Life with a newborn in the house has given us a newfound appreciation for weekend brunch. We’re up early, and those morning hours are when our little gal is at her happiest. So instead of meeting friends out for drinks like we used to on Saturday nights, we’ve been inviting friends over for a late morning brunch to catch up instead. With Easter just a few weeks away, brunch ideas have been even more top of mind – my family has a tradition of celebrating the holiday with a big brunch feast!
Time is a precious commodity these days, though, so I’ve been pulling out all of the tricks in my toolbox to create a Pinterest-worthy brunch as efficiently as possible. During some of my travels, I’ve had the opportunity to stay at a few different hotels from the Lark Hotels brand—and one thing I love about them is that they present a delicious small-plates style breakfast spread in their lobby every morning. They’ve inspired my new brunch technique of setting up a tapas-inspired menu that looks like I spent hours cooking, but in reality, it only takes about 30 minutes to set up. Here’s how I do it:
The day before: Write my shopping list and gather all ingredients and prepared foods the night before so I’m ready to set up before guests arrive!
The night before: Get out dishes, cutlery and serving dishes for the next day and fill a few bud vases with fresh flowers. Make sure your ice cube trays are filled and any drinks you’re serving are chilling in the fridge (mimosas, please!).
10:00 a.m.: Preheat the oven and pop in a store-bought quiche from the grocery store. Slice up a baguette and drizzle the pieces with olive oil and toast in the oven.
10:05 a.m.: Use a vegetable peel to cut ribbons of three large carrots, thinly slice radishes and radicchio, and toss with torn spinach. Mix up a tablespoon of grainy mustard with a drizzle of olive oil and another tablespoon of apple cider vinegar. Toss with the vegetables and season with salt and pepper before dividing into four Chinet® Cut Crystal® stemless wine glasses.
10:15 a.m.: Divide and layer Greek yogurt, granola, nuts and fresh berries in Chinet Cut Crystal cups to make individually portioned parfaits.
10:20 a.m.: Breakout a few platters, cake stands, or Chinet® Classic White™ square dinner plates (for easy cleanup!) and arrange a selection of muffins, donuts or scones.
10:25 a.m.: Spread a fresh avocado across the freshly toasted baguette slices and top with salt, pepper and crushed red pepper flakes.
10:30 a.m.: Pull the quiche out of the oven and slice into individual pieces to display on a platter. Garnish with fresh herbs before placing on the table.
By 10:31 a.m., you can toss any containers in the recycling bin so your guests won’t even know you bought the quiche and those muffins (keep your apron, it helps convince them you were cooking all morning!). Then all that’s left to do is pop a bottle of Champagne and pour yourself a mimosa to enjoy as your guests arrive!
Do you have any easy hosting hacks for brunch? We would love to hear them! Share your hosting tips and tricks on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram using #MyChinetParty.
Kate Bowler is the author of popular Boston-based lifestyle blog, Domestikated Life, where she covers topics such as festive entertaining tips, easy and fun recipes, and seasonal DIY projects.