Saturday, November 21, 2009

Host a Christmas Brunch

You have spent a good portion of Christmas Eve getting food ready for Christmas dinner the next day. Treat all of the diligent cooks (and the rest of the family) to a brunch on Christmas midmorning. Everyone can get the nourishment they need to finish preparation for dinner that night.

The good thing about a brunch is that it combines the best of breakfast and lunch. If you have those who love breakfast foods anytime of the day, it works. For others who want to eat light, they have the lunch half of the fare.

If you are going to host the Christmas brunch, include the cooking items you need in your master list for Christmas dinner shopping. You don’t want to run out of eggs or milk or bread. While one half of the group is working on Christmas dinner, the other half can be preparing for brunch.

Here are some tips to get you started:

  • Decide on the menu ahead of time – keep it simple but with enough variety for your family’s tastes.
  • Decide how you will present the brunch. Buffet style is good for early risers and those who want to sleep for an extra 20 minutes.
  • Don’t forget the drinks: plenty of fruit juices, milk and teas
  • Perform the prep work the night before when the other half of the cooks are preparing for Christmas dinner – casseroles can be put together and refrigerated.
  • Don’t forget the setup for a buffet style brunch. You don’t want to run out of pans for the food.

The secret to a holiday brunch is the preparation and a bit of cheating. It is okay because the food will still be good. For example, if you decide to serve blueberry muffins, buy them from the store. Take them out to come to room temperature in the morning. Use frozen, cooked sausage for the casseroles so you don’t have to perform that step on Christmas morning.

A perfect way to save cleanup is to have a buffet brunch and a buffet holiday dinner. The tables will only have to be set up once. All you will do is wipe up the table clothes and switch out the food pans when it is time for dinner. The brunch food stays warm from the first family member to the last.

Want some brunch ideas? Here they are:

  • Sausage, egg and cheese breakfast casserole
  • Assorted muffins
  • Fruit Juices
  • Fruit salad
  • Ham and turkey slices with white and wheat bread

The first rule is to keep it simple. Dinner is coming in a few short hours and you want everyone to have room for all that you’ve prepared.

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