10 Tempting Brunch Recipes for an Excellent Easter
Hosting Easter brunch will be a no-brainer this year if you follow this little handy how-to on brunch, and check out tips and tricks for hosting an Easter party. All of that, of course, doesn’t help you plan what to serve this year — a problem that can be solved right now. The best decorations for your brunch table are one — or all — of these 10 recipes, so start your ovens. You’ve got a party to host!
1. Bacon Wrapped Asparagus
Rachel Ray’s asparagus bundles wrapped in bacon will be a hit at your Easter brunch. They can be baked, or if you need oven space, cooked on the grill.
- 1 1/2 pounds asparagus spears, trimmed 4 to 5 inches long tips
- Extra-virgin olive oil, for drizzling
- A few grinds black pepper
- 4 slices center cut bacon or pancetta
- Chopped chives or scallions, optional garnish
Directions: Preheat oven, if using, to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly coat asparagus spears in extra-virgin olive oil. Season the asparagus with black pepper. Take a quick count of the spear tips. Divide the total number by four. Gather that number of spears and use a slice of bacon to wrap the bundle and secure the spears together. Repeat with remaining ingredients.
To grill, place bundles on hot grill and cover. Cook 10 to 12 minutes until bacon is crisp and asparagus bundles are tender. For oven preparation, place bundles on slotted broiler pan. Bake 12 minutes.
2. Breakfast Strata Lorraine
In this Williams-Sonoma strata, everything is prepared the night before and refrigerated until baking the next morning. In terms of texture, batard is similar to a baguette. It will be milder than a sourdough, but not as sweet as a dessert bread. Look for these properties if you wish to substitute, although sourdough will also work.
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1 yellow onion, sliced
- Kosher salt, to taste, plus 1 teaspoon
- Freshly ground pepper, to taste
- 1 pound spinach
- 1 1/2 loaf sweet batard, crusts removed, bread cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) squares and toasted until dry (about 9 cups)
- 8 ounces ham, diced
- 6 ounces Gruyère cheese, grated
- 10 eggs
- 2 1/2 cups half-and-half
Directions: In a large sauté pan over medium heat, warm 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the onion, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until caramelized, about 15 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.
In the same pan over medium heat, warm 1/2 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add half of the spinach, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring, until wilted, 2 to 3 minutes. Transfer to a colander. Repeat with the remaining 1/2 tablespoon olive oil and spinach. Using a rubber spatula, press out the excess moisture.
In a large bowl, toss together the bread cubes, the caramelized onion, spinach, ham, and cheese. Transfer to a 4-quart baking dish. In a bowl, beat together the eggs, half-and-half, the 1 teaspoon salt and pepper, to taste. Pour over the bread mixture. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 16 hours.
Preheat an oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the plastic wrap from the baking dish and cover with a lid or aluminum foil. Bake for 20 minutes. Uncover and continue baking until the top is browned and the strata is cooked through, 40 to 50 minutes more. Serves 12.
3. Spiced Carrot Muffins
The Easter Bunny isn’t the only one who will be munching on carrots when you make Kitchen Treaty‘s carrot muffins. Apple sauce has replaced some of the oil; whole-wheat flour and oats help make the muffins a little healthier too.
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole-wheat flour
- 1 cup rolled oats plus a couple extra tablespoons for topping
- 2 teaspoons baking powder
- 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cloves
- 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
- 1 cup milk
- 3/4 cup applesauce
- 3/4 cup packed brown sugar
- 1/3 cup vegetable oil
- 1 egg
- 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
- 2 cups carrot, grated
Directions: Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease or place cupcake wrappers in a standard-size, 12-cup muffin pan. In a large bowl, whisk together the flours, 1 cup oats, baking powder, baking soda, salt, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, and ginger.
In a medium bowl, whisk together the milk, applesauce, brown sugar, vegetable oil, egg, and vanilla extract. Pour the wet ingredients over the dry and whisk just until all ingredients are incorporated. Stir in the carrots. Divide the mixture between the muffin cups. Cups should be filled just about to the top.
Bake for 20 minutes or until muffin tops spring back when poked and a toothpick inserted into the center comes out clean. Allow to cool for 5 – 10 minutes before removing from the muffin tin. Serve plain with butter and honey, if desired. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 2 – 3 days, or freeze.
