Archive for June, 2011

Brunch for friends: 3 courses – bircher muesli, english breakfast and french toast

Wednesday, June 15th, 2011

I’ve probably mentioned it before, but Sunday brunch is my most favourite meal of the whole week.  I love enjoying my lazy day as Saturday is usually when I have stuff on – you know, birthdays, errands, dinners – each with its own required prep – and Sunday is my slow day to catch up with friends.  I also love being outside in the sun – as opposed to the artificial neon cylinders of an enclosed drying office.  And of course, Sunday brunch has mandatory bacon.  Yum!   This week I decided to bring my brunch home, and instead invite 6 friends over to eat, hang out and get to test out some recipes.   Why not a 3 course brunch?  Obviously, since brunch is on the early side of midday, one course must be prepared beforehand – I’m cooking, not sacrificing sleep after all ;)  And what better dish than bircher muesli, which is supposed to be made the day before!  I have a confession – I decided to make it even though I’d never even eaten it! Who wants a healthy option for breakfast when you can have a fat option? ;)  Well, it sounds relatively easy…. and can I just say- I totally fell in love with it since!!  It’s sooooo easy.

Take 3 cups of rolled oats, and soak overnight in 1.5 cups of apple juice.  Then in the morning, stir through a cup of yoghurt – any flavour – I’ve used vanilla or strawberry.   Let it continue to sit in the fridge and let the oats get softer, and then when you’re about to serve, stir in some chopped roasted almonds, some grated apple and some honey.  I garnished it with more almonds on top of a dollop of more yoghurt; and some apple which I grated with my finger slicing device otherwise known as a mandoline.  *shudder*.  Well, off to a healthy start, it must mean that you’ve earned the right to a fry up.  cooking bacon and eggs and sausages for 7 people could mean a morning of slaving away at the stove, rather than entertaining – a definite no no.  And that’s where my tray bake english breakfast comes in.

You can have it all prepared and put in the oven and all you’ll need to do is cook the eggs, and delegate someone to make your toast!  Turn on your oven to 200 degrees, put in as many sausages as you need, cook for 10minutes.  Then, put your mushrooms in, and drizzle with some oil, and layer your bacon on top.  Bake for a further 10 minutes until your bacon is cooked to your liking and the mushrooms are soft. How easy is that??  I served it with sunny side up free range eggs and woodfired italian toast.  With my 3 course breakfast, one sausage and one piece of toast was enough!  My tomatoes were gorgeous – sweet and rose red, so i opted to serve them au natural and simply seasoned.  They tasted amazing!  And if your guests still aren’t stuffed, serve them what was regarded as the favourite of the day – french toast with poached pears and caramel sauce.  Again, really handy because you can make both the poached pears and the caramel sauce before people come!

I poached some buerre bosc pears in a syrup of half water, half sugar with a cinnamon quill chucked in.  I boiled them til i could poke a knife in.  Then chill in the fridge.  For the caramel sauce, mix butter, cream and brown sugar in a saucepan on low heat until combined.  For the french toast, beat eggs with some sugar and milk, and soak the bread in until it’s all soggy.  Then panfry in a little butter.  Plate up and enjoy warm and you’ll forever have your friends banging on your door for more :)