My attention to detail does not always pan out well for the contestants, but even those bakers who do not share my OCD tendencies do share a desire that’s even more important: to create something that makes people happy.

Speaking of Cake Wars, it’s hard to describe the joy I have for getting that job. After all those years of growing up with Food Network, it truly is a huge dream come true—beyond huge, actually, and in a weird way, I’m seeing my life come full circle. I’m beyond blessed and grateful and still have to pinch myself. My mom is still obsessed with Food Network, and knowing I’m part of it makes me so proud.

So it’s been a journey to get to this point where I can share what I’ve learned, and I’m here to lead you through a baking and cooking adventure of your own that will have you making breakfast and brunch dishes, from eggs to fancy pastries, like a true chef.

As long as you are able to follow directions, you’re halfway there. The second half of my equation is the technique or the finesse, WHICH YOU ALSO DO NOT HAVE TO BE BORN WITH! Finesse is simply the art of using a delicate hand— handling with care, in other words. You can cook and bake without finesse, and what you make will probably still be pretty good. But if you can start adding a little finesse, your savory dishes and baked goods are going to go from good to amazing pretty quickly, and you’re going to love the process of getting better and better every time you make something as you’re able to pay more and more attention to the little details that will make all the difference.

Making eggs is the perfect way to practice your touch, your finesse. Handle the eggs gently, taking your time, allowing the egg to be itself . . . the whole process is kinda sexy, if you think about it. Have a mind-set of love, not angst. Treat your eggs and your baking lovingly, caressingly, following what Chef Bugnard said: pay attention, use the correct technique, and enjoy the process. Give all your cooking and baking this kind of mindfulness and love, and you will be a rock star in the kitchen, I promise. You’ll master scrambled eggs, biscuits, beignets, and beyond.

And that’s really what this book is all about: giving your dishes—whether it’s an egg sunny-side up, homemade Prosciutto-Gruyère Croissants (page 152), or simply a piece of thoroughly buttered toast—the same love and attention you’d give your best friend, your spouse, or your pet! When that’s what you give, you’ll be shocked and pleased by the yummy goodness you get back. What a great way to start (or finish) your day.

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