For a decadent breakfast, nothing beats eggs Benedict. Will I be served the restaurant classic in bed on Motherís Day morning? Probably not. And thatís just fine with me.

Actually, Iíd be thrilled with a repeat of last yearís Motherís Day meal, prepared by my 11-year-old daughter, Lexi. She made me the most adorable buttermilk pancakes, fashioned into a smiley face and embellished with strawberry freezer jam we made together the previous summer. And what presentation! Clean dish rags lined her serving tray, which also included a container of Jell-O and a vase of fresh picked flowers. I get misty just thinking about it.

However, sheís a year older, and assures me she is up for a bigger challenge. Wouldnít you know, I happened upon a scaled-down version of my favorite breakfast. Itís called Eggs Benedict Casserole.

It features all the traditional ingredients yet requires just one dish for baking and serving.

It also has a spicy twist. No surprise since it is a recipe from Tabasco. If your family doesnít like heat, limit the amount or opt out altogether.

Lexi wants to give it a shot. I canít wait, and will no doubt be moved to tears. From the effort ó and possibly the spice.



EGGS BENEDICT CASSEROLE

6 cups French bread, cut into cubes

12 large eggs

1 1/2 cups milk

3 tablespoons fresh chives, chopped

1 teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons Tabasco Sauce, optional

12 ounces Canadian bacon, chopped

1 (9-ounce) package Hollandaise sauce

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Place French bread cubes in buttered, 8-cup shallow casserole dish. Beat eggs, milk, chives, salt and 2 teaspoons Tabasco sauce in large bowl; stir in Canadian bacon. Pour over bread cubes. Let mixture stand 5 minutes. Bake 40 minutes or until mixture is puffed and set. Meanwhile, prepare Hollandaise sauce as package directs. Keep warm until ready to use. Serve casserole with warm Hollandaise sauce. Makes: 6-8 servings.

Tabasco