Holiday Brunch: Creating an Easy, Delicious Meal
The holidays are traditionally a time for families. Life can get hectic with holiday shopping, entertaining and other commitments, but it’s the warmth, joy and togetherness that make it all worthwhile. If you are planning a holiday get together this year, planning your menus in advance can take much of the stress off you. We do a lot of entertaining, and I find that one of the most stressful things for me is simply planning what to make. I like to try new recipes and always want to impress our guests, so it might take weeks to find just the right items to put on our annual holiday menu.
Hosting a holiday brunch can be a fun idea. Waking up on Christmas morning, letting the kids discover the contents of their Santa stockings, and enjoying the serenity and sheer magic of the Christmas morning services make for a wonderful start to Christmas day. Plan to top off the festivities with a brunch gathering at your house where almost every item can be made in advance! What could be better?
Here are a couple of recipes that you and your guests are sure to love. They’re easy and best of all, they can be made in advance so you can sit back and enjoy the holiday gathering with your family and friends without all the fuss.
Have a blessed holiday!
Overnight Southwestern Egg Bake
- 12 eggs
- ½ cup half and half or milk
- 1 (11 oz.) can Green Giant Mexicorn
- 10 (6 oz.) soft corn tortillas, cut into quarters
- 4 oz. (1 cup) shredded Cheddar Cheese, Monterey Jack Cheese or a combination of both
- 2 cups salsa
- 1 cup dairy sour cream
- 1 cup guacamole
Generously grease 13x9 baking dish. In large bowl, combine eggs and half and half. Beat slightly. Stir in corn. Place tortillas in bottom of greased dish. Pour egg mixture over tortillas. Sprinke with cheese. Cover and refrigerate overnight.
Heat oven to 375 F. Cover casserole with foil. Bake 25-30 minutes or until eggs are just set. Let stand covered for 5 minutes. Uncover and spoon salsa over eggs. Serve with sour cream and guacamole. Makes 12 -15 servings.
NOTE: I typically set out the sour cream, guacamole, extra shredded cheese, salsa, diced onions so that guests can top off their serving anyway they like it.
Brandied Fruit Melange
- ½ cup Brandy or ½ cup apple juice plus 1 tsp. brandy extract
- ¼ cup firmly packed brown sugar
- 1 (3-4 in.) cinnamon stick
- 2 cups fresh or frozen peach slices
- 2 medium unpeeled Granny Smith apples, cored, sliced and cut in half
- 2 medium seedless oranges, peeled and sectioned
- 1 cup halved strawberries
- 1 medium kiwifruit, peeled and sliced
In small saucepan, combine brandy, brown sugar and cinnamon stick. Mix well. Bring to a boil over medium-high heat, stirring constantly. In large bowl, combine peaches, apples and oranges. Mix well. Pour hot brandy mixture over fruit. Cover and store in refrigerator for 8-10 hours or overnight. Stir occasionally. Just before serving, remove cinnamon stick. Add strawberries and kiwifruit and toss lightly. Spoon into serving bowl. Makes 16 (1/2 cup) servings.
I serve this dishes with a side of sausage. I partially cook the sausage the night before and finish it off the morning of the brunch by placing the partially cooked sausages in a shallow baking dish with a little bit of water to retain moisture. The sausage can bake while the egg dish is baking. Just keep an eye on it so it doesn’t get overdone.
I also serve English muffins, but you can opt for toast, bagels or other bread product of your choice. Enjoy your brunch!
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