Creating memories in the kitchen...One meal at a time.

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Sunday Brunch

We had some friends in town this weekend for UNLVino, and decided to have everyone over for brunch today before they all went home. The food was delicious and I wasn't stuck in the kitchen the whole time because I was able to make some of the things ahead and time and just throw it in the oven before the guests arrived. Here's what we had on the menu:

Caramel Pecan French Toast
Spring Onion & Smoked Salmon Frittata
Breakfast Potatoes
Breakfast Sausage
Fresh Fruit & Assorted Cheese Platter
Shrimp Cocktail
Lemon Tarts topped with Assorted Fruits
Paula Dean's Southern Pecan Brownies
Croissants with Strawberry Jam and Lemon Curd
Orange Juice
Cranberry Juice

The caramel pecan french toast and the brownies are from recipes that Sallie posted on here and the lemon tart is from a previous recipe that I posted. The french toast was so good. I made two pans of it and there was hardly any leftover. The brownies were so delicious as well, I will definitely be using that recipe for my "go to" brownie recipe in the future. Here are recipes for the other menu items:

Breakfast Potatoes
These potatoes were a huge hit. They've got a little bit of a kick to them, but you can add less chili flakes if you don't like spicy food. They're also good with ketchup.

2 large russet potatoes diced
2 -3 TBS olive oil
1 tsp dried dill or parsley
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp pepper
2 TBS grated Parmesan cheese
2 tsp salt
1 tsp chile flakes

Preheat oven to 425 deg.
Peel and wash potatoes. Dice potatoes in small cubes (about 1/2 inch thick).
Place in a medium bowl. Add olive oil and toss to coat all potatoes. Add the rest of the ingredients and toss to mix.
Place potatoes in a single layer in a 13x9 pan.
Bake for 40 -45 minutes or until nicely golden brown.

Spring Onion and Smoked Salmon Frittata
This frittata was so good. The chunks of cream cheese and the flavor of the smoked salmon pair so well together. I got this recipe from Williams Sonoma, but altered it a bit so I could bake it rather than have to tend to it on the stove.

1 1/2 Tbs. unsalted butter, melted
1 green onion, thinly sliced
6 eggs
3 Tbs. heavy cream
2 1/2 oz. smoked salmon, cut into 1-inch pieces
2 oz. cream cheese, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
2 Tbs. minced fresh chives
Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Prehead the oven to 350 degrees. Pour melted butter into a baking dish. In a bowl, whisk together the eggs and cream. Stir in the smoked salmon, cream cheese, 1 Tbs. of the chives and the green onion, and season with salt and pepper. Pour into baking dish. Bake for 35-45 minutes or until the eggs are set and a toothpick comes out clean. Garnish with the remaining 1 Tbs. chives. Serves 4 to 6.

Lemon Curd
The lemon curd is used to make lemon tarts, but it also it very yummy used as a spread on croissants. I also got this recipe from the Williams Sonoma website, but altered it slighty. I like to strain the curd once it's finished because I don't like the lemon zest in the curd, I think it is better when it has a completely smooth texture.

5 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
Grated zest of 2 lemons
6 Tbs. (3/4 stick) unsalted butter

In a heavy saucepan, combine the egg yolks and sugar and whisk vigorously for 1 minute. Add the lemon juice and zest and whisk for 1 minute more. Set the pan over low heat and cook gently, stirring constantly, until slightly thickened, 10 to 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat. Strain though a fine mesh sieve. Stir in the butter. Let cool, stirring occasionally. Cover tightly and refrigerate before using. Makes about 1 cup.
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