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Apr 18, 2014 12:56 PM

I need a veggie suggestion for Easter brunch

For dinner we'll have carrot & leek soup, salad of greens topped with roasted beets and crisp fried carrot curls, ham, scalloped potatoes and asparagus with hollandaise.

For brunch I'm planning tossed greens, cheese soufflé and a cinnamon coffee cake. I'd like to add a veggie but I've already hit all the Spring notes I can think of for dinner. I'd do a zucchini carpaccio but one of the guests has an allergy to zucchini and my husband just doesn't like it.

What can you suggest?

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  1. To me, spinach and asparagus are as spring-y as it gets, and all I ever serve at Easter. Not much else locally available this time of year. I buy fresh from the farm stand, it's all they're selling right now.

    Why not creamed spinach or spinach salad with hard boiled eggs, instead of the fallish salad you have planned?

    2 Replies
    1. re: coll

      We live in SoCal and I've always been so disappointed with the spinach we get here. I don't think it ever gets cold enough for the varieties that have real flavor.

      Good spinach and parsnips are some of the things I still miss from the Northeast.

      1. re: rainey

        I never loved spinach until I started getting it from nearby, I always eat too much this time of year!

    2. An approach I use is to think through the rainbow-- ROYGBIV.
      You have R _______, O carrots; Y ______; G greens, leek, asparagus; B ______, I _______, V Beets; and then make sure I don't have too many on the "grayscale"- brown, beige, white.
      Here's a pretty nice page with fruits and veg sorted by colour:

      11 Replies
            1. re: rainey

              Eggplant, some carrots, some tomatoes, and there's a "blurple" cauliflower. And the starchy veg.s of potato and corn.

              1. re: Kris in Beijing

                i find those blue potatoes and carrots very off-putting.

                1. re: hotoynoodle

                  I can take the carrots and some purple things but it takes an act of will for me to eat purple potatoes too. ; > And then they don't turn out to be special enough to make it a worthwhile exercise.

                  There's something about blue in food that sets off a lot of subliminal warning systems.

                  1. re: hotoynoodle

                    there are some very interesting South American recipes that involve blue potatoes among many other types. They aren't a recent freak of nature at all, were cultivated thousands of years ago, just comparatively new to the North American market and even more recently cultivated in the US. The blue version has a different profile of antioxidants.


                    I love to cook by color, in part, so a red, blue, yellow, and white potato combo is fun for me. So is a fruit salad of raspberries, blueberries, blackberries, pom seeds...golden raspberries as well, tiny red currants, gooseberries, and add in some kiwi slices....

                    Each to his/her own....I think white asparagus is a horrible idea, but many love it, and I don't want to see a blue tomato! Now, winter squash in all colors, I go for that, as well.

                    1. re: Madrid

                      i wasn't suggesting the blue/purple potatoes were new cultivars, even if they only broke stateside in the 80s.

                      1. re: Madrid

                        I agree with you, really, Madrid. I love to see more color in foods and I grow multicolored carrots, red & purple lettuces, "black" and yellow tomatoes and an heirloom purple "green" bean (turns green when cooked). They all have fabulous flavor and, I'm convinced, more or different nutritional value.

                        I just have all kinds of visceral reactions to blue food. I can remember, as a child, wanting to put blue frosting on a cake. Blue was my favorite color. When it came to eating it though, I just had a hard time doing it. I suspect that it has something to do with the color of spoilage. …tho I bless the first person to regard a blue cheese and say "I don't care. I'm going to give it a try." ; >

                        1. re: rainey

                          I get that blue prompts a visceral reaction in people when it's food. I suspect it's an innate biological reaction that helped preserve the species. I don't have favorite flavor of "kool pops" AKA freezie pops as a child was the blue one. No Idea why, they were all fake, chemical flavors. The blue especially fake, it was nothing like blueberry. I've also had a few blue margaritas.

                          I hope you have great Easter meals; your menu plans sound so good. I'm in Boston and so jealous of your growing season in Calif. Those heirloom purple green beans are wonderful; that's something we can get here. And the different colors of "mustard" greens, of which we see only one or two.

                          My son once had blue frosted cupcakes for his birthday, when he was 6, I think, and he became very alarmed after he went to the bathroom and the product was green. That blue frosting cannot be good for any living creature! He still remembers it vividly and comes to close to running away from any blue food.

                2. My immediate thought was asparagus, but I see you already have that. Now, this isn't a vegetable, but it is a fruit and served this way is more savory than sweet - cantaloupe carpaccio:

                  Another thought (although this one says summer to me more than spring) is a cucumber/avocado soup.

                    1. re: Gastronomos

                      Oh yea, steamed in the microwave for ten minutes then quarter and grill or broil, basting with oil so they don't dry out.... Ad serve with drawn butter, lemon slices, and we just did these a few weeks ago and I also made a roasted garlic aioli....YUM!

                      1. re: Gastronomos

                        love artichokes, esp with hollandaise, avgolemono or lemon mayo.

                        Realize the OP will be serving the asparagus with hollandaise at dinner, but Easter is one of those days when I wouldn't mind having hollandaise at brunch and dinner!

                          1. re: rainey

                            not the best photography, but artichokes in a light avgolemono sauce:

                            1. re: Gastronomos

                              Also love this classic Greek spring dish, artichokes with fava beans and dill:

                              Kalo Paska, Gastronomos!

                      2. Or can you get fresh peas yet? That might work. You can do a crostini with a pea purée & feta. Or fava beans, those work nicely with salty cheese also.

                        3 Replies
                        1. re: Dirtywextraolives

                          The problem with peas is they start going starchy as soon as you pick them.

                          We have peas growing in the garden and they're absolute green candy but there aren't more than a handful of pods on any given day and we're having 8-10 for Easter. Meanwhile, having fresh picked ones makes it awfully difficult to settle for starchy. =o

                          Great idea tho, if we could pull it off.

                          1. re: rainey

                            frozen peas? organic trader joe's are wonderful -- sweet and good texture!

                            1. re: alkapal

                              I always use frozen peas. They're the one thing I can think of that are consistently better than "fresh" when I can't pick my own. …and then it turns out to be a handful that I shell and eat raw in the garden. ; >