Get Ready for Easter Brunch

— Written By N.C. Cooperative Extension

Celebrate Easter Sunday with a special brunch featuring classic and seasonal dishes. Pick the perfect recipes to share with your family and friends. Most of these have been made lighter, except a few that are too classic to change!! Enjoy!

Soft Scrambled Eggs with Asparagus

Ingredients

  • 18 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • ⅓ cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 1 cup finely chopped small asparagus
  • ¼ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

Directions

  1. Combine first 4 ingredients in a medium bowl, stirring with a whisk.
  2. Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium heat. Add 2 tablespoons oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add eggs and asparagus to pan. Reduce heat to medium-low. Cook 8 minutes or until eggs are soft and begin to set, stirring frequently. Stir in parsley; drizzle with remaining 1 tablespoon oil.

Serves 12. Each ⅓ cup serving contains Calories 146, Fat 10.9 g, Protein 10 g, Carbohydrate 2 g, Fiber 0.0 g, Cholesterol 280 mg, Sodium 304 mg.

Lemon Ginger Bundt Cake

Ingredients

  • 1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature, plus more for pan
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour (spooned and leveled), plus more for pan
  • 2 tablespoons finely grated lemon zest and ⅓ cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
  • ⅓ cup minced crystallized ginger
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2½ cups granulated sugar
  • 6 large eggs
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • Confectioners’ sugar, for dusting

Directions

  1. Preheat oven to 350°F. Butter and flour a standard 12-cup Bundt pan. In a medium bowl, whisk together flour, lemon zest, ginger, baking soda, and salt; set aside.
  2. Using an electric mixer, beat butter and granulated sugar on medium-high until light and fluffy, 4 to 5 minutes. Add eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition; mix in lemon juice.
  3. With mixer on low, alternately add flour mixture in three parts and sour cream in two, beginning and ending with flour mixture; mix just until incorporated (do not over mix). Spoon batter into prepared pan, and smooth top with a rubber spatula. Firmly tap pan on a work surface to level batter.
  4. Bake until a toothpick inserted in center of cake comes out clean, 55 to 60 minutes (if cake browns too quickly, tent loosely with aluminum foil). Let cake cool in pan 30 minutes, then turn out onto a rack to cool completely. (To store, wrap cake in plastic, and keep at room temperature, up to 3 days.) Dust with confectioners’ sugar before serving.

Slow Cooked Mexican Breakfast Casserole

Ingredients

  • 1½ cups low-fat milk
  • 1 jalapeño, seeded, finely chopped
  • 1 pound bulk sausage, cooked and drained
  • 1 red bell pepper, chopped
  • ¾ cup sliced green onions
  • 2 cups low-fat Mexican blend cheese
  • Cooking spray
  • 9 corn tortillas
  • ½ cup salsa, optional
  • Pickled jalapeño slices, optional

Directions

  1. In medium bowl, beat eggs, milk, and jalapeño with a whisk. Combine the sausage, chopped red pepper, green onions, jalapeño, and cheese in a separate bowl. Set both aside.
  2. Spray a 5- to 6-quart slow cooker with cooking spray. Place 3 tortillas in a slow cooker, tearing, if needed, to cover the bottom.
  3. Top the tortillas in slow cooker with half of the sausage, bell pepper, green onion, and cheese mixture. Layer 3 tortillas on top, then top those tortillas with the rest of the sausage, vegetable, and cheese mixture. Top that layer with remaining 3 tortillas, tearing, if needed, to cover mixture. Pour egg mixture over tortillas.
  4. Cover, and cook on low for 4 to 5 hours or on the high setting for 2 to 3 hours, or until temperature reaches 160°F and center is set.
  5. Serve with salsa, jalapeños, scallions, and whatever other toppings you wish.

Serves 8. Each serving contains  Calories 386, Fat 24 g, Cholesterol 221 mg, Sodium 703 mg, Carbohydrates 17.9 g, Fiber 2.6 g, Protein 24.7 g.

Baked Apple Cinnamon French Toast

Ingredients

  • 3 cups nonfat milk
  • 2 cups pasteurized liquid egg whites, such as Egg Beaters
  • 3 tablespoons honey
  • 1½ teaspoons vanilla extract
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 1 1-pound loaf sliced whole-wheat bread
  • 1 cup chopped dried apples, (3 ounces)
  • ½ cup raisins
  • 1½ teaspoons ground cinnamon
  • ½ teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar

Directions

  1. Whisk milk, egg whites, honey, vanilla and salt in a large bowl.
  2. Trim crusts off 8 bread slices and set aside. Cut the crusts and the remaining bread into 1-inch pieces. Toss with dried apples, raisins, cinnamon and nutmeg in another large bowl.
  3. Coat a 9×13-inch baking pan with cooking spray. Transfer the bread mixture to the pan. Lay the reserved crustless slices evenly on top, trimming to fit. Whisk the milk mixture one more time, then pour evenly over the bread. Press the bread down with the back of a wooden spoon, making sure it’s evenly moist. Cover with parchment paper, then foil, and refrigerate for at least 8 hours or up to 24 hours.
  4. Preheat oven to 350°F. Bake the casserole, covered, for 40 minutes. Uncover and continue baking until puffed, set and lightly browned, about 20 minutes more. Let stand for 10 minutes; dust with confectioners’ sugar and serve.

Serves 12. Each serving contains Calories 183, Fat 1 g, Cholesterol 1 mg, Carbohydrates 33 g, Protein 10 g, Fiber 4 g, Sodium 344 mg.

Protein Packed Asparagus, Potato and Cheddar Frittata

Ingredients

  • 8 large eggs
  • ¼ cup grated Parmigiano Reggiano (about ½ ounce)
  • 3 tablespoons chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne
  • 2 to 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium red potato (about ½ pound) scrubbed and cut into ½-inch dice (about 1½ cups)
  • 1 medium yellow onion, thinly sliced
  • ½ pound medium-thick asparagus, trimmed and cut on the diagonal into 1-inch pieces
  • 3 cloves garlic, minced
  • 6 ounces shredded sharp cheddar (about 1¾ lightly packed cups)

Directions

  1. In a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, Parmigiano, parsley, ½ teaspoon salt, ⅛ teaspoon pepper, and the cayenne.
  2. Heat two tablespoons of the oil in a 10-inch ovenproof nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add the potato and ¼ teaspoon salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until browned on several sides, 6 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a bowl with a slotted spoon.
  3. Reduce the heat to medium. If the pan is dry, add the remaining 1 tablespoon of oil. Add the onion and cook, stirring frequently, until it softens and begins to brown, 4 to 5 minutes. Stir in the asparagus, garlic, ¼ teaspoon salt, and ⅛ teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, until the asparagus is bright green and crisp-tender, 3 to 4 minutes. Lower the heat to medium low and add the egg mixture and the potatoes, stirring until the ingredients are combined, 10 to 15 seconds. Add the cheddar and stir until well distributed. Cook without stirring until the eggs have almost set, 10 to 12 minutes. (The center may still be loose but should be bubbling a little; the sides should be set.)
  4. Meanwhile, position an oven rack 6 inches from the broiler element and heat the broiler to high. Transfer the skillet to the oven and broil until the eggs have set completely and the top of the frittata is golden brown, 1 to 3 minutes. Let rest for 5 minutes. Transfer to a cutting board, cut into wedges, and serve.

Serves 8. Each serving contains 250 calories.