Cinnamon Breakfast Pie

cinnamon breakfast christmas pie insolence + wine

A few years ago, we had a holiday potluck at work and my co-worker brought this delicious breakfast pie for everyone to enjoy. Before she left for a new job, I begged her for this recipe, needing this for my own selfish reasons. Growing up, my grandmother made these German Apple Pancakes, which are still one of my favorite holiday traditions, but this breakfast pie won my heart (and stomach) over the first time I tried it. 

This recipe is a bit of work, but the great news is it can be put together the night before so all you have to do is throw it into the oven on Christmas morning for everyone to enjoy prior to opening presents. My family has quickly taken to this recipe, enjoying it while we watch Miracle on 34th Street on Christmas morning. This recipe yields 2 pies.

Cinnamon Breakfast Pie

for the dough:

  • 1 package active dry yeast
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus 1 tablespoon
  • 1 cup warm water (I stick it in the microwave for about two minutes)
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 4 tablespoons butter, melted
  • 3 tablespoons light olive oil

for the filling:

  • 2 cups ricotta cheese
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • finely grated zest from 1 orange
  • juice from 1/2 lemon

for the streusel:

  • 2/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/3 cup firmly packed brown sugar
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks

For the dough, in the bowl of a stand mixer, dissolve the yeast and 1 tablespoon of the granulated sugar in the warm water and let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. Add the 1/2 cup granulated sugar, flour, salt, melted butter, egg and oil. Attach the paddle attachment and beat until combined. The dough will be very sticky. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for about an hour.

Preheat the oven to 375º and generously grease two pie pans.

To prepare the filling, in bowl, mix together the egg yolks, ricotta, granulated sugar, flour, cinnamon, cardamom, orange zest and lemon juice.

cinnamon breakfast christmas pie insolence + wine

For the streusel, mix together the flour, sugars, cinnamon, cardamom. Add the butter and either using a pastry cutter or two knives, cut the butter into the mixture until it looks like chunky crumbs.

cinnamon christmas breakfast pie insolence + wine

With wet hands, divide the dough between the prepared pans. It will be very sticky. Press it evenly into each pan and up the sides to create a bowl shape. The dough is going to be difficult to work with, so it may not be even, but try your best! Divide the filling between the pans, then top each with half of the streusel. Bake until golden and bubbly, 30-40 minutes. Let cool 20 minutes prior to serving.

cinnamon christmas breakfast pie insolence + wine

Serve with sparkling wine for a festive brunch!