Late Winter Brunch

Let the bright morning sun shine through the windows during this casual weekend party. Winter is the perfect time for a breakfast-style brunch.

By FamilyTime


By this time of year, winter is waning and everyone is looking forward to spring. But icy winds still blow and the ground is still too frozen for weekend gardeners to tackle. This means many of us feel restless.

Why not provide an antidote to cabin fever by inviting friends over for a casual brunch party? Everyone loves fresh fruit, juice, eggs, muffins, and strong hot coffee. Most of all, we love getting together and catching up.

Frittatas and Waffles
When you examine the menu for this brunch, you may decide not to make both a frittata and waffles. But we give you the option.

Brunch food is indulgent and brunch spreads are generous. This means, you might want to offer guests a choice of one or the other - or both.

Frittatas are easy prepare ahead and serve warm. Waffles, on the other hand, need to be cooked right in front of your guests. By serving both, you have the convenience of planning ahead (frittata) and the fun of culinary performance (waffles).

Bread and Butter
Home baked breads and muffins are wonderful for brunch menus. We suggest one of each. The bread is a quick bread and not a yeast bread and so is as easy to mix and bake as muffins.

You may not be able to find plums for the bread. If not, substitute nectarines or peaches, or make another bread, such as banana bread.

You can choose to scrape the muffin batter into a loaf pan and bake it as quick bread.

Serve these breads with soft, creamy butter and sweet condiments such as honey and marmalade. If you still have homemade plum jam or raspberry preserves from last summer in the cupboard, now is the time to open them. A taste of the warm months to come.

It's easy to soften a stick of butter and then flavor it with orange zest (cut from the colored portion of the orange rind) and a sprinkling of sugar or a drop or two of honey. What a treat!

Nothing signifies the meal to come more than the aroma of freshly brewed coffee. When it mingles with the scent of homemade muffins and bread, everyone feels cared for and safe.

Coffee and Tea
Make great coffee for your guests. This means grinding the beans yourself, if possible, or at least buying freshly ground ones from a nearby coffee emporium.

Offer guests tea, too. Try brewing it fresh - the way it should be served. Buy loose tea or at least quality tea bags and make a pot of tea. Serve it with a choice of milk (never cream for tea!), sugar, and lemon slices.

Some of your guests will welcome a bloody mary, mimosa, or other alcoholic drink on a frosty morning. You don't have to offer these, but if you do, make them fresh and delicious by perking up the bloody marys with Tabasco and garnishing them with celery stalks. Make the mimosas with fresh squeezed orange juice.

When you're squeezing the oranges for juice, squeeze plenty. Everyone loves it, with or without Champagne.