4. Simple Deviled Eggs
Devilishly good and quick to put together are AllRecipes.com‘s deviled eggs. Small but flavorful, a bite-sized deviled egg makes a great appetizer, or general addition to brunch.
- 6 hard-cooked eggs
- 2 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 1 teaspoon white sugar
- 1 teaspoon white vinegar
- 1 teaspoon prepared mustard
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped onion
- 1 tablespoon finely chopped celery
- 1 pinch paprika, or to taste
Directions: Slice eggs in half lengthwise and remove yolks; set whites aside. Mash yolks with a fork in a small bowl. Stir in mayonnaise, sugar, vinegar, mustard, salt, onion, and celery; mix well. Stuff or pipe egg yolk mixture into egg whites. Sprinkle with paprika. Refrigerate until serving.
5. Asparagus and Cheese Tart
Deep green asparagus and pale yellow cheese encased in a puff pastry will be a pretty addition to your brunch table this year, thanks to Food Network.
- 1 pound asparagus, trimmed
- 1 sheet frozen puff pastry, thawed
- All-purpose flour, for dusting
- 1 cup grated fontina cheese
- 1 cup grated comte or gruyere cheese
- 1 tablespoon minced shallot
- 2 large egg yolks
- 3 tablespoons whole milk
- 1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1/2 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Directions: Fill a large bowl with ice water. Bring about 1 inch of water to a boil in a large skillet. Add the asparagus; cook until bright green and crisp-tender, 2 to 5 minutes, depending on the thickness of the asparagus. Drain and transfer to the ice water to stop the cooking; drain and pat dry. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Roll out the puff pastry into a 10 x 16-inch rectangle on a floured surface. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet and prick all over with a fork. Bake until light golden brown, about 12 minutes. Let cool slightly on the baking sheet.
Meanwhile, mix the fontina, comte, shallot, egg yolks, milk, nutmeg, and a pinch each of salt and pepper in a bowl until combined. Spread the cheese mixture evenly over the puff pastry, leaving a 1-inch border on all sides. Toss the asparagus with the olive oil, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and pepper to taste. Arrange the asparagus on the tart and bake until the cheese mixture is slightly puffy, 15 to 20 minutes. Sprinkle with the lemon zest. Serve warm or at room temperature.
6. Lemon Cake
To be specific, Saveur calls this The Best Damn Meyer Lemon Cake. For the best results, using a light metal loaf pan is recommended. The cake browns when a dark pan is used, and a glass pan will not conduct heat as well.
- 1 tablespoon butter, plus 8 tablespoons melted
- 2 tablespoons fine dry bread crumbs
- 1/2 cup whole blanched almonds
- 1 1/2 cups flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 3/4 teaspoon fine salt
- 1 1/3 cups plus 2 tbsp. sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1/2 cup milk, at room temperature
- 2 tablespoons lemon extract
- Zest and juice of 2 Meyer lemons
Directions: Heat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a loaf pan measuring 8 1/2 x 4 1/2 x 2 3/4 with 1 tablespoon of the butter and dust it with the bread crumbs. Invert and tap out excess crumbs; set aside. In a food processor, grind the almonds until very fine, about 1 minute; set aside. In a bowl, sift together flour, baking powder, and salt and set aside.
Put the remaining butter into a large bowl and add 1 cup of the sugar. Mix with an electric mixer on low speed until combined, about 1 minute. Add the eggs, one at a time, beating just long enough to incorporate, about 30 seconds. Add the flour mixture and milk mixture in 3 batches, beginning and ending with the flour. Beat until mixed after each addition, scraping down the sides of the bowl with a rubber spatula, about 3 minutes total. Mix in the lemon extract. With the spatula, fold in the lemon zest and ground almonds. (The mixture will be thin.) Turn batter into prepared pan and bake until a toothpick inserted in the center of the cake comes out clean and dry, about 65 minutes.
Transfer the pan to a cooling rack. To prepare the glaze, combine remaining sugar and lemon juice in a small saucepan over medium heat and cook, stirring until sugar is dissolved, about 2 minutes. (Do not boil.) Brush the glaze over the hot cake. (The excess liquid may pool along the sides of the pan; it will absorb completely as it sits.) Once the cake has absorbed all the liquid, turn it out of the pan and allow it to cool upright on a rack. Once it’s cool, wrap the cake with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature for 24 hours before serving.
