I can’t explain quite why I enjoy baking so much. Most of my making (food, crafts, art) is an attempt to understand and connect with the world. The inner workings of a croissant may not reveal the true nature of the universe, but it is ever so much more meaningful to me than just buying and consuming a pastry (we live near so many good bakeries that I buy and consume often, too!).
Sometimes I day dream about opening a tiny cafe. Something laid back, out of the way, sun filled where the customers never complain and the baking is never rushed. I’d love to be able to try all kinds of recipes and fill friendly hands and mouths ready and willing to taste. I’ve been employed by or involved in commercial food production from farms to cheese making to bakeries and when it is required for making a living, rather than for enjoyment and the happiness of yourself and others, it can quickly become a tedious obligation. I find great satisfaction in a job well done, in knowing how to manage time and make everything work out right, but it would be harder to find the joy in it when trying to keep a business afloat.
In the meantime, we have a monthly brunch at our place which gives me a chance to try new recipes, embark on more extensive baking projects, and feed hungry and appreciative friends. I love making food for other people, and using gatherings as an excuse to cook and bake to my heart’s content, but I am not the most comfortable or confident host. I’ve always longed for the easy friendships that make connecting and spending time together as simple as just asking, not having to juggle schedules or feel like people have better things to do. It takes a long time for me to feel totally comfortable in these relationships, so perhaps it will never feel effortless but it is certainly a worthwhile way to try to grow our community and strengthen friendships.
Hosting brunch works really well for us. We don’t have to worry about bedtime, kids can play freely while adults talk and eat, many friends can find time one Sunday a month, and I always have ideas for things to make. My brunch menu usually consists of some sort of baked good, eggs (fritatta, quiche, scrambled or other), fruit, and often another side, this week it was skillet potatoes and veggies. I guess it is more br- than -unch but I try to have a mix of savory and sweet. A few more favorites, if you need brunch inspiration: these sauces and eggs were a big hit, I used the Tartine Bread recipe for the croissants, homemade pop tarts, make a batch of chai tea. I’m thinking about bagels or maybe french toast next.
What are your favorite things to cook or eat for brunch?
BritaFebruary 4, 2016 at 3:08 pm
Not surprisingly, we are fans of the brunch recipes in the Smitten Kitchen cookbook – particularly the shakshuka and the incredibly indulgent, but INSANELY DELICIOUS New York casserole.
Your croissants are works of art!
Mary Anne's AlaskaFebruary 6, 2016 at 12:01 am
I think brunch is a wonderful way to gather without quite as much pressure or fanfare as a dinner party. However, I don't often host brunches, but you're inspiring me to! Your creations look delicious and beautiful!
XanFebruary 9, 2016 at 9:43 am
I'm so impressed that you host a monthly brunch – what a lovely way to gather and connect plus a terrific excuse to bake up a storm. Those pastries look amazing!!!! Just the pictures are making my mouth water! I love hosting brunches or lunches and totally agree with you about having those meal times work. Dinners don't work for us because my kids tend to have a different body clock to our friends. They are in bed early (and up early) and they don't manage late nights very well. So I give day time socialising a big thumbs up. Also, since becoming a mum I've totally relaxed as a host and don't put nearly the same level of pressure on myself. These days it's all about… "bring a plate to share and please don't expect a tidy house". The usual response I get from guests is filled with humour and relief. Things aren't perfect and it seems to make everyone more comfortable. I always tell people that they are welcome to make themselves at home in my kitchen too 🙂 xo
AnnaFebruary 9, 2016 at 1:32 pm
Sounds delicious! I love that there are so many recipes to try.
AnnaFebruary 9, 2016 at 1:33 pm
We really like having a laid back time to get together with friends and it works really well when you have little ones. Plus, who doesn't like breakfast food?
AnnaFebruary 9, 2016 at 1:35 pm
We keep it really relaxed, too. Usually there are a bunch of kids running around, which sometimes gets a little wild in our apartment, but it is such a nice way for the adults to connect while the kids play. I strive to create a home where friends are always welcome and no one worries too much about tidiness. And, I'm always up for any reason to bake 🙂
Mascarpone Vanilla Ice Cream – Anna HewittMay 18, 2017 at 11:22 pm
[…] and mascarpone may be the rarest of all. I made some mascarpone butter to put on french toast for brunch and before that I was over, I had a plan to make ice cream with the rest of it. It might seem […]
Comments are closed.