Holiday Brunch


Seasons Greetings to All

Here's to the blessing of the year.
Here's to the friends we hold so dear,
To peace on earth, both far and near.
A toast to the old year as we welcome in the new with a festive Poinsettia Cocktail, and a delicious Cheesy Bacon Croissant Breakfast Casserole served with a Clementine Arugula Salad as a side. And who can resist another holiday cookie, a traditional Russian Teacake aka Snowball to top off the meal.
Seasonal Plate-Food Column
Poinsettia Cocktail 
The recipe serves four.
2-1/2 cups Cran-Pomegranate juice (cold)
1 cup vodka
¼ cup Cointreau
3 tablespoons fresh lime juice
Frozen cranberries

Mix all ingredients in a cocktail shaker except cranberries. Add crushed ice and reshake.
Divide among four glasses and top each serving with a few frozen cranberries.

Overnight Cheesy Bacon Croissant Breakfast Casserole
Cooking Tips: For best results toast the croissants as it gives more stability to the recipe and avoids it being soggy. Use freshly grated cheese as opposed to shredded cheese in a bag as will melt better and the casserole will be creamier and cheesier. Prep ahead makes assembling go faster by dicing onions and peppers and frying bacon. Use a 8 x 8 pan that has been greased on sides and bottom to avoid casserole sticking.

  • 5 large croissants, halved
  • ¾ lb. bacon, fried, drained on a paper towel and diced
  • 1-1/2 cups white cheddar cheese
  • ¾ cup diced sweet onions
  • 1 cup diced mini sweet peppers red and yellow
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1-1/2 cups half and half
  • 2 tablespoons honey
  • 1 teaspoon Dijon mustard
  • 1 teaspoon each parsley flakes and Italian seasoning
  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Spread halved croissants on a baking sheet and toast 11 minutes. Check often so they don't burn. Let them cool.
  • In a fry pan cook bacon, drain grease and crumble bacon. In same fry pan saute onions and peppers.
  • In a blender mix eggs, half and half, honey, mustard and spices.
  • Tear croissants into large bite sized pieces and place evenly into prepared dish.
  • Sprinkle evenly cooked bacon bits, onions and peppers over the torn croissants.
  • Sprinkle shredded cheese over bacon onion mixture.
  • Pour egg mixture evenly over the casserole.
  • Cover the baking dish and refrigerate for at least 4 hours or up to 12 hours. Any longer and the croissants can start to break down and disintegrate.
  • Remove cover from casserole and bring to room temperature. Bake 35 minutes until casserole is golden and puffy and firm to the touch. Let stand 10 minutes before serving.
Clementine Arugula Salad
Cook's Notes: Ingredients are listed and amounts will vary depending on how many servings needed.

Salad Ingredients:
  • Arugula
  • Clementines peeled (can be halved)
  • Pomegranate arils
  • Crumbled goat cheese or white cheddar cubes
  • Toasted walnuts or pecans
  • Diced red onions
  • Dried Cranberries
Maple Balsamic Dressing Ingredients:
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1-1/2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
  • 1 medium garlic clove, minced
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • ¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
  • Mix in blender. Taste taste to balance ingredients.
Mexican Wedding Cakes aka Snowball Cookies

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