Brewing, Cats, and Moving
I feel like such a danged adult: last weekend SpecSO and I hosted a brunch! I’ve certainly hosted parties in my vibrant past, as has SpecSO. In fact, he’s even hosted some while we’ve been together. We announced our decision to move in together at his Cinco De Mayo party (where I was dutifully attempting to not show the full extent of the food-poisoning that I felt during the announcement). But most of those parties involve snacks and random drinks. This shindig was CO-ORDINATED, y’all!
So a little background before we get into the meat of this. SpecSO went to college in the area, and it was his reunion that weekend. He had some friends coming into town who I wanted to see, but my work schedule prevented my attending most of the major events. Plus after work I’m so exhausted that I just go home and go to sleep. But I wanted to see some of his friends from the city and their new baby. SpecSO wasn’t sure just what he would be able to attend either, so the weekend before the reunion events I proposed that we have a brunch on Sunday before everyone hit the road and head home.
As soon as I had his ‘permission’ to start planning, I knew that we should have a mostly savory brunch. Most people would be showing up with some degree of hangover as the BIG REUNION PARTY was the night before (I missed it because I was exhausted after work – there was no way I could be sociable), therefor something salty and fatty and a little spicy was needed. Eggs and bacon are always an idea, but I needed something I could prep ahead of time so that we had as little work as possible that morning. The best way to have eggs and cheese and meat and stuff ready ahead of time? QUICHE!! I made 3 types.
Quiches are gloriously easy to make: get a frozen deep-dish pie crust (hush. I’ve never been able to make a good pie crust) fill it with 4-6 eggs, ~3/4 c milk/cream, ~1 c cheese, 1-1 1/2 c ‘filling’. Bake at 375 till it’s set (~45 minutes). Serve hot from the oven, cold from the fridge, or warm it up in a 350 degree oven for ~20 min.
I also wanted some sweet breads for people who didn’t want garlicy-spicy, so I had intended to make scones. But I was out of certain ingrediants, so I turned to my fall back recipe: salty-sweet buttermilk cake. I didn’t top it with the salt, because I wasn’t sure how that would be recieved. I used strawberries, some lemon zest, and some crystalized ginger.
Salads during brunch are utterly GLORIOUS, and allow for some fancyness, because it’s F’IN-BRUNCH. It’s SUPPOSED TO BE FANCY! (Did you notice we made EGG PIE, not just regular ol’ scrambled eggs? yeah). So escarole, toasted walnuts (toss them in a skillet over medium heat and keep them moving for a few moments), sour apple, and olive oil + balsamic vinegar (2 oil: 1 vinegar).
Sweet veg/fruit are a good light side in brunches, so this time we had watermelon, as well as apple, orange, lemon, and lime (which also served as garnish).
As 90% of our guests had been drinking heavily during that previous night, and this is a BRUNCH, so we need some booze. Bloody Mary’s, Pimm’s cups, and Mimosas were (literally) on the table.
And, of course, for the drivers and those who don’t / were tired of drinking, we had OJ, sparkling lemonade, awesome (shade-grown, fair-trade) coffee.
Ok, so now that everyone is hungry, we can get to the social bit.
In the last minute, SpecSO invited more alumni, so I was worried we wouldn’t have enough food. Thankfully, we brainstormed and decided that we could just toss a pack of english muffins under the broiler and serve them with the myriad spreads/preserves/jams/jellies that we had in the fridge.
The day of the brunch, the most ‘difficult’ thing was putting together the Bloody Mary bar, which was good as he had crawled into bed in the wee hours and I was still sore after a rough night at work. His friends showed up with their baby, and we got all super cute.
More and more people showed up, and we even ended up with INTERNET CELEBRITIES! You may have seen their proposal video passed around, and it’s one of the few things the Daily Mail has reported on that doesn’t make me go BLEH!
In the end, everyone had yummy food in their bellies, no hangover, and a great weekend with old and new friends. And THAT is what matters!
Lavender_Pepper’s Brunch Formula:
1) Egg dish
2) Salted pork
3) Not sweet bread
4) Sweet bread
5) savory veg or green salad
6) fruit / fruit salad
7) Savory and Sweet Hairs o’ Dogs
8) Non-booze cocktails
This past brunch:
1+2) Quiches a)asparagus/bacon/Gouda (paprika, salt+pepper), b)sundried tomatoes, spinach, feta (basil, s+p) c)mushroom, caramelized leek, cheddar (garlic, s+p)
3) English Muffins + spreads
4) Strawberry Cake
5) Escarole/Green Apple / Walnut Salad
6) Watermelon + fruit garnish
7) Bloody Mary / Pimms Cup / Mimosa
8) Oj / Sparkling Juices / coffee
Next brunch menu:
1) Deviled Eggs
3) Pimento Cheese + blt biscuits
4a) Biscuits with fruit spreads
4b) Lemon Icebox Pie
5) Green salad
6) Fruit salad
7) Boozy Drinks
8) Non-Boozy Drinks