christmas brunch menu + a call for ideas!

by Amy on 17 December 2010

our christmas festivities with family typically don’t begin until the afternoon, so last year, honey + i decided to plan a christmas morning sparkling wine brunch at home for just the two of us. it was such a fun, relaxing start to the day that we knew we had to make it a yearly tradition.

for this year’s brunch, i’m making the pioneer woman‘s cinnamon rolls with maple frosting. note: her recipe makes SEVEN PANS of rolls, which seems a bit much, so i’ll be dividing the recipe by, um, seven. along with that, i’ll be cooking some thick-sliced applewood smoked bacon. to drink, we’ll have sofia blanc de blancs sparkling wine (a lovely brunch choice if you’re looking for one!) as well as espresso.

so here’s the big question: what else should i serve? i feel like i need one more addition to the menu to round out the meal. while cinnamon rolls + bacon sound delicious, i think another option could make brunch even better. what do you think? leave the menu as is? or add something else? suggestions?

your help is so appreciated! you all did a fantastic job with your suggestions for a dessert for our southwestern dinner party that i thought i would reach out to you again. thanks!

(also, let me confirm that my honey’s name isn’t *actually* honey. he has a real name, but most of you now know him as honey, so that’s what i put on this menu. rest assured, the christmas brunch menu on our table will feature his actual name!)

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{ 15 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Katie December 17, 2010 at 8:51 am

when our next-door-neighbor was about 2 years old she started calling my mom “honey” and to this day still calls her that. we’re pretty sure she picked it up from my dad :)

i think you should add a fresh fruit salad! oranges, blueberries, strawberries… mmmm!

2 amy December 17, 2010 at 9:45 am

aww, that’s so sweet! i have a few friends with moms or grandmas that go by ‘honey’ + i think it’s so charming!
i would love to add some fresh fruit, especially because it would add a bit of healthiness to the meal. i wish there was more in season locally right now. i was thinking of integrating something with pomegranates, but i’ve never done anything with ’em other than eat the seeds raw. i wonder how pomegranate seeds would be tossed over yogurt or something like that?

3 Tracey December 17, 2010 at 9:48 am

How great to start traditions,what a fabulous idea.Coming from Italian heritage, we have alot of traditions,that my kids love and expect.On Christmas morning we always have a batch of cinnamon bread that I make up the night before,and pop in the oven while the unwrapping gets underway,of course we always have lots of fruits and cheeses, and we also do a frittata,which I throw together the night before and also pop in the oven with the cinnamon bread,it works out well plus I dont have to stand in the kitchen and keep an eye on everything.I am sure whatever you make your” honey” will love,and the most important part is the memories.

4 amy December 17, 2010 at 10:25 am

i love that you have so many great traditions, + you’re super smart to do most of the work the night before. like you said, it’s no fun to spend all your time in the kitchen when everyone is out socializing – i’m working on getting better at prepping/preparing as much beforehand as possible.
i like your idea of just putting some cheeses out on the table as well – i eat bread/cheese at all hours of the day + it would be a nice savory contrast to the cinnamon rolls, plus it would work well with the bacon. simple, but delicious!

5 Lesley December 17, 2010 at 10:38 am


[you can use butter instead of a vegan “butter”, if you like]

Scones are great for brunches, I think because they are generally not too sweet. And I got really great feedback on these. Also, they’re not hard to make and you can make them well in advance. They stay fresh-tasting for quite a while!

6 amy December 17, 2010 at 10:41 am

i love scones, although i rarely make them – it’s probably been years since i last did. i don’t know why, as i dig ’em because they aren’t as sweet as other breakfast ‘sweets,’ as you said. question – if i substitute regular butter + whole milk/buttermilk (although i do like soy milk), would i keep the amounts the same? or adjust the amounts since whole milk/buttermilk has a different texture/thickness than soy milk?

i will definitely be making scones soon – maybe even this weekend! you + another foodie friend have both suggested them to me in the past few days, so now (of course) they are all i can think about!

7 Lesley December 17, 2010 at 10:45 am

Keep the amounts the same, but I wouldn’t use buttermilk.

8 Vivek Surti December 17, 2010 at 10:46 am

This is a cool idea – I love cinnamon rolls. I would add something savory to the menu.

I think maybe like sweet potato latkes with some sauteed apples that then have a dollop of yogurt/pomegranate with some mint. (I came up with that while writing…and it sounds pretty good!)

9 amy December 17, 2010 at 11:26 am

yes, i definitely agree – more savory! i’ve made curried sweet potato latkes before + loved ’em! i actually think the curried version could work fairly well here, as could a non-curried. + with the yogurt/pomegranate + mint – heavenly!

i almost want to save this for a first course for a dinner one night because it sounds so delicious – i don’t want it to get overshadowed by the rich ooey gooeyness of the cinnamon rolls. thanks for an awesome idea, vivek!

10 Wendy (The Weekend Gourmet) December 17, 2010 at 11:27 am

I think a yogurt parfait…Greek yogurt mixed with honey and cinnamon and topped with some fruit…would make a nice not-too-sweet addition! The sweet cinnamon rolls need to be the star of the show, but a nice parfait would be perfect to balance with the salty bacon. And? I LOVE Sofia sparkling…so good!!

11 amy December 17, 2010 at 12:27 pm

i think i agree. there are so many delicious suggestions so far — scones, sweet potato latkes, frittatas — but i would feel bad if they got overlooked because of the cinnamon rolls.

i am almost leaning towards doing something simpler that will compete less with the cinnamon rolls, like bread/cheese, macerated fruit, or your fab greek yogurt parfait suggestion! the flavor combination of the greek yogurt/honey/cinnamon would complement the flavors in the cinnamon rolls nicely without competing. thanks for your idea, wendy!

12 Dayna December 17, 2010 at 1:49 pm

I’ve been wanting to try The Pioneer Woman’s cinnamon rolls for a while…they are on my Christmas day menu as well! (Look around her site because she also has a chocolate chip variation and an orange roll variation that look VERY yummy!!)

13 amy December 17, 2010 at 2:08 pm

ha, that’s fabulous that we’re both making them on christmas! great minds think alike. =) i saw the orange roll variation, but i must’ve missed the chocolate chip kind. i love chocolate chip anything (our last year’s brunch featured fancy chocolate chip pancakes) so i’ll have to check those out, thanks.

wishing us both luck on our christmas day cinnamon rolls! happy holidays to you + your family!

14 Sheri O'Neill December 17, 2010 at 3:25 pm

My vote is for the greek yogurt fruit parfait, with pomegranate seeds and honey. Usually I’m more of a savory brunch person but your menu selections so far sound heavenly!

15 amy December 17, 2010 at 3:48 pm

i almost always vote savory over sweet, too. honey loves breakfast sweets, so this is our version of a savory/sweet compromise. =) i think i’m leaning towards the greek yogurt/honey/cinnamon/pomegranate seeds, too. easy, quick, tasty, + not-too-heavy. thanks for your feedback!

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