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Easter brunch made easy

By Hilary Meyer, April 7, 2009 - 4:36am

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I love Easter brunch, but I always thought it was stressful to pull together. I got up at the crack of dawn to get everything on the table by midmorning. Sure, it tasted great but I was always too tired to really enjoy it. This year I’m going with a new strategy. All the recipes for my holiday table can be made ahead of time (with the exception of the drink, but that takes only 10 minutes from start to finish). That way I can relax a little and free up some time to enjoy the day.

Here is my easy Easter Brunch Menu:

Ham & Cheese Breakfast Casserole: This healthy update of a traditionally rich ham-and-cheese breakfast strata is made lighter primarily by losing a few egg yolks and using nonfat milk. Gruyère cheese has a delicious, nutty aroma and flavor, which means that with the relatively small amount in this recipe you still get a big impact.

Asparagus Topped with Creamy Tarragon Sauce: This sauce is like a luscious, creamy bearnaise sauce without all the calories and fat.

Cardamom-Crumb Coffee Cake: Cardamom’s distinctive floral and spice aroma makes for a delicious and unique coffee cake. A member of the ginger family, it is widely used in the baking of Scandinavia and the dishes of Eastern India. If you prefer to go more traditional, cinnamon also works wonderfully in this cake.

Caramel Cream Cheese Custard (Flan de Queso): Every panaderia (bakery) in Puerto Rico has many flavors of flan, from vanilla to guava. Reduced-fat cream cheese gives this version a rich, comforting texture.

Campari, Grapefruit & Pomegranate Cocktail: Balance herbaceous Campari with the sweet-tart flavors of pomegranate and grapefruit. This dusty pink drink looks festive in a stemmed wineglass with a twist of orange zest. For a slightly sweeter drink, use orange juice instead of grapefruit. To make a nonalcoholic version, omit the Campari and add an extra 1/3 cup of each juice.

What do you have on your Easter brunch table? Tell us what you think below.

TAGS: Hilary Meyer, Food Blog

Hilary Meyer
Hilary Meyer develops and tests healthy recipes in the EatingWell Test Kitchen. She is a graduate of New England Culinary Institute.

Hilary asks: What do you have on your Easter brunch table?

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