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Old 11-20-2012, 11:39 AM   #1
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Brunch Menu?

Hi gang! It's that time again-- I need you to weigh in (ha ha) on a brunch I'm planning. It's for December, but since everyone is in the food-cooking mood with your Thanksgiving, I thought I could grab some of that brainpower

The one thing I *don't* want is for anyone (namely, my DH) to stand in the kitchen making eggs, bacon, etc. I want to have everything pre-prepared (did I just invent that? ) so we can all just sit around and gorge and lounge, etc.

I'm sort of at a loss as to whether this is enough, and enough in each of the "categories".
Oh, and I'm prepping (mentally) early b/c of course, I'll be in CA the week before this happens, so if I can make anything early, I'll have to. I'll have the full Saturday before the brunch to prepare as well.

Drinks:
Mimosas
Bloody Mary (or Sangrita, which is similar but used as a chaser for Tequila)
Coffee, tea (cuz, you know... I got tea!)

Apps:
  • various cheeses, dips/spreads, hearty breads (maybe a roasted pepper hummus, curried egg salad, flavored cream cheese)
  • bagels
  • lox (smoked salmon)
  • cream cheese

Mains:
  • some sort of frittata (I think I saw a recipe for smoked salmon and leeks? or should I leave the smoked salmon to the bagels/cream cheese)
  • texas onion/cheese pie (like a quiche, but focus is on the onions/cheese)
  • mini quiches-- maybe goat cheese and spinach, and a ham or bacon one?
  • I'm thinking a sausage "strata" as well, if I can find a recipe
  • do I need a salad?
a Venezuelan friend is going to bring either arepas or empanadas so excited!

Desserts:
I saw my old oatmeal cookie recipe, and I really want to make it
I need some sort of cake, since this is my birthday celebration with friends
I was thinking of cinnamon rolls made from pizza dough, so I don't have to deal with yeast

what am I missing?

thanks gang!
S.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:02 PM   #2
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Soren, I vote for a pear galette for dessert - no yeast and gorgeous. I say this having seen and tasted one but never having made it.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:03 PM   #3
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That all sounds yummy!! How 'bout a fresh fruit salad of sorts?
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:20 PM   #4
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OOOH good call, both of you!

Pear or apple, I do have a great recipe I haven't made in AGES for a tarte (?) that has some almond paste at the bottom... I've been dying to make it!

And yes, a fruit salad! I was thinking of it and then forgot. Maybe I can add some dried cranberries to it, for a little texture.

I'll also have my holiday treats (that I give away) ready, so I can give out some loot bags I'm making some sort of fancy fudge, and bourbon balls (both from a betty crocker holiday cookbook I found on sale )

Can you tell I'm soooooo excited!?! Or is it the down-day caffeine kicking in today?
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:23 PM   #5
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I haven't yet but I have been dying to try one of the crock pot steel cut overnight oatmeal recipes - they are full of fruit and could be a nice complement. Would probably smell heavenly.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:45 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sorenkkg View Post
OOOH good call, both of you!

Pear or apple, I do have a great recipe I haven't made in AGES for a tarte (?) that has some almond paste at the bottom... I've been dying to make it!

And yes, a fruit salad! I was thinking of it and then forgot. Maybe I can add some dried cranberries to it, for a little texture.

I'll also have my holiday treats (that I give away) ready, so I can give out some loot bags I'm making some sort of fancy fudge, and bourbon balls (both from a betty crocker holiday cookbook I found on sale )

Can you tell I'm soooooo excited!?! Or is it the down-day caffeine kicking in today?
Oh, my! Bourbon balls, how I love, love, love them. Making them is fun too. Could be the obligitory shot of bourbon while working on them.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:54 PM   #7
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I would stick with one salmon dish (either the lox/bagel combo OR the frittata). I also was looking for fruit.

Is anyone LC going to be there? Maybe some HB eggs in a pretty bowl or something, or devilled eggs.

For your cheese selection, I'm dying over a cranberry chevre I got at TJs. There's also a really nice cranberry/cheddar at Costco (though I don't know if they have either of those stores in Canada, but something similar could be found elsewhere I'm sure).

