Monday, March 25, 2013

Easy Easter Brunch

Luke and I are breakfast fans (can you tell?), so this weekend I hosted an Easter brunch & lawn games party with some friends. The best thing about this menu? Everything can be prepared a day or two before and then heated, meaning you can have a relaxing morning. For a more lunch-like meal, you could add ham, potatoes au gratin and maybe sub in some fresh made rolls for the cinnamon rolls.

  • Artichoke dip with pita chips and bell peppers (This Martha Stewart one was lovely, though I subbed in half the canned artichokes for marinated ones from the antipasti bar at Whole Foods Market)
  • Bacon and Asparagus Quiche (recipe below)
  • Deviled Eggs with Truffle Salt (recipe to come this week!)
  • Spring Greens Salad with Shaved Parmigiano Reggiano (6 ounces of your favorite greens with lemon zest and juice, good olive oil, salt and pepper, lightly toasted pine nuts and plenty of shaved parm)
  • Cinnamon Rolls (I made this recipe from The Pioneer Woman - I made a half recipe and froze the unbaked rolls so I have an instant breakfast component next week almost ready) I'll be honest, these weren't the knock-out winner I'd hoped for (they were a bit dense and desserty), so I'll probably try another recipe next time
  • Fresh Fruit
  • Mango Mimosas (Juice Ataulfo mangos, add a little water for mixability, add desired amount of Champagne - done!)
  • Bloody Maries (we're Zing Zang fans in our house - what's your mix of choice? Or, do you go whole hog and make it all yourself?)

Bacon and Asparagus Quiche 

1 pie crust (I'm a fan of William's Sonoma basic pie dough recipe)
1/2 pound asparagus
olive oil
Salt and pepper to taste
4 pieces bacon
1/3 cup sun dried tomatoes packed in olive oil, chopped into bite-sized pieces
1 cup freshly grated sharp white cheddar (goat cheese would be delicious too!)
4 eggs
1 cup whole milk

Preheat oven to 400.

Prepare your pie crust and place in pie dish, then stick in the fridge for safe keeping.

Meanwhile, trim off woody ends of asparagus then chop into 1 1/2 inch pieces. Place on a baking sheet and drizzle with olive oil, salt and pepper - toss to combine. Lay out bacon on another foil-lined baking sheet. Roast asparagus for 25 minutes, tossing once. Cook bacon about 15 minutes (will vary based on how thick-cut it is) until almost crunchy. Set both aside to cool off, and put bacon on a paper towel-lined plate, then crumble once cooled. Place asparagus and bacon in a bowl with tomatoes.

Lower oven temp to 350.

Take out your pie dish and put asparagus mixture inside, then sprinkle evenly with cheese.

In a medium bowl, whisk together eggs and milk. Pour milk mixture over the veggies, which should just cover them. Bake quiche for 50 minutes until set, then let cool at least 15 minutes before tucking in. I refrigerated mine once it was completely cooled, then reheated the next morning at 350 for about 25 minutes.

There's a story behind the ax - I won't go into it...

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