Easter Brunch Starters

One of my favorite pleasures in life is gathering with the family to celebrate the holidays. Getting everyone around the table and enjoying a beautiful, delicious meal is pure heaven to me :) Growing up in Indiana, Easter was always a welcome celebration after the quiet, reflective period of Lent and the grey of winter.  Following Easter mass, we would gather with all our cousins and attend a big Easter brunch hosted my grandmother. Excited to be wearing a new spring outfit, eating jelly beans and running around with the cousins, it was truly the highlight of the season.

My grandmother has since passed and now it is our turn to carry on the tradition. To start any celebration, I like to begin with a special drink. Grapefruit Prosecco Sparkler is refreshing and colorful plus it has some health benefits. Grapefruit is known to

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Serve this refreshing drink with or without alcohol

  • Boost your metabolism
  • Lower LDL and Cholesterol
  • Keep your complexion plump and smooth

So bring on the sparkler!

Grapefruit  Prosecco Sparkler
Pink and refreshing!

Serves 10

Ingredients

  • 3 cups pink grapefruit juice, chilled
  • 1 cup elderflower liqueur (St. Germain)
  • 1 750-milliliter bottle of Prosecco chilled
  • 1/2 pink grapefruit, sliced thin
  • 1/4 cup fresh mint

Directions
In a punch bowl, combine grapefruit juice, elderflower liqueur; chill. Just before serving, add Prosecco, grapefruit slices and mint.

Denise’s Tips
For a non-alcoholic version, replace St. Germain with Elderflower soda (or ginger ale) and Prosecco with sparkling water.

Nothing says spring like asparagus, so I will be pairing these simple yet elegant Asparagus Rollups with the Grapefruit Prosecco Sparkler.

Asparagus Rollups
This makes a lovely appetizer for a spring brunch. I have made a gluten- and dairy-free version of the original, with a few Fit Foodie tweaks.

Ingredients

  • 14 thin slices of bread — try Sara Lee Soft and Smooth Whole Grain White or Udi’s Gluten-free White Sandwich Bread
  • 8 slices of uncured bacon, cooked crisp, drained and crumbled
  • 8 oz of low-fat or Greek-style Cream Cheese or for non-dairy, use Tofutti non-dairy spread at room temperature
  • Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
  • 28 asparagus spears, cooked crisp tender
  • 1/4 cup melted Earth Balance non-dairy butter

Directions

  1. Trim the crust from the bread. Flatten the slices with a rolling pin. Combine the bacon, cream cheese and lemon zest. Spread a even layer of the cream cheese mixture on each flattened bread slice.
  2. Place 2 asparagus spears, with the tips facing in opposite directions, on one edge of each bread slice. Roll up each slice like a jelly roll. Cut each roll in half and place seam side down on a lightly greased cookie sheet. *you can store roll-ups covered in the refrigerator ahead of time*
  3. Preheat broiler. Brush tops and sides with melted butter. Broil six inches from the heat until lightly browned and toasted. Serve immediately

Download recipes now!

Spring brings with it so many celebrations – from Passover and Easter at the beginning to Memorial Day at the end. It’s a time of year when we are eager for new colors and fresh flavors. I hope that you enjoy these delicious starters as you celebrate spring!

– Denise 

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