A nice quinoa or rice pilaf or salad would be good. If you're doing a fresh fruit salad, I wouldn't worry about a veggie salad or vice versa.

Love how I'm trying to pile all this extra stuff on you? That's because I envy your cooking/hostessing abilities.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:57 PM   #8
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as delicious as curried egg salad is, there is something about devilled eggs that just can't be beat. they are pretty much always the first thing to disappear.
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Old 11-20-2012, 01:08 PM   #9
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I agree with the deviled eggs-- I just LOATHE peeling them.

Dawn-- I'm always up for a challenge
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Old 11-20-2012, 02:43 PM   #10
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Soren, I hear you about peeling eggs. BUT my mom gave me a never-fail method a couple of years ago, and it truly does work like magic EVERY time! Here it is:

Place eggs in bottom of pan and cover with water. Add 1 tsp salt.
Bring to a rolling boil, and remove from heat right away.
Cover pan and leave for 30 minutes.
Drain water out and shake pan back and forth, like the old-fashioned way to pop popcorn.
Rinse with cold water, and peel under slowly running faucet.
Remember to start peeling at the membrane (larger) end of the egg. Once you get under that pocket of air, the peel just slides off in big hunks.

If you try this, let me know what you think!
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Old 11-20-2012, 03:03 PM   #11
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LCG-- thanks for the tip!

I've tried salt, and baking soda (have some better luck with that)-- but I think what I'm missing is this-- peel the eggs while they're still warm, as you indicate above.

I like to boil the eggs, then put them in the fridge in the shell-- I figure they keep longer, no?
So I'm trying to find the method that allows for easy-off shells once they are cooled.

However, for a recipe like deviled eggs, I can see peeling them right away

S.
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Old 11-20-2012, 03:21 PM   #12
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ME, I am missing from this event!
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Old 11-20-2012, 03:29 PM   #13
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Fruit salad and blintzes? Challah French toast? I don't know... the menu sounds amazing as is.
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Old 11-20-2012, 03:33 PM   #14
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soren, try blowing the egg out of the shell! I've done it and it really works!!
Here is a link to a video showing you how. You will need to scroll down to find the video(past the pictures).

How to Blow the Shell off a Hard Boiled Egg: 8 steps

Enjoy! It's fun!!
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Old 11-20-2012, 08:30 PM   #15
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This is THE BEST make ahead brunch recipe I have ever tried. It is a strata and while this one is sweet, I've done it with ham and cheese, too. I usually use sliced sourdough bread instead of french bread and add cinnamon. I also make whipped cream to go with. It's pretty rich - I would cut into 12-16 pieces - not 6-8. You can make it lactose free and sub goat cheese and almond milk. Always a winner.

French Toast Strata
Ingredients:

8 cups French bread cut into small cubes - no crust (approx one loaf)
1 8 oz pkg. cream cheese
8 large eggs
2 1/2 cups half and half
5 tablespoons butter or margarine, melted
1/4 cup maple syrup ( honey or various fruit syrups)
1 tablespoon vanilla

Directions:

Slice French bread and cut into 1/2 inch cubes. Layer half of the bread cubes into a greased 13 by 9 inch baking dish. Cut cream cheese into 1/4 inch cubes and spread evenly over bread layer. Add remaining bread cubes. Combine half and half, eggs, melted butter and syrup until thoroughly mixed; pour evenly over bread and cheese cubes. Press surface with a spatula to thoroughly saturate all bread cubes. You can prepare this the evening before. Cover and refrigerate overnight.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees and bake on the middle rack for 35 to 45 minutes or until the center is raised and set and the top is golden. Remove from the oven and cut into 6 to 8 portions to serve. Serve with warm maple syrup or mix a can of pie filling with a bottle of fruit syrup or develop your own topping. It's wonderful!
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:42 PM   #16
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Ooooh.... yummy!
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Old 11-20-2012, 09:53 PM   #17
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Note-- do not go to epicurious in search of more recipes on a DD.

I'm more confused now than before, there's SO MUCH I want to make (read: eat)
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