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a home + living guide for the post-college, pre-parenthood, quasi-adult generation

03.17.2005

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brunch time how to host a brunch 
by Yee-Fan Sun 
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Sunday mornings tend to be the brunch day of choice, but Saturdays can work a-okay as well. The bigger question is to figure out what time to start your brunch. While this will depend partially upon how big a morning person you are, and your friends as well, my advice is not to get too ambitious on the timing. Eleven is probably the earliest you can expect to be ready for entertaining; noon gives you plenty of time to get stuff ready before folks come over, and still enjoy your weekend sleep. Prepping as much as you can the night before will also ensure that you won't be a total stress-case come brunch-time -- chop ingredients, assemble any make-ahead dishes, clean the house, set the table, and you'll be all set to go when you get up the next morning.

le menu
My boy is always rolling his eyes at me when after a big dose of sugar, I'll go on and on about needing something savory, or two seconds after I've finished gorging on some salty snack, I'll be rummaging through the cabinets for something sweet. He claims it's just an excuse for me to eat more when I'm actually full, and yeah, there might be some truth in that, as admittedly I'm of the school of eating that thinks more about food for its taste than for its nutritive value. But at breakfast in particular, I hold firm to my belief that if I don't get the right mix of salt and sugar into the meal, I spend the rest of the day feeling weirdly off-kilter.

When planning your brunch menu, the key thing to keep in mind is that you'll want something salty, something sweet, and something healthy. If you're serving up French toast (a good choice as you can pre-soak the slices the night before), cook up some breakfast potatoes to balance out all that sugar, and set out a couple bowls of fresh ripe berries as well. Offer an assortment of muffins and a big ol' quiche or frittata, as well as a platter of cantaloupe and honeydew, or maybe yogurt with an assortment of toppings like granola, preserves, and fresh fruit.

If you're serving up a big crowd, there are a couple of ways to make the cooking simpler for yourself. Easiest is to go potluck, where you ask guests to each bring a favorite brunch dish to share. But if the randomness of potluck isn't your style, try the DIY route, where you spread out the prepped ingredients and toppings, and your guests assemble and cook the foods themselves. Try waffles or omelets, or if you don't want folks having to fuss with any cooking at all, create a bagel bar. Buy your bagels at your favorite bagel bakery; serve them up along with homemade flavored cream cheeses and lox, maybe some egg salad or chicken salad.

keep on ambling... 

 

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