Brunch is back

Treat your Mom to a special Mother’s Day brunch next Sunday.

Brunches are said to have originated in England sometime during the late 19th century, but became popular in the United States in the 1930s.

Our mild autumn climate in South Africa makes it easy to gather family and friends outside for the better part of a sunny day. which is why brunches are a great way to entertain at home at this time of year.  

On the menu

Choose a few or go all out and make them all!

  • Fruit salad or skewers, yoghurt and muesli
  • Frittata or a quiche
  • Waffles and French toast with all the toppings are perfect for younger guests
  • A classic hot smoked salmon kedgeree (see recipe below)
  • Good coffee
  • Mimosas and fresh juices  

Cheat’s tips

  • Serve a selection of croissants from your favourite bakery with marmalades and jams. Or simply fill plain croissants with a chocolate spread.
  • Top ready-made potato rosti (you can buy them from the freezer section in most supermarkets) with cream cheese and smoked salmon, season with a grinding of black pepper and garnish with micro herbs or fresh rocket.
  • Pile doughnuts onto a platter and decorate with roses.  

Did you know?

Brunch parties and weddings are bang on trend in 2021 as they can be held outdoors to keep guests socially distanced, allow endless food and cocktail options plus they’re usually more affordable as people tend to drink less than they would at an evening celebration. TIP: If you’re hosting your function outdoors, make sure you have a plan B if the weather isn’t playing ball.

Brilliant brunch ideas for bigger parties

  • Serve cocktails like Bellinis, Bloody Mary’s, Screwdrivers, sparkling wine and orange juice.
  • Offer buckets of bottled water. * Keep Covid safe and serve plated food instead of offering a buffet to harvest table. Wow guests with a cake made of pancakes, waffles or doughnuts.
  • A coffee bar is always a win.
  • Creative food stations, like omelette and cereal bars, are also fun if Covid protocol allows.
  • A jazz band playing in the background is a great alternative to dancing and works so well at brunch weddings.
  • Keep decor simple: In spring, mix white with greenery or sorbet colours and go for earthy tones of beige and dried foliage in the colder months.
  • A lovely idea is to offer a few hats for guests sitting in the sun and blankets or shawls if it’s cold. You can pick them up at bargain prices from markets, Chinese malls and plazas.  

Hot Smoked salmon and egg Kedgeree

According to Larousse Gastronomique, Kedgeree is an English dish that originated in India and was known as Kadgeri. It consisted of rice garnished with onions, lentils and eggs. Fish was added by the English.

The beauty of this retro-style dish is that it can be cooked in advance and reheated when needed. It’s also delicious with smoked haddock, kippers or even peeled prawns.

Serves 4

You’ll need:

  • 50g butter
  • 1 medium onion, finely chopped
  • 4 cardamom pods
  • 1/4 teaspoon turmeric
  • small cinnamon stick
  • 350g basmati rice
  • 60ml chicken stock
  • 2 bay leaves
  • pinch of salt
  • 4 eggs
  • 350g hot smoked salmon, flaked
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • fresh parsley, chopped
  • salt and freshly ground black pepper  
  1. Melt half the butter in a heavy-based pan, add the onion and cook gently for 5 minutes until soft but not browned. Add the cardamom, turmeric and cinnamon stick and cook for 1 minute.
  2. Add the rice to the buttery onions and stir well. Add the stock, bay leaves and salt. Bring to the boil, cover with a well-fitting lid and leave to cook very gently over low heat for about 12 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, hard boil the eggs for 8 minutes, drain, peel and cut into pieces.
  4. Uncover the rice and remove the bay leaves and cinnamon stick. Gently fork in the hot smoked salmon and eggs, re-cover and cook for a further 3 – 4 minutes until they have heated through. Melt the remaining butter. Uncover the rice once more and fork through the lemon juice, parsley, melted butter, salt and pepper to taste.

* Recipe by Ainsley Harriott  

If you’re outdoors

If it’s hot, avoid dishes made with mayonnaise and leafy salads that wilt in the heat.

Don’t leave cheeseboard and desserts outside; keep them indoors until ready to serve.

Be careful of seafood; keep it in the fridge or on ice until ready. Wedding or birthday cakes must be kept in a temperature controlled area until ready to be cut.


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