All you need are some flavorful ingredients and some quick and easy tips.
“Brunch is about good food, good friends and good times. But today, what you serve to drink is just as important as the food,” says Padma Lakshmi, cookbook author and host of Bravo’s popular reality TV show, Top Chef.
“Create a ‘taste’ experience,” suggests Lakshmi. Greet guests with an original, but premium specialty drink as soon as they walk in the door, and remember to treat all beverages like a fine wine when sitting down to brunch. Just as it’s traditional to pair the right wine with the right foods, you’ll want to complement your dishes with the right beverages at brunch, too.
Lakshmi recommends pairing her Orange Blossom Waffles with the sweet taste of Tropicana Pure Valencia for a mouthful of flavor. This premium juice is made from only Valencia oranges, which spend more than a year ripening in the Florida sunshine, and are known for their deep, rich color, exceptional juiciness and succulent taste.
Orange Blossom Waffles
4 large eggs, separated
2 cups whole milk
1/2 cup melted butter, cooled
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons baking powder
1 teaspoon baking soda
1 tablespoon sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon grated fresh nutmeg
3 tablespoons orange blossom water
In bowl, beat egg yolks, then add milk, cooled melted butter, and vanilla. Sift together flour, baking powder, baking soda, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg. Gradually add dry ingredients to egg mixture and beat well. Separately, beat egg whites until stiff. Carefully fold whites into batter, then beat in orange blossom water. Using Belgian waffle iron per manufacturer’s directions, cook the waffles. Dust with sifted confectioners’ sugar, tapping and pushing it though a sieve with the back of a spoon. Serve with honey, maple syrup, or preserved fruit sauce. Serves 4-6.
*From Padma Lakshmi’s Tangy Tart Hot & Sweet, published by Weinstein Books
Lakshmi suggests easy and elegant brunch tips for hosting the perfect at-home brunch: Decorate by sprinkling rose petals across the tablescape instead of placing them in customary flower vases. Decide on a diverse group of people to attend to spark good conversations. Put a drink in the hand of your guests to set the mood as they arrive. Offer them a special, personalized drink, or create a make-your-own mocktail or cocktail bar with juices and exotic fruit garnishes. For more information about Tropicana Pure Valencia and other complementary flavors, visit www.TropicanaPure.com. Courtesy of Family Features.