Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Brunch

Happy Easter! Zack and I collaborated on a brunch menu today. I wanted to try a strata (bread vessel filled with baked eggs), he wanted banana muffins.

First, I tried to find a great banana bread recipe. I did lots of internet research and picked one by Molly Wizenberg (Orangette), which called for yogurt. Then at the last minute I thought that banana bread would be something I could find in my grandma's church cookbook. The second recipe on the page was actually submitted by my Grandma Verna! Therefore, I had to make that recipe. And, I had the cutest silicone muffin tin in the shapes of spring flowers. Here is her recipe verbatim. I added chocolate chips and my muffins turned out really cute.

Grandma Verna's Banana Bread
1/2 cup shortening (I used butter, of course)
2 eggs
1 c. sugar
1 tsp baking soda, dissolved in 1 T. sour cream or milk
4 good-sized bananas, mashed
2 c. flour
1/8 tsp salt
chopped nuts (opt)

Mix together and bake in a moderate oven for 1 hour.
Seriously, now I know why I'm so bad at writing recipes, it runs in the blood. "Good-sized" bananas? "Moderate" oven? How is someone supposed to know what that means?

For the strata, I bought a nice loaf of ciabatta. Hollowed it out and filled it with sauteed mushrooms and asparagus, and topped with grated parmesan cheese. You are supposed to pre-bake the hollowed out bread shell to avoid too much egg-seepage. I forgot that part. But it still turned out pretty yummy.

Breakfast Strata
1 loaf ciabatta
6 eggs
1/2 cup water or milk
Sauteed mushrooms
Herbs - such as parsley and basil
Salt and pepper
Parmesan cheese

Cut the top off the ciabatta and hollow it out. Brush with olive oil and bake for a few minutes. Fill with mixture of eggs, veggies, herbs, and spices. Top with grated parm. Bake on foil covered sheet for about 30 minutes at 350 degrees.

We enjoyed our banana muffins and strata with yogurt and strawberries, coffee, and mimosas. It was a great start to a beautiful Minnesota Easter Sunday.

PS - went for a long walk around Lake Nokomis this afternoon and totally saw grown adults hunting easter eggs in their yard. It was awesome.


  1. you are just too fabulous! nothing more nothing less!!!


    p.s. have I mentioned that my boyfriend will now not eat a meal until we have photoed it in hopes it may end up on your blog!?? even amongst my strong complaints the food will get cold!? I now live w/ a man who understands food can be delicious and beautiful and fear the rest of my meals on this earth will be forever recorded and I will be able to say - yes kids - this is what your father and i ate on june 2nd 2009. the eggs WERE good :)

    p.s.s. thank god for spell check!

  2. p.s.s you should agg this website to your blog list as every good cook needs a french counterpart!! ;)

  3. ok ok ok ONE MORE COMMENT! GIRL PLEASE! make this available to the world! its just too amazing to keep to yourself!!