Before I start this Mother's Day post I need to recognize today, May 22, as a very special day and say Happy Birthday, Mom!
Now on to the Mother's Day Brunch 2009 recap!
This past Friday saw another yummy Mother's Day brunch and a very fun day for my mom and me.
Half and Half with Lemonade Ice Cubes
Blueberry Maple Breakfast Bake
Cardamom Citrus Fruit Salad
Kale with Pinto Beans and Roasted Red Peppers
Sage-Mustard Breakfast Sausage
Ricotta-Mascarpone Mousse with Balsamic Strawberries
It was all delicious! My notes for next time:
--The lemonade tea was a bit tart for me, so I would increase the simple syrup by another 1/4 to 1/2 cup. I didn't leave enough time for the ice cubes to freeze, so they were a bit liquidy. Next time I will make the lemonade and the ice cubes a day ahead.
--The blueberry maple bake was SO easy, SO delicious and looked very impressive; I assembled it the night before and put it straight into the oven an hour before lunch. I want to try it with whole wheat bread next time.
--Instead of cutting up all the fruit for the citrus salad I took a shortcut and mostly used drained canned fruit: citrus salad, red grapefruit and mandarin oranges. I did actually section one navel orange myself. The salad was great; yay, canned fruit! Next time I would make the salad the day before.
--This kale dish is SO good. I made it for dinner a couple weeks ago and both hubs and I liked it. I am always looking for ways to make our vegetables interesting and yummy, and this recipe is GREAT. Mom likes veggies, so I thought she might like this (she did!).
--Sausage was easy and yummy. I used powdered sage as my local store didn't have fresh sage. Next time I will either make the meat mixture a day ahead and cook the sausage right before lunch, or cook the sausages a day ahead and heat them up before lunch.
--OH MY GOSH...ricotta-mascarpone mousse + balsamic strawberries = HEAVEN. Absolute heaven. I had some of the left over strawberries and mousse for breakfast Saturday AND Sunday...so ridiculously good. This is a simple dish, and it looks all frou frou and impressive. And in case I didn't say, its delicious.
--Each time I host a dinner I see myself improving. From absolutely wigging out and darting around getting not much of anything done to this time working steadily without wigging out, I'm getting closer and closer to having the food on the table when I want to with an absolute minimum of stress. This time I made a timeline detailing when to do each step in the whole process, but I didn't plan enough time in for prep work (chopping things, etc...I chop really slowly), so I will give myself more wiggle room in my next timeline. I also left myself too much to prepare the day of the brunch. Next time I will prepare as much of the food as possible the day before, so that the day of I have very little to do and can spend more time on the details (presentation, table decoration etc).
The little brother ("little" as in he turned 22 this year) came a bit early and hung out as he had to race back to work. Sadly Dad had to work, so he didn't make it to lunch. Hubs, mom and I had a relaxed time over our lunch talking about all sorts of things. Hubs took mom on a tour of our two vegetable gardens. Mom and I talked and looked at my blog; I let her read the entire first page before I told her no more, she could read my blog at her house, we had to go have fun now :) I presented her with a little gift bag containing a Mother's Day treat, and she wanted me to take a picture before she opened it, so we ended up outside on the front stoop. She wanted one of the pots of begonias I had planted to be in the picture, too (I swear, she's just about the cutest woman you will ever meet...she really takes delight in the small things like a pot of begonias her daughter managed not to kill), so she ended up sitting on the front stoop next to the pot. After a couple pictures I came and sat down as she opened her little treat (chocolate covered cherries from Italy! she loves choc covered cherries).
There we were sitting on the stoop looking out over the yard that is luxuriously shaded with not 1, not 2, but 3 of the cutest trees you'll ever see. The sky was blue with a few puffy white clouds, the birds were singing and a breeze was blowing. Cue another one of those moments where you just have to feel grateful for all God has given you.
After we tore ourselves away from admiring the lovely day, I introduced her to Schwartzentruber's Bakery here in Abbeville; we left with danish for dad, wheat bread and slices of homemade cake (I got pound cake with lemon icing...it was soooo good). Then we trolled through our local video place and after much consideration we came away with Twilight (she hadn't seen it and wanted to). After a short drive around Abbeville we made one last very important stop: the ice cream shop. Can it really be girls' day without ice cream present? Ice creams in hand we headed home and settled in for the movie before she headed home. It was a lovely, lovely day! I don't remember the last time we spent time doing whatever we wanted without much of a deadline. I think she really enjoyed herself, and hopefully she felt very loved and celebrated.
Here we are; and the begonias, too :)