Mother's Day is around the corner and moms everywhere deserve an extra special celebration! One of the best and easiest ways to show your gratitude is to create a homemade brunch for her with your family. Thoughtful and delicious! These tips will show you how you don’t have to break the bank -- or spend lots of time in the kitchen -- to make the day memorable for your mothers.
The cost for this brunch, including decorations, was under $75. This menu has a great mix of sweet and savory, breakfast and lunch, so there is something for everyone. Each dish is easy to serve in small portions so guests can try a little of everything.
The recipes can be accomplished with basic cooking skills, and they don’t require many ingredients. Fear not -- your families will be so impressed they will never suspect how easy it was to prepare this party!
Prosciutto Egg Cups - Recipes don’t get any easier than this. Just place slices of prosciutto in a muffin tin so that they cover the surface of the cups, and crack eggs into the cups. Bake for 20 minutes at 350 degrees and serve.
Crusted Chicken Breasts - In order to have a true brunch, you need to
include both breakfast and lunch items on your menu. This panko crusted chicken, which we added to an arugula salad, is easy to make. Thinly sliced chicken
breasts are coated in crispy panko, dipped in egg, and layered with more panko.
Then the panko coated chicken is quickly pan fried in butter until golden
brown. Bake for 20 minutes at 300 degrees.
Serving Eggs at Brunch - Your guests will likely expect eggs to be served with brunch, and these prosciutto egg cups are a fancier way to serve eggs. We kept the yolks of our eggs runny, but if some of your guests prefer cooked yolks, you can bake some of your eggs for another 5 minutes.
Decor: Less is more when you have beautiful and vibrantly colored food. We chose flowers as our centerpiece and a couple of additional items that coincided with the colors of the flowers we chose. It helps tie everything back together! We spent only $20 on decorations, proving you can throw a beautiful party on a budget!
Napkins: It’s the little
things at a brunch that make the biggest difference! These striped napkins
add another color to our palette and brought out the colors of the
sprinkles that we placed them by.
Flowers: The easiest way to
draw attention to your table is to choose a beautiful bouquet of flowers
as the centerpiece. It’s quick and easy and, along
with your food, will make the room smell incredible.
Dishes: We chose some cobalt blue patterned dishes to add another pop of color. Mixing and matching dishes is a way to keep things fun without being too formal. We also placed each dish in its own corner of the table with a good amount of space in between, so that guests could help themselves without bumping into one another. Small dishes are great for serving syrups and dressings without having to set the bottles out.
Strawberry Arugula Salad: This salad is perfect for people who prefer the lunch half of brunch. Plus, the recipe is easy - serve the panko-crusted chicken on a bed of arugula with crumbled goat cheese, walnuts, and sliced strawberries. Dress with a balsamic vinaigrette.
Mini Sprite Cupcakes: Mini cupcakes are great for brunch because guests can have one if they just want a taste of something sweet, or more if they really want to satisfy their sweet tooth. Using Sprite Zero instead of oil and eggs reduces the fat and number of calories in the cupcakes. Colored sprinkles make these cupcakes even more festive, and we dyed the frosting with food coloring to match our color scheme.
Labels: If you don’t have time to make individual place cards for the food and can use butcher paper like we did, the paper serves as the perfect background for your food labels. You can use combinations of cursive, lowercase and capital letters to create more interesting labels all with a Sharpie or permanent marker. Use arrows pointing toward your dish to add an additional fun touch.
Entertaining: Before your guests arrive, place all dishes that can be served at room temperature out on your table. For dishes that need to be served warm, arrange them on oven-safe serving platters so you can keep them warm in your oven and then take them straight to the table when you are ready to serve brunch. Pour juice into a pitcher to dress it up a bit. We picked up a pitcher at our grocery store for just a few dollars and will be able to reuse it for future parties.
Cinnamon raisin french toast
sticks: This recipe is a sophisticated take on a childhood favorite.
Making French toast sticks instead of whole pieces of French toast is
faster to prepare since you can fit more into the skillet, and the smaller
serving size means guests can have just a taste. To prepare, pull out a
stack of slices of cinnamon raisin bread and cut the slices into thirds.
Leave the bread out for an hour to get stale. Mix up ⅔ cup milk with 4
eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla. Soak each slice of bread in the batter, and
pan fry with butter. Garnish with strawberries and serve with maple syrup.
Presentation: Choosing a color scheme with a variety of bright colors meant that we could mix and match platters and decorations we already had with some that we purchased for the brunch.
Dressing for Brunch:
Kit (on the left) and Christine (on the right) dressed to match the
color scheme. Kit chose a white eyelet dress that is on trend for spring
and paired it with a bright belt and cobalt jewelry. Christine wore an
orchid top, as it’s both one of the biggest colors of the year and a soft spring
tone. She paired it with skinny jeans and heels to dress it up.
Time to Eat: The perfect brunch plate has a little bit of everything.
Kit Graham spends her time cooking up new creations in her kitchen and exploring Chicago’s ever-evolving culinary scene. She began blogging in 2011 when her friends gifted her a blog as a way to get her to share her recipes. In 2013, Kit wrote her first cookbook, The Gourmet Grilled Cheese Cookbook, which is an ode to her favorite meal from childhood. Kit was raised in Kennebunk, Maine, went to college in Massachusetts, and lived in New York City before settling in the Windy City. For more, head over to thekittchen.com where Kit shares original and practical recipes and Chicago restaurant reviews.
Christine Petric is the founder of The View From 5 ft. 2, a personal style and fashion blog. Christine provides style tips and inspiration with an additional petite perspective. She is a Texas native that currently resides in Chicago working for Groupon by day and additionally contributes to the StyleList network. Christine has been spotted on several publications such as Glamour.com, Lucky Magazine, Refinery 29, New York Magazine's The Cut, and Glitter Guide. When she's not blogging, she's exploring the city, learning photography and calligraphy or laughing about something somewhere.
Kit and Christine are part of The Opener, an exclusive, invite-only contributor network that will bring the best food, culture, and innovation writing to the pages of Coca-Cola Journey.