Monday, August 19, 2013

Sunday Brunch

From my column in the Petaluma Post:

Who doesn’t love a lazy Sunday morning, is there anything more relaxing than brunch? Fifty one weeks of the year the answer is no, until that one morning in May.  Mother’s Day!  You want to make that one person feel like a queen, so the pressure is on.  But brunch can still be simple.  Here are a few of my favorite and easy recipes to add to your brunch menu.

Personal Frittatas
This is a great item that you can make with the kids; by using a muffin pan each person can make their own.  Kids might like to stay with ham and cheese, but my favorite is asparagus and goat cheese.  This gets everyone a little involved in the kitchen and somehow that personal sized item just adds a little something extra to the impression.  Of course you could just make up a variety in advance and have them ready to go; they hold in the refrigerator well and be easily re-warmed in the microwave.

Start with a muffin pan well sprayed with Pam.

18 eggs, blended
1 cup heavy cream
2 tsp salt
½ tsp black pepper

Use anything you like, but I’m always a fan asparagus tips, sautéed mushrooms, goat cheese, grated cheese, chopped ham, and prosciutto.

Allow each person to place their choice in one or two muffin cups, but do not overfill, then add the egg mixture to each up cup to about ¾ full.  Bake at 350 degrees for 12 to 15 minutes till fluffy and firm.  Remove from the oven and allow to cool 5 minutes then turn out.  You can return to the oven to keep them warm.

Corn Bread Waffles
with honey, mascarpone and strawberries

I’ve only recently been introduced to cornbread waffles, and I think I may like them better than regular waffles.  The use of cornmeal in these waffles adds a great bit of texture and makes them a bit more sturdy.   My sister came across them on Pinterest, topped with chili; which I tried for dinner just the other night.  But for brunch I’d recommend something a bit more breakfast like strawberries and mascarpone.  After the frittatas come out of the oven you can turn the oven off and use it to hold the waffles.

Cornbread waffles

Yield 3-4 waffles
1 cup flour
1 cup cornmeal
1Tbl baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 eggs
1 cup milk
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup oil

Combine the dry ingredients, then add the wet ingredients.  You want it to be a bit on the thin side.  Preheat the waffle iron to medium heat, and place approximately ¾ cup of batter per waffle.

Strawberry Topping
4 cup sliced strawberries
1 orange zest and juice
2 Tbl honey
Mix together and allow the flavors to blend for 10 to 15 minutes.

Plus about ½ cup mascarpone, plus honey to drizzle.  Simply spread each waffle with mascarpone, top with strawberries and drizzle with honey.

Blueberry Sour Cream Muffins
Yield 12-18 medium sized muffins
This is another great recipe to try with the kids.  The use of oil in the recipe makes it very quick to stir up, and can be used for muffins or coffee cake.  In fact this is the recipe that I use with the Rainbow Girls (the youth group I’m involved in) every year for their coffee cake fundraiser; if you been fortunate to get one in the past you know how good they are.  They also freeze very well, so keep it mind come the holidays in case you want to do some baking.

¾ cup flour
1 cup sugar
2 tsp baking powder
¼ tsp baking soda
3 eggs
1 cup sour cream
½ cup vegetable oil
1 tsp vanilla
1 cup blue berries
If using frozen blueberries, toss in about 1 tablespoon of flour to coat to prevent their color from bleeding into the batter.

Combine the eggs, sour cream and vegetable oil, and mix until eggs are blended.  Combine the dry ingredients, then add the wet ingredients.  Fold in blue berries, and scoop into lined muffin cups.  Bake at 350 degree for 15 to 18 minutes.

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