7. Glazed Ham
You aren’t hosting Easter dinner, but that doesn’t mean you can’t have a ham for your main dish. Chow‘s ham is glazed with a sweet brown sugar and honey mixture that gives the exterior a nice crunch while the inside is juicy.
- 1 (10-pound) smoked, bone-in ham
- 1 cup honey
- 1/4 cup whole-grain mustard
- 1/4 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter (1/2 stick)
Directions: Heat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and arrange a rack in the lower third. Remove any plastic packaging or netting from the ham. Trim away any excess fat, leaving about a 1/4-inch layer all over. Set the ham aside to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
Line a baking sheet with several sheets of aluminum foil (it will make cleanup a lot easier.) Place the ham, cut side down, on the baking sheet and cover it with a piece of parchment paper. Tightly cover the ham and parchment paper with aluminum foil and bake for 45 minutes.
Meanwhile, combine the remaining ingredients in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, stirring occasionally, until the butter melts and the brown sugar has completely dissolved, about 3 minutes. Set aside and let cool to lukewarm (the glaze should be the consistency of room-temperature honey.)
When the ham is ready, remove it from the oven and increase the oven temperature to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Discard the foil and parchment paper and, using a sharp knife, score a 1-inch-wide diamond pattern (don’t cut more than 1/4-inch deep) over the entire ham. Brush the ham with a quarter of the glaze (about a generous 1/3 cup), return it to the oven, and bake uncovered for 15 minutes. Remove from the oven, brush with another quarter of the glaze, and repeat every 15 minutes until all of the glaze has been used and a dark golden-brown crust has formed, about 55 to 60 minutes total. Let the ham rest 20 to 30 minutes before slicing.
8. Breakfast Potatoes
An alternative to egg-based side dishes are breakfast potatoes. This version from Add a Pinch will serve 8, and everything is cooked in a skillet.
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1/2 cup butter
- 5 pound Yukon Gold potatoes, chopped
- 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 medium onions, chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
- 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper
Directions: Add olive oil and butter to a large skillet over medium heat. Allow butter to melt and add potatoes, garlic, onions, and bell peppers to the skillet, stirring frequently to prevent sticking. Cook until fork tender, about 15 minutes. Stir in salt and cayenne pepper. Serve warm.
9. Apple Cinnamon Coffee Cake
Upgrade your coffee cake with a dash of “Bam!” with Emeril Lagasse’s recipe. Lagasse adds apples to the cake, and a brown sugar topping worthy of his catchphrase.
- 1 stick plus 2 teaspoons unsalted butter
- 1 1/2 cups packed light brown sugar
- 2 large eggs
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon baking soda
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup sour cream
- 1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 cups peeled, cored, and chopped apples
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 cup all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
- 1/2 cup packed light brown sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 tablespoons water
Directions: Preheat the oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease a 13 x 9-inch glass baking dish with 2 teaspoons of the butter.
In a large bowl, cream together the remaining stick of butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add the eggs 1 at a time, beating after the addition of each. In a separate bowl or on a piece of parchment, sift together the flour, baking soda, cinnamon, and salt. Add to the wet ingredients, alternating with the sour cream and vanilla. Fold in the apples. Pour into the prepared baking dish, spreading out to the edges.
To make the topping, in a bowl, combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon, and butter and mix until it resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle the topping over the cake and bake until golden brown and set, 35 to 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool on a wire rack for at least 10 minutes.
To make the glaze, in a bowl, combine the sugar, vanilla, and water and mix until smooth. Drizzle the cake with the glaze and let harden slightly. Serve warm.
10. Cream Cheese Danish
Instead of making pastry dough, the flaky texture of the danish from AllRecipes.com is achieved by using a refrigerated crescent roll dough. It will save you a lot of time and hassle, but still create a scrumptious pastry.
- 2 (10 ounce) cans refrigerated crescent roll dough
- 2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese, diced
- 3/4 cup white sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 2 teaspoons sour cream
- 1 cup confectioners’ sugar
- 1 tablespoon milk
- 1 tablespoon butter, softened
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Lightly grease a 9 x 13-inch baking pan. Line bottom of baking pan with 1 can of crescent rolls. Pinch all seams together to seal. In a large bowl, mix together cream cheese, white sugar, lemon juice, vanilla extract, and sour cream. Spread filling on top of rolls. Place second can of rolls on top of filling. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 30 minutes. In a small bowl, stir together confectioners’ sugar, milk, and butter. After Danish has cooled, drizzle with icing.