So, first things first. Failure....
So my brilliant idea was to make a play on potato pancakes. I cleaned and washed some small yukon golds, cubed them, and threw them into the food processor. A hash brown of sorts. Seasoned well with parsley, salt, pepper, a small amount of oregano, and of course, a extra sharp cheddar cheese. Concept was simple enough. A hash brown/potato pancake type thing in small happy little lump. Pan fry them first and then bake them off. Too easy to mess up, right????
Here was the lesson of the week. I tried to get this done a day in advance. I know oxygen has a negative effect on potatoes. What I DIDN'T know was HOW negative. I was convinced that covered and sealed in the fridge the potatoes would be fine. What happened instead was a brown, lumpy, ugly, fowl smelling potato concoction I would not have served to the homeless. Thank goodness, as I have a tendency to do, I overcooked.
So we've covered the hash browns are done. Next was on to the Quiche. Quiche is probably one of, if not my favorite, breakfast dishes. Crust, egg, cheese, some sort of protein. It's everything breakfast is supposed to be in a simple, bite size form. And, when cooking for a large group, to easy not to make. I went with what I call a "cheat quiche". "Cheat" referring to the use of a pre-made pie crust.
Being that we had around 10 people coming for this Easter brunch, I decided less was more. I went with one pound of bacon, 3 and 1/2 cups of cheddar cheese, and one large white onion. I sautéed the onions in the bacon fat (after cubing and cooking the bacon obviously), let it cool for around an hour as to not cook the eggs upon contact. Then used 8 eggs. I use about 1 part milk to every 2 parts eggs before beating. It softens the eggs while cooking and keeps the eggs nice and fluffy. Usually this would be cooked at 350 for about 45 minutes, but given that the oven was filled with others, this was aout 1 1/2 hours at about 275
So when all was said in done, this might have been the true hit of the brunch. I would have preferred to have more bacon and perhaps even more cheese. Let me rephrase, I would ALWAYS like more cheese, and this particular dish was no different. The crust was good (cheat or no cheat) and I got to watch my little brother eat more than I think I have ever seen him eat. It was not the best I have ever made, however I got more people to indulge in quiche than normal, so I will take it as a win.
Next was the Ham. As is the usual for me, This was more of a purchase than it was an event. It came, spiraled, with glaze. I put it in the oven (very carefully I might add). I cooked it. My quasi father-in-law cut it. And that was the ham...
Next was on for the french toast. French toast is one of my better breakfast dishes. This particular time was a huge pain. The goal was Brioche. I wanted to get some brioche bread and use my regular blend of vanilla and almond extract. The issue. No Brioche anywhere. So instead, I decide I could use a cuban bread. Figuring I could easily cut the bottom crust off the cuban bread would have a similar sweetness and density so that it could hold up to both the vanilla and almond. But alas, no cuban bread either. For those of you who lives in a large metropolis and has access to great markets, consider yourself lucky. Instead, I found a nice sourdough. Although it is NOTHING like the original plan was, I thought the sweet and sour combo could actually compliment each other. And, as I sometimes do, it was a good idea. The sourdough was sour (as advertised), however the almond and vanilla extract additions really did serve a nice contrast, especially when you included some fresh from Vermont maple syrup.
So the best part of all of it, we had NO left overs. Almost the whole immediate family was there, the food was good, the conversation was spirited, and everyone left full and happy. My parents were in Hawaii which was the only missing piece, but otherwise is was a perfect Sunday afternoon.
Now, off to look for something else to eat....