It’s spring, it’s really finally spring! As everything comes into blossom and bloom we all start getting out more, back into life beyond our front doors. It’s the perfect time to entertain.
Have you thought about brunch?
photos: The Pioneer Woman Collection Walmart – walmart.ca
Brunch has become a favourite way to gather groups together on the weekend. Whether it’s an intimate group of friends, a large group of family members or a simple celebration, brunch is fun because it’s casual and indulgent.
Weekends can get hectic, but there’s a sweet spot between 10am and 1pm that happens. Stayed up late? Breakfast at noon is perfect! Have kids that get up early? Lunch at 11am is no problem. It’s an ideal lazy start to the day, and it’s not a big, formal sit-down affair. People can come late – nobody has to wait for them. Brunch goes on long after the eating is over; so long, in fact, that the eating may resume again at some point.
Setting the table for brunch is much different than a dinner party. Again, brunch is informal. Think finger foods and family style service. You don’t want to turn brunch into a difficult meal to serve, and you don’t want courses. You want dishes that can stay on the table for an hour or two, maybe more. You want enough for seconds and thirds, stashing away an extra helping of some dishes makes it easy to pull them out and replace an empty plate with no effort. Save pancakes and waffles for a quiet day, you don’t want to slave at the stove while everyone else socializes.
Spring Brunching Food Suggestions:
- Bagels & baguettes
- Cream cheese
- Cheese platter
- Smoked salmon
- Jams & butter
- Peanutbutter & Nutella
- Muffins & scones
- Boiled eggs
- Charcuterie platter
- Green salad
- Pasta salad
- Fruit salad
- Yogurt & granola
- Carafes of coffee & hot water with tea bags
- Pitchers of fruit juices
- Champagne & Bloody Caesars
Don’t forget to have desserts on hand. They can be set out on the table with the brunch spread. A popular trend that’s returning is the covered cake stand. Let your glazed coffee cake, pastries and plate of cookies whet their appetites from under the glass.
Photos: Spring Collection Homesense – homesense.ca
In fact, there are many popular trends returning to the tabletop that are perfect for a fun, festive and informal brunch. Unlike formal dinner party china, or the stark white-on-white dinnerware that’s become so trendy, brunch is all about colour this spring. Coloured glass, florals, animals, fancy china patterns, geometrics, polkadots, plus gilded rims of plates and glasses set the foundation. Adding ornate pieces like goblets, teacups, colourful placemats or table runners, vases of flowers and decorative serving pieces dress it up to a fine finish. It’s not all about matchy-matchy, it’s about mix-and-match colours and patterns that offers a cheerful and playful ambiance.
The mix-and-match setting is a nice, eclectic style – especially beneficial if you want to entertain larger groups. Most people don’t have settings for more than six or eight, but with an informal brunch, it’s easy to gather 12 or 15 people around a table (or two – even add in the breakfast bar!). Mixing and matching plates, glasses and cutlerly is now a style, so use what you have, and borrow a few extra if needed. Fewer people have the space to keep “good china” and don’t have much beyond the ordinary pieces they use. Adding in a few new pieces can be inexpensive, and infuse some colour and fun into everyday meals. Or instead, buy melamine or acrylic pieces which can then be used for the backyard, terrace or balcony. Unbreakable and budget friendly, these are a perfect fit for the brunch crowd. Bon appétit!