Like Bobby Flay, brunch is one of my favorite meals. I love having friends over on weekends but after a long week, it’s important to me to keep it low key. All I had to do for this spread was cook up the Belgian waffles, which I whipped up the night before. Here are my tips for hosting a delicious but easy brunch:
1) Serve fruit.
Fresh, juicy berries are always a welcome site at brunch and don’t require any prep. There’s something so friendly and casual about a big bowl of fruit. Sometimes I stick to mixed berries, sometimes I serve pineapple slices, or I’ll throw together an exotic fruit salad. It’s fast, fresh, healthy, and delicious.
If you’re feeling really fancy, try serving sliced pears with honey and goat cheese. If you just want to drink coffee until your friends arrive, rinse off some berries and pile them high in a glass bowl.
2) Make something ahead of time.
Ask any of my friends and they’ll tell you I can’t tell a story while I’m cooking. I get so distracted by the food. Sure I’ll make a frittata or potatoes or omelets when people come over but when I’m feeling really lazy like today, I’ll make Beglian waffle batter the night before so that it’s bubbling and ready to go in the morning. All I have to do is heat the iron and pour the batter.
Even if I do feel like cooking, I often also serve coffee cake, muffins, or banana bread that I’ve baked the night before. Don’t try to do everything after your guests arrive. Brunch should be relaxing!
3) Repurpose flowers.
My flowers looked so sad. Much like me, they had a long week and were kind of wilted. The roses were completely bent in half. I cut the blooms off and floated them in water. Without the droopy stems, they looked quite nice!
A single purple rose was still decent enough for a vase so I paired it with the few leftover flowers that were still kickin’ from a huge bouquet. Oftentimes a whole bouquet looks spent and you want to throw it out but if you look closely, you’ll notice that a few stems are still fresh enough to repurpose.
I can never get it together to go to the store before brunch so I make do with what I already have in the house. You’ll often see herbs on my table with a few roses from the garden.
4) Serve yogurt in a fancy glass.
I serve Greek Gods yogurt at almost every single brunch that I host. One of my favorite German chefs says in a rather thick accent, “Und remember, zee eye eats too!” For that reason, I usually serve yogurt, granola, and fruit in martini or margarita glasses. Changing the serve ware instantly makes the morning feel special.
This particularly morning I layered Valerie’s Thyme granola with strawberries, Greek Gods honey yogurt, and blackberries with a lemon balm leaf for garnish. So chic and so simple: you’re literally sprinkling and spooning things in a dish, something that’s easy to manage before coffee.
5) When your friends ask if they can bring something, let them!
I always used to think I needed to do everything myself. Now I welcome help with open arms. I love bacon but hate cleaning the mess in the morning so it’s the first thing I ask guests to bring. Today my friend Katie brought over perfectly cooked bacon and gorgeous strawberries. You really can’t ever have too much bacon or fruit at brunch.
The Rose Table