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Feb 8, 2014 10:31 AM

Continental Breakfast Challenge - so sick of Costco muffins & Yoplait.

I am tasked with organizing (from shopping, prep, set up & clean up) of our Jr. High Student of the Month Breakfasts. The challenges are: only 30 minutes of set up, only 30 minutes for entire function. It happens at 7:15am. Budget is somewhat limited but not horrible. This breakfast is for approximately 30 - 40 people. Thank you.

The last two times I have served yogurts, Costco muffins (halved), another pastry - Mini Cinnamon Rolls or halved Costco Strudel. Mini Bagels with cream cheese packets. Fruit - halved bananas, grape clusters and sliced oranges. Juice, Coffee & Hot Water (carafes) with tea & condiments.

I want to do something SPECIAL and not so BOOOOORRRING.

Any creative ideas are much welcome. This is an easy to please crowd, I had a tablecloth & tiered servers and you would have thought I brought a caterer in.

Thanks so much,
Julia in Woodinville, WA

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  1. How many people are you serving?

    2 Replies
      1. re: ttoommyy

        Dang! You are right!

        My apologies, this will teach me to never post before my second cup of coffee.

    1. Oh Lord! I am soooo with you on the standard "conference" breakfast a la Costco! I always feel crappy from so much carbohydrate with caffeine.

      What about sliced ham and cheeses, non sugary rolls, bagels with a few spreads (one cream cheese type, one nut butter type) and some sliced fruit?

      2 Replies
      1. re: sedimental

        Yes! I do love the idea of sliced meat & cheese. I would love to eat that. I may be wrong, but that seems more "European" than what we typically do here in the Northwest.

        1. re: Juliamay

          I think it sounds lovely too!

          Just call it a danish buffet, with things to make open faced sandwiches.

      2. Build your own breakfast parfaits with big bowls of vanilla and plain yogurt (kept on ice), granola, fresh fruit sald, toasted coconut, dried fruits and any other toppings you think people may like. Also, whenever we have something like this at work, there are usually hard boiled eggs. People go crazy over them. The night before, someone hard boils 2 or 3 dozen eggs, puts them back in the carton and in the fridge. Easy to transport to work the next day and you just set out the cartons when you get there.

        5 Replies
        1. re: ttoommyy

          Excellent idea about the hard boiled eggs! I have been served them before in this type of venue and really liked it. Don't forget the salt and pepper.

          Also, you could make up a light egg salad for a spread on bagels.

          1. re: ttoommyy

            Dumb question - do I need to peel the eggs to serve them? That is totally a PITA to me. :) Great idea if they can DIY.

            1. re: Juliamay

              Costco occasionally has pre-peeled hard boiled eggs in with their cheeses. They come in a big bag. I've seen them on occasion at grocery stores too. They aren't a regular item at Costco though. And who knew you could buy eggs like that - and they tasted great.

              1. re: thimes

                Don't know if you have it, but I once saw peeled hard boiled eggs at Cash and Carry.

                Also, once I learnt a decent method of hard boiling, I've found peeling much easier. Put room temp eggs in cold water, bring to boil, once boiling turn off heat, leave 10 minutes. Drain pot, fill with cold water and as it's filling crack all the eggs (once). Leave for maybe ten minutes, then they should peel easily.

            2. re: ttoommyy

              I have served a buffet for that size of group and have brought hard boiled eggs which are an excellent protein for breakfast. However, some complained about the smell of them so I kept them in a covered dish. We always have some fresh fruit on our table, which always goes over well. My budget was $40 to $50 and we always managed to have a cheese, a plate of rolled ham, some pate and rolls.

            3. My high schooler has to take a mid-morning snack about 2 times a year for a group of 10...perennial favorites are croissants, nutella & strawberries; mini almond bear claws from Safeway; bagels with plain cream cheese & strawberry cream cheese.

              DD says for some reason, the boys love the bear claws. And 3/4 kids like plain cream cheese & 1/4 like strawberry.

              I'm sure homemade banana bread, cranberry bread, etc. would go over well too.

              1 Reply
              1. re: ceekskat

                Great ideas - thank you! Funny about the cream cheese.

              2. I agree about the hard boiled eggs---people love them! And since peeling them is the hassle, bringing them still in the shell and letting the attendees peel them reduces your work load tremendously.

                I love deviled eggs, but they are a lot of work.

                We have served excellent hard rolls (made of baguette dough) with unsalted butter, a variety of jams and curds, and very thin slices of cheese, and that has been very well received. I have never baked Costco's baguettes, but I have heard they are good. You could bake them at home, let them cool, and then serve slices of baguette instead of hard rolls with the above additions.

                1 Reply
                1. re: soccermom13

                  for easy deviled eggs, boil off what you need and chuck the lot in a big bowl of iced water. peel. scoop out the yolks and lay the whites, hollow side down, on towels to drain and dry. meanwhile put the yolk in your food pro with whatever is your go-to mix. whiz. place in ziploc bag. put dry whites in separate bag, being careful not to smoosh or break.

                  at event, line whites up on platters, snip the corner of yolk-mix ziploc and pipe out each egg. lightning-fast.

                  but just offering hard-boiled eggs, still in the shell, is still TOTES easier. :)