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an easter [or springtime brunch] recipe collection for Feast Eats.

springtime brunch recipe collection for Feast Eats.

photos from Feast Eats Instagram feed.

Dateline: March 22, 2016. I moved! Houses, that is; the blog is obviously in the same place it always was. This was a months-long process of falling in love (with this house), getting our house on the market, and then settling into this one. It’s perfect for us: I don’t have to use my kitchen table as my office anymore, and we actually have room for all the vintage cookware I’ve amassed over the years. There’s a formal living and dining room (if you’re keeping up, that’s two places to eat!) and at couldn’t be more in love with a house if I tried. It’s all I can do to keep from doing the Sound of Music Maria-in-the-mountains spin over and over again. 

This is a grand old dame of a house, let me tell you. And I’d probably feel like a fancy lady except that I’m sitting here in yogas and a tee, and this is my break  between mopping hardwood and doing laundry, because there is work to do before I really feel like it’s 100% mine. It’s getting there though: my heart was a total goner from the minute I set foot in this place during one fateful open house Sunday, and I kind of can’t believe it’s mine yet.

It’s beautiful here, with amazing mid-seventies bones (much like my own) and not a thread of carpet to be found, which is beyond wonderful for us. It’s spacious and classic, and there’s lots of fun projects awaiting us: not even close to a renovation, but I go after a particular neutral color scheme, and this house is the opposite of that currently. So expect this turn into a bit of a before/after house project blog for a bit, but this house (specifically the kitchen) makes me want to cook, so there will be food also.

As we were moving, I finished two recipe collections: one will be out in the April issue of Feast’s print (and online edition), but the one I’m talking about today is on Feast’s new offshoot website, Feast Eats. I’m gonna PSA here for a second: I haven’t talked nearly enough about Feast Eats yet, but it acts as an online companion of sorts to the national syndicated section they (we?) launched in September 2015. It’s first-run, original content, recipe and photo driven, and those recipe collections are basically me. Remember my nerdy videos? Those are over there too. So if you like my stuff, go follow Feast Eats on Twitter and Instagram: liking them is like liking me, only they’re way better at keeping up, so chances are you’ll here about the recipes sooner there (although I’m trying SO HARD to get better with that). The photos are always gorgeous, and we have such a fun time at the shoots, that the whole thing is truly a labor of love, and I hope you love it as well.

Now: time to brunch! So this collection is tailor-made for springtime, and if you don’t have set-in-stone plans for your Easter feast yet, allow me to humbly suggest some – if not all? – of these recipes for you. They’re low-maintenance, most of it can be made the day or two before, which means all you’ll have to do is throw some stuff in the oven that morning and you’re set for the day. Would I ever steer you wrong? I wouldn’t: certainly not with brunch, because I’m the last person who wants to fool around with a bunch of fussy things when people are arriving before noon. Brunch should be relaxing, not stressful, and it’s spring: you’re going to want to be outside hunting eggs, not agonizing over whether things will turn out. Here’s what I made for you (and click over to see the photos, too, because they are incredible, and the work of Jonathan Gayman):

Salted Radishes with Herbed Anchovy Butter – divine.

Shirred Eggs with Asparagus and English Cheddar – seriously the cutest eggs ever, and a great way to make eggs for a crowd without doing a quiche or frittata.

Caper-Dill Mini Scones with Smoked Salmon and Whipped Goat Cheese – do I need to talk about these? nope. I’d eat these ever day, and the recipe is about half-size (because they’re mini and sliced in half) so you won’t end up with stale scones the next day.

Pea Shoot, Feta and Toasted Almond Spring Salad with Lemon-Rhubarb Vinaigrette – I feel like rhubarb in anything right now gets me extra food pro points. Have you seen the rhubarb out there? RUBIES.

Cardamom-Chamomile Glazed Carrots – tea is such a thing now, and chamomile adds a really interesting flavor component to an otherwise straightforward glaze.

Herbed Wild Rice with Pine Nuts – bread stuffing in the spring seems heavy to me: wild rice stuffing with herbs and pine nuts, though? Perfection, especially when it’s piled inside a…

Crown of Lamb with Arugula Pesto – this sounds scary, but it’s so not. If i can do it? you can do it, and I’m not just saying that. By the way, when you’re done, you have a crown of meat that you get to serve to your very-impressed guests. With a spring pesto, in case it wasn’t delicious enough.

Pavlova Bar – basically you pick from a pile of little clouds, add whipped  cream and fruit to it, and eat all of it. And you won’t feel bad about it because it’s honestly like eating a cloud. You all know how I love a dessert bar, and it’s just really practical for a brunch versus you fussing about with dessert.

Honestly, this one was a walk in the park compared to some of the other collections I’ve done, because spring is just the best for vibrant color and flavor. It’s not my favorite season (Autumn takes that particular cake), but for food, spring is a much-needed break from the heft and heaviness of winter food.

