Critique my Valentine's Day Brunch menu!
I'm planning on serving this picnic-style as a surprise for my beloved. Here is my menu so far. Feel free to critique my choices!
1 - Veggie Quiche (not too rich since I wil be serving sandwiches too. Any favorite recipes out there? I was thinking of a light spinach quiche with feta or goat cheese.
2 - Prosciutto and Mozzarella sandwich - with pesto sauce and tomatoes. I would love to make it a panini, but I'm afraid it won't be warm and the bread will be soggy, so it will just have to be a sandwich. What type of bread? Ciabatta? Baguette?
3 - Salad - mixed greens with pears, gorgonzola, and sweet walnuts. Our favorite salad from our favorite restaurant with a walnut-raspberry dressing.
4 - Big Challenge - heart-shaped Raspberry Cheesecakes. I bought these really cute heart shaped individual springform pans. I will be using Martha Stewart's raspberry swirl cheesecake recipe. Any ideas on how to incorporate white chocolate into this recipe? How should I alter the recipe to make 3 or 4 of these cakes? The original recipe is for a 9 inch pan, so I'm thinking about 4 or 5 small hearts per 1 full recipe. Maybe I'll just make the whole thing and see how far it takes me. Or halve it.
5 - Maybe also a small cheese and fruit platter to munch on
What else would you add? Take out? I'm open to suggestions!
Seriously? Individually, these all sound like good dishes but my immediate reaction is waaaay too much cheese. Yes, such a thing *is* possible! Also, generally just too much for only two people.
I'd lose the sandwiches, for starters. Quiche and salad (that sounds like a delicious salad) and some nice crusty bread on the side will be plenty. Skip the cheese and fruit plate too, at least the cheese part. A fruit salad or plate of nicely sliced and presented fruits would be better.
I'm not sure I'd serve cheesecake to follow quiche and a salad containing cheese. I would probably prefer a chocolate-raspberry brownie. You could make these in your heart shaped pans and drizzle them with a little white chocolate. If your heart pans only took half of the brownie batter, you could cook the rest in a loaf pan and save them for another meal where presentation wasn't so important.
It's taken me a long, long time to learn not to make too much food for special occasions. But really, just because it's a special occasion doesn't mean you can eat five times as much as usual. Twice will be plenty. ;)
i probably wouldn't serve a quiche ahead of a sandwich. maybe some honeyed figs with green herbs.
personally i'd rather have lox, bagels and creram cheese than a ham/cheese sandwich. more elegant would be cold poached salmon and bread, and dressings.
speaking as a guy, i don't think i'd need or want a cheese/fruit plate after cheesecake. dessert and an invitation to the other room would be dandy on valentines day.
Skip the quiche and sandwiches and serve Monte Cristo sandwiches (ham&cheese in French toast form) plus the salad and the cheesecake. Optional: a small cup of cream of tomato or other pureed soup. Maybe a little bit of fruit (melon/grapes/berries &/or pineapple) on the plate with the sandwiches.
Was it your intention to serve cheese in every course? I have to agree with the other posters in that unless it is your express intention to fit cheese in every dish, you have too much and too many varieties of cheese that is going to take away from each other.
If you do indeed want to serve cheese at every course, then you should start with the mildest to the strongest...here, you have the mildest, the cheesecake at the end of the meal and a strong cheese, feta or goat at the beginning of the meal.
My suggestion is that you keep the quiche, but don't add cheese or add the cheese but lose it in sandwich...and serve with the salad which is fine as is....instead of making sandwiches way you have it, why not make crostini, you can use toasted sliced baguette with the pesto..top with tomatoes and prosciutto (which is great oven crispy, by the way) ...this way, it's not too filling...
Definitely don't need the cheese in the fruit platter...If you're going to keep the cheesecake and want to make the entire recipe, you don't need to alter it other than making extra crust, the filling should stay the same and you have to adjust the cooking time.
i agree that the sandwich is unnecessary.. instead, maybe just some marinated grilled vegetables. -mushrooms, eggplant, asparagus, etc.
add for the salad, if you want to cut down on the cheese overlap, i'd go for something more acidic, using hearts of palm and artichoke hearts...
for dessert, i'd say just choc dipped strawberries :-)
brunch! so good, so many options...i love the idea of a quiche - but i'd do it up rich and lose the sandwich. if you want - push your sammy ingredients into your quiche and serve with a nice crusty baguette - YUM! then i'd seriously consider a fruit salad - fruit is sexy. a side of something potato-like might be nice. i'd make your cheesecakes, but eat them later on in the day. :) good luck!
I didn't realize I had so much cheese going on! It wasn't my intention to cheese-overload. I just picked a few of our favorite things, which happen to have cheese! I definitely want to keep the salad and the cheesecake. I have to decide whether to make a quiche, or a sandwich as the main. I think a quiche is more challenging to make than a sandwich, but on the other hand a sandwich is probably more filling and "manly" lol. Maybe i'll make a mini quiche for me and a sandwich for him!
Thanks for the feedback! BTW, I guarantee you it isn't too much food for my better half. He has a huge appetite!
The difference between quiche and savory cheesecake is mainly the crust - you really don't need two cheese-egg custard variants in the same menu. Since you really want the cheesecake, better to go a little lighter on the rest of the meal, so you and your sweetie aren't feeling stuffed by the time you bring out the piece-de-resistance!