Why has brunch become so popular?
Brunch can fit into almost everyone’s plans. It’s not too early so that you have to get out of bed before you’re ready and not too late so that you can still enjoy whatever activities you have planned for the afternoon. Normally, brunch is set at around 10:00 am but you can play around with this so that it suits everyone.
Brunch is also far more relaxed than organising a fancy lunch or dinner for your family or friends. Buffets are popular with the brunch crowd and you have the option of serving a variety of different foods, with something to please everyone on your guest list.
How to plan the perfect brunch party
The important thing to remember is to keep it fairly low key. Don’t invite more people than can comfortably fit around your table. For most people, this amounts to around six guests. Six is a great number for lively conversations and long-awaited catch-ups.
Plan your menu around the people you’re inviting. If there are some with known food allergies, make sure that you have plenty of variety to cater to everyone. You also want to ensure that you invite your guests at least a couple of weeks before so that everyone is able to attend.
To keep you on track, make your stress-free brunch a buffet so that everyone can help themselves. It’s also a good idea to set the table the night before so that you’re not too rushed in the morning.
Keep the décor relaxed and casual. A bunch of flowers from your garden in the middle of the table is totally fine. Or, you could add a few more touches if the brunch is celebrating something special such as an anniversary or a birthday.
You could even ask your guests to bring along their favourite brunch dish. This means you won’t have to do all the cooking yourself and you’ll know that everyone will be catered for and have something that pleases their palate.
Planning the perfect brunch menu
When planning your brunch menu, remember to keep it simple and casual. Try to serve food that you can prepare beforehand and warm up in the morning. A colourful fruit platter is ideal for the centre of the buffet table.
As eggs feature heavily in brunch menus, consider things like frittatas and quiches that you can prepare the day before. You can complement these with an assortment of breads and freshly baked muffins. These can also be prepared the day before, ready for baking in the morning. You could even make individual quiches baked in a muffin tin. Another option is to prepare a big pot of scrambled eggs (not cooked) before guests arrive then sit them on the stove to cook slowly.
Don’t forget a few fresh ingredients like cherry tomatoes, mesclun lettuce, and avocado. Alternatively, rather than preparing fresh avocado that may go brown, make a large bowl of guacamole the night before that people can have as a spread on their stone-baked bread, croissants, or English muffins. Cover the guacamole with a thin layer of water or lemon juice to keep it looking appetising.
Don’t forget the drinks either. Jugs of fresh fruit juice are a must. Make sure you have a variety of juices ‒ including vegetable juice such as tomato ‒ to keep everyone happy. Of course, brunch is not complete without tea and coffee as well.
For fresh coffee, a drip filter machine is ideal, or even a pod machine with a variety of different flavours so everyone can help themselves. It’s also a great idea to ditch the teabags and serve lovely fresh, leaf tea instead. Don’t forget to have some almond, soy or oat milk on hand for those who don’t drink dairy.
Whether or not you serve alcohol is up to you and your guests’ preferences. Mimosas are always popular during brunch as are bloody Marys.
Above all else, keep your brunch party simple and relaxed, and have a great time.
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