So head over to Feast Eats because hey, it’s fun over there, and it’s me over there doing what evidently I love to do, which is craft recipes and occasionally get to hang out with a talented and amazing group of people from time to time. This go-round (as I mentioned above) the photos were taken by Jonathan Gayman, and they really are stunning: maybe my favorite photo shoot yet.

PS: I’ve been a punk lately (ermm…for months now) about blog reading, and i have a news feed a mile long. I refuse to delete them because FOMO, which means I’ll be catching up with all of you hopefully over the course of this week, now that my crazy house move has come to a close. If you see a comment on a post from maybe November? Hi, just me.

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  • Reply elizabeth March 22, 2016 at 11:22 am

    I love this spread! It feels so festive and spring-ish and if we had any say over the holiday meal I’d try to incorporate a dish or two. (I might share that carrot dish with my husband because if he’s into it, he’ll figure out how to make it work at his parents’ house.) I can’t wait to hear more about the new place, and I definitely am sending you an email because it’s been way too long.

    • Reply shannon March 30, 2016 at 4:13 pm

      I’m so happy you like it! 🙂 this one seriously was my easiest feature: something about spring – especially just after winter is ending and buds are peeking out and all that fresh veg is on the stands – makes this kind of thing just flow super naturally. Maybe taper down some of the recipes and just make you and M a brunch some morning?

      I saw your email, and you’ll be hearing from me when i get a chance to sit down and devote my full attention, because you deserve that. which is the long way of saying “tomorrow when i have a shot at actual catching up.” I miss you!

  • Reply Faygie Moorvitch March 22, 2016 at 2:44 pm

    I can’t wait to see more of your new house! I love home design, so I’m looking forward to see some before and afters!

    • Reply shannon March 30, 2016 at 4:10 pm

      I know you do, Faygie! I’m taking before/afters just for you…it maybe “before/durings” because we still have to figure out some of the furniture, art, etc but it’s getting there, and we’ll get to “after” soon enough.

  • Reply Jen March 22, 2016 at 4:26 pm

    I’m swooning over the mini scones. Also, I can’t wait to see your new abode. But more importantly, I’m so glad you’re somewhere you love. <3

    • Reply shannon March 30, 2016 at 4:09 pm

      i would make you ALL the mini-scones, Jen. 🙂 I can’t wait to show you! I’m thrilled to be getting settled and turning this home into MY home, which is fun. Photos very soon.

  • Reply John/Kitchen Riffs March 22, 2016 at 8:55 pm

    Congrats! We need to see pictures of your formal eating spaces. 🙂 And your kitchen, of course.

    • Reply shannon March 30, 2016 at 4:08 pm

      Is it truly “formal” if i don’t have dining room chairs yet? 😉 Definitely there will be photos, seating or no seating, same with the kitchen, which is now snow white, the way nature intended. 🙂

  • Reply Brianne March 23, 2016 at 2:57 pm

    I’m glad you’re all moved in! When we moved to our little house, it was an unexpected move and took some time to settle in. But now we’re here and we love it! I can’t wait to see your projects…I love that kind of thing. And I am all about that pavlova bar. I’m definitely using that for a summer party!

    • Reply shannon March 30, 2016 at 4:07 pm

      Thanks Brianne! Me TOO: moving is HARD, and i can’t imagine how much more difficult it would be if it were unexpected! ugh. I agree that no matter what happens during the move, the settling in bit is the best feeling EVER: just knowing it’s over is bliss.

      I can’t wait to DO my projects! I’ve already started painting, and I’m hoping to get more done this week: pictures soon! Probably the updates will be an “almost there” while i do pesky adult things like buying dining chairs for the dining room table, etc. 🙂

      Oh i super hope you make the pavlova bar – it’s so dang easy, and perfect for summer. the girls at the shoot loved them.

  • Reply Ashley March 24, 2016 at 9:15 am

    Simply stunning!!! Your feast is precisely, perfectly Spring, capital S and all. I’m dying to try the chamomile (and cardamom, one of my favorite “secret” spices) carrots. Your creativity and productivity are inspiring, as always.

    • Reply shannon April 7, 2016 at 11:01 am

      Thanks Ashley! I was going for a very “this doesn’t have to be Easter, this can be anytime” sort of casualness, and I hope i achieved that. I hate for recipes to be a one time only situation, you know? I agree about cardamom: definitely a good secret add (people never really can put their finger on what it is) and the chamomile is much the same.

  • Reply movita beaucoup March 27, 2016 at 6:35 am

    Feasts and the promise of house updates? IT DOESN’T GET BETTER THAN THIS!

    • Reply shannon March 30, 2016 at 4:03 pm

      But it’s really the following through with house updates that should keep you guessing. I have done some painting…

  • Reply Emma March 31, 2016 at 8:35 am

    yay moving! can’t wait to see what dream up, all color neutral and glorious! 🙂 xo

    • Reply shannon April 7, 2016 at 11:02 am

      Neutral = a house win, for sure. xox right back at you, Emma.

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