Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Make Your Ham Brunch Shine This Spring

It’s time to shed those winter layers and enjoy the warmth and brightness of the spring season. And what’s the best way to do this, you might ask? Why not give your spring occasions a taste of their own goodness by hosting a memorable, seasonally inspired brunch celebration.

The Ham Tradition
No spring brunch is complete without a beautiful ham as the centerpiece. But how did this tradition come to be?

Prior to modern refrigeration and all its conveniences, ham was cured during the cold winter months. This made spring the most-opportune time for folks to enjoy this delicious, much-anticipated treat.

Servings Made Simple
No matter what the occasion may be, you can easily transform it into something special with a mouthwatering ham centerpiece. Rule of thumb: plan on about 1/3-1/2 of a pound of ham for each guest. Of course, if you’re planning to enjoy leftovers, you might consider purchasing a slightly larger ham. Here’s a useful guide to follow, courtesy of The Honey Baked Ham Company:
  • 4 people – 1.8 pounds
  • 8 people – 3.6 pounds
  • 12 people – 5.4 pounds
  • 16 people – 7.2 pounds
Tip: Try serving your ham either family or buffet-style, allowing guests to pick and choose their slices to help reduce the wasting of food.

Table in Bloom
The easiest way to enhance your brunch setting is with a floral touch. Even a single bouquet of your favorite spring flowers (think hyacinths, daffodils or tulips) can add eye-catching flair to an otherwise ordinary tablescape.

Sides in Season
Spring brings with it a host of seasonal veggies just begging to be featured in your brunch spread. Consider preparing something that adds a dash of garden freshness, such as this Asparagus Tart, to the overall feast.

Effortless Entertaining
There’s no need to labor all morning to make your occasion feel special. Places such as HoneyBaked make it easy to serve delicious, quality dishes that also leave you plenty of time to spare. And back by popular demand this spring, they are serving up their ham and cheese quiche featuring slightly sweet crust (at participating locations for a limited time only).

For more ideas on making the best spring brunch yet, visit honeybaked.com.

Asparagus Tart

Serves  4
 

Ingredients

  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 shallot, finely chopped
  • 1 bunch (about 1 pound) trimmed asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 1 sheet puff pastry dough
  • 1/2 pound goat cheese
  • 2 tablespoons sliced sundried tomatoes, packed in oil
  • 3/4 cup diced Honey Baked Ham
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1 egg, yolk only
  • 1/2 teaspoon water

Preparation
  1. Heat oven to 450°F.
  2. In medium frying pan, saute butter and shallot over medium-high heat for about 1 minute.
  3. Add asparagus to pan and cook until tender, about 5 minutes.
  4. Set aside pan containing shallots and asparagus. Open puff pastry dough and, on lightly floured parchment, roll dough into rectangular shape, approximately 10-by-16 inches.
  5. Transfer and pat pastry dough onto baking sheet, leaving 1-inch border. Layer with goat cheese.
  6. On top of cheese, sprinkle shallots and asparagus, tomatoes, ham and salt and pepper, to taste.
  7. Brush edge of pastry with egg yolk mixed with water.
  8. Bake 20-25 minutes, until pastry is golden brown and puffy. Let cool slightly and serve.


SOURCE:  Honey Baked Ham

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