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posted: 2/26/2013 6:00 AM

A wake-up call for dinner menus

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  • Italian-Style Stuffed French toast is a savory twist on the classic breakfast/brunch staple.

      Italian-Style Stuffed French toast is a savory twist on the classic breakfast/brunch staple.
    Deb Lindsey/The Washington Post

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By Bonnie S. Benwick
The Washington Post

Of all the niche-subject cookbooks that have crossed our desks recently -- on kinky cookies, miracle berries and seaweeds, and we are not making those up -- the breakfast-for-dinner category seems most promising. Who hasn't tucked into a stack of hot cakes or a silky omelet after dark?

A savvy book editor and a pair of millennial food lovers joined forces to create "Breakfast for Dinner: Recipes for Frittata Florentine, Huevos Rancheros, Sunny-Side-Up Burgers, and More!" (Quirk Books, February 2013; $19.95).

Co-authors Lindsay Landis and Taylor Hackbarth collaborate on the six-year-old LoveandOliveOil.com blog, which chronicles the married couple's cooking exploits in their Nashville loft.

They represent a new breed of food writers who develop non-intimidating recipes and produce killer food photography to boot. Landis is smart enough to use the light from a wall of windows and keep the visual setups simple. (If you have a penchant for spoons, you'll be happy.) Hackbarth eats, preps and does the dishes. This is a part-time gig for both: The one that pays the bill is their graphics and Web design business.

For "Breakfast," their goal was to riff on favorites with flavors they like, which translates often among the cookbook's 57 recipes to a shift from sweet to savory. Their French toast is stuffed with innards normally associated with manicotti. Some creations made the cut because they call for breakfast-friendly ingredients, such as the grapefruit that gives creamy risotto an unexpected yet welcome acidity. Appetizers, drinks and desserts get their due.

The recipes may not all be novel, but the overall collection merits return trips. And the notion of breakfast for dinner will never get old.

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