Personal Chefs in the Media
THE LACONIA CITIZEN
Wednesday, March 27, 2002
EASTER BRUNCH BUFFET…
QUICK LIKE A BUNNY!
Want a great way to enjoy Easter Sunday with your family and friends? Want to entertain, but don’t wantto spend the whole time in the kitchen? Here are some wonderful ideas to make a delicious Easter Brunch that can all be prepared ahead of time!
Here’s the menu……
SMOKED TROUT on CORN BREAD CRACKERS
HONEYDEW MELON & CANTELOUPE
Topped with goat cheese and wrapped with proscuitto
ASSORTED BREADS AND MUFFINS
COFFEE, JUICE, PUNCH
And this can all be prepared a day or two ahead of time, giving you the day to enjoy,
and your guests will love it!
QUICHE Let’s start with the quiche, as this will hold up very well for two or three days. You can even freeze it if you like. For real simple preparation, start with ready made pie crusts…. use the refrigerated kind that you unfold for best results, or even a frozen one, in the tin can be made to look great…. once it thaws…make your own "crimping" on the edges, to give it that "homemade" touch. Fill the shell with your favorite combinations. You’ll want to have a few for your guests to choose from. My favorites are Bacon & Caramelized Onion, Salmon Cream Cheese & Dill, and Tomato and Herb (remember to squeeze the juice from the tomatoes) Use any combo of cheese that you like…Cheddar, Gruyere, Swiss, Jack, Muenster. Get creative!! I don’t like to skimp on the cheese. Use 1 ½ to 2 cups. Once the shell is full of great ingredients, beat eggs with cream (about 4 large eggs with 1 cup of half and half should fill one pie pan. Pour egg mixture over filling. A sprinkling of parsley on top adds a nice touch. Bake at 375 degrees for about 30-40 minutes, until center is set. Cool completely, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
ROASTED RED BLISS POTATOES No peeling…phew! Just wash the potatoes and cut into bite-size pieces. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Place in a baking pan (I use a 13x9 Pyrex type baking dish). Melt 3 Tbsp butter, and then add 3 Tbsp olive oil. Drizzle potatoes with the olive oil and butter mixture. Add your favorite herbs. Try garlic and rosemary, or fresh thyme and basil. Dried herbs will work well, too. Toss to coat. Roast for about 30 minutes, turning occasionally, until a bit under-done. Cool, cover, refrigerate.
FRUIT SALAD This is one of those dishes that are actually BETTER the next day! Just walk through your local produce department and choose items that are fresh and fragrant. Avoid bananas and apples, as they will turn color and be unappealing.
ASSORTED BREADS AND MUFFINS If you are lucky enough, as I am, to have guests that call ahead of time to see what they can bring, this is the thing. Just say, "Sure, I’d love it if you could bring your favorite muffins or bread!" This gives your guests the option of making it him or herself, or picking up something fresh at the bakery. Otherwise, you can do the same
APPETIZERS (Assembly only, no cooking)
SMOKED TROUT on Cornbread Crackers with horseradish sauce
Smoked trout, the crackers and the sauce can all be purchased at your local supermarket. For the trout, just peel off the skin on the back, and cut into bite size pieces. Remove any small bones that you see. (Use a purchased sauce in a jar, or make your own using one part sour cream, one part mayonnaise. Add horseradish to taste, along with some fresh chives or parsley and salt.) Spread the cracker with a bit of sauce, top with a piece of trout, and you’re done!
MELON & PROSCUITTO w/ goat cheese
Cut Honeydew and Cantaloupe into bite size pieces, maybe 1" x 2". Top each piece of melon with a small piece of soft goat cheese (the kind that you can buy in a log) Wrap each piece with a small piece of proscuitto, usually one slice that is cut in half or in thirds. Place seam-side down on platters. (These colors look great on black or green plates) You can make this appetizer ahead of time, too, just top with a damp paper towel, and then plastic wrap, so that the proscuitto does not dry out.
OK…you are ready. Get a good nights’ rest and awake on Easter morning with no stress!
Just an hour before your guests arrive, put the sausage into the oven to heat (according to package directions) Drain on paper towels, and cover with foil to keep warm. Next, heat your quiche and potatoes, uncovered. 375-degree oven for about 20 minutes should do it.
Set up a juice bar. Put juice out in pretty pitchers, or make a punch of several juices mixed. Have an ice bucket, an assortment of glasses, and chilled champagne on ice. Guests can make their own "mimosa".
Now set out your appetizers. Don’t forget cocktail napkins for both. Melon and proscuitto should be served with a small container of toothpicks on the platter.
Your guests arrive to appetizers and the juice bar all set up. Brew some fresh coffee, set out your buffet, and GET OUT OF THE KITCHEN!!
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