Easter is such a festive holiday – it is religious to some and a welcoming of spring to others. In the days past it was a time for new pastel dresses and flowery hats and shiny patent shoes.
The egg hunt is still my favorite! But what to do with all those found eggs?? Egg Salad Sandwiches, Deviled Eggs (my favorite recipe is below!), Cobb Salad, Potato or Pasta Salad.
Follow the egg hunt with a delicious brunch on this special Sunday enjoyed with your favorite friends and family.
For your brunch be sure to pick a menu that includes items you can make in advance so that you can enjoy the day. Buffet is the way to go! Set out a beautiful fruit salad drizzled with fresh lime juice mixed with a little honey and spike with some chopped mint. Accompany with Denver Breakfast Bake for a Crowd (a baked savory bread pudding like dish that you can prep the day beore and bake the morning of your party) and some grilled, fresh, first of the season asparagus. Quick, easy and delicious! Then move on to an afternoon of lounging conversation – what a way to welcome the coming of spring.
And for those celebrating the Jewish holiday of Passover this week my friend Jamie Peha has these suggestions for brunch: Matzo Brei (said Bry) A traditional dish for Passover brunch, this easy egg and matzo fry can be made sweet, topped with cinnamon sugar or jelly, or savory, with additions of your favorite vegetables and fresh herbs or or Farfel (Matzoh and egg dumplings – deep fried and served with Syrup or cinammon/sugar). Check out Martha Stewart for some great passover brunch ideas on her site.
“Denver” Breakfast Bake for a Crowd
serves 6 – 8
2 Tbsp. butter or olive oil
3/4 cup diced onion
1 1/2 cups chopped, mixed red and green bell peppers
1 Tbsp. minced fresh garlic
3 cups half & half
1 tsp. salt
1/4 tsp. black pepper
8 cups 1-inch-diced hearty French bread
1 1/2 cups chopped ham
2 cups (8 ounces) coarsely grated cheddar cheese
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
In a large sauté pan heat the butter or olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the onions and peppers and sauté until three-quarters cooked, about 4 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for 30 seconds more. Remove from heat and set aside.
In a large bowl whisk together the eggs, half & half, salt and pepper until well combined. Add the bread, ham, cooled vegetable mixture, cheddar cheese and half of the Parmesan cheese. Place in an 11 x 13-inch baking pan. Sprinkle the remaining Parmesan over the top, and let sit, refrigerated, at least 1 hour or preferably overnight, so that bread soaks up egg mixture.
When ready to serve, bake in a preheated 350-degree oven for approximately 45 – 50 minutes or until puffy and golden and a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.
© 2009 Kathy Casey Food Studios
Chipotle Deviled Eggs
Makes 24 stuffed eggs
1 dozen large eggs
3 tablespoons regular or low-fat sour cream
3 tablespoons mayonnaise
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon Dijon mustard, optional
1 to 2 tablespoons chipotle chile purée*
1 teaspoon minced garlic
2 tablespoons very thinly sliced green onion
1/2 cup diced (1/4-inch) tomatoes
1 tablespoon minced white onion
2 tablespoons minced fresh cilantro
1 to 2 teaspoons chipotle chile purée*
Place eggs in a saucepan and cover with cool water to 1 inch above eggs. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, then 10 minutes. After eggs have cooked for 10 minutes, remove from the heat and run cool water over them. When eggs are cool, carefully peel under running water.
Cut the eggs in half lengthwise and remove the yolks to a mixing bowl. Set the egg white halves on a platter, cover, and refrigerate.
Mash the yolks to a smooth consistency with a fork or potato masher. Mix in the sour cream, mayonnaise, salt, mustard, 1 to 2 tablespoons chipotle purée, and garlic until smooth. Stir in the green onions. Spoon the yolk mixture into a pastry bag fitted with a plain or large star tip and then squeeze (pipe) the mixture evenly into the egg white halves.
To make the topping: In a small bowl, mix together tomatoes, onion, cilantro, and chipotle purée. Top each egg half with 1 teaspoon of the tomato mixture.
*To make chipotle purée: Place 1 can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce in blender and purée until smooth. Freeze any remaining purée for another use.
Recipe from Dishing with Kathy Casey: Food, Fun & Cocktails from Seattle’s Culinary Diva, Sasquatch Books, Seattle. Copyright © 2002 by Kathy Casey.