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Friday, December 21, 2007

Sunday Holiday Brunch

The holidays are a hard time to get together with friends; between work parties, family and shopping, it seems nobody has time anymore. That’s where the brunch option comes in handy. By and large, most happenings are planned in the evening, but don’t overlook the mid-morning champagne hour. This is a great time to show off the variety in your party planning abilities.

Today's menu consists of mini quiches,fennel salad and Mediterranean flat bread. There are a few nibbles I like to set out such as my spicy nuts and chex mix just the sheer classic holiday feel. Beautiful fruit tarts ended the soirée.

To begin the quiches, I wanted something different than the normal pastry crust, so went rummaging in the refrigerator for a base. Taking a basic russet potato, I grated it, tossed it with salt, pepper and and egg. I took this mixture and pressed it into the bottoms and up the sides of the cups of a muffin pan. Bake this until the potatoes begin to brown slightly. Baking this ahead of time helps soften the spuds and get a crispy base going.
Now mix eggs, cream, salt and pepper. Pour this mixture in to the muffin cups. Add shredded cheese and whatever extras you like; here again I used bacon, onions and peppers. I personally like these items slightly sauteed ahead of time and of course your bacon should be pre-cooked. These cups will puff up and look delicious, so serve right from the oven; as they will settle a bit after cooling off.

This fennel salad is a fun, light and different type of salad perfect for the mid-day party. Slice a fresh fennel thin, place into a shallow baking dish. Grate the outside of the orange over the fennel, then peel the orange and segment, add to fennel. Now add a mixture of green and black olives to the fennel; then toss with olive oil. Bake this in the oven for about 15 minutes then broil for another 5. I like adding bit of Parmesan cheese on top just before serving.

Fruit tart and flat bread recipe to come.

Having coffee and Baily's is good starter to help your guests wake up. A few good bottles of Prosecco is a nice finishing touch with the fruit tarts. Enjoy!

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