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Brunch: The new at-home happening

Published April 06. 2011 05:00PM

With the change of seasons, it's fun to wake up the taste buds and celebrate the bright flavors and colors of spring.

A simple, casual, colorful and flavorful brunch is the ultimate gathering and a fresh new way to bring together friends and family.

"An at-home brunch is the perfect opportunity to express the flavors of the season with herbs and spices sweet and warm cinnamon, lively ginger, savory thyme and unmistakable vanilla all contribute to a special occasion your guests will enjoy," said Mary Beth Harrington of the McCormick Kitchens.

Providing an array of sweet and savory brunch dishes is a fun and easy way to host brunch for a hungry crowd.

Guests can start with Stuffed French Toast, complete with a decadent filling of cinnamon-spiced cream cheese and apricot preserves.

To balance the traditional breakfast tastes with lunchtime inspiration, Roast Pork Tenderloin with a Ginger Peach Glaze is a delicate blend of sweet and slightly spicy flavors.

For a charming dessert, colorfully glazed Spiced Springtime Sugar Cookies are a kid-friendly baking activity and the perfect, edible table decoration.

McCormick offers the following at-home brunch tips:

• Bring on the buffet - Keep things fun without the fuss by serving a brunch buffet so that guests can have a taste of everything. Make a dramatic presentation by serving the dishes on colorful plates while showcasing what's special about each.

For example, garnish the dishes with herbs and spices to bring the flavors to the forefront and set out hand-written note cards with the name of each.

• Make prep a spring breeze - The trick is to make your brunch seem as effortless as possible, which can be easier than you think with the right recipes.

Dishes like Cheesy Bacon & Egg Brunch Casserole allow you to prepare everything in advance, while the Very Vanilla Fruit Salad can be made while catching up with guests.

• Be your own flavor-ista - Celebrate by creating an at-home coffee bar where guests can customize their drinks by adding their own toppings, like cinnamon, vanilla and nutmeg.

For a splash of spring color, make your own homemade colored sugar to add a little sparkle to any delicious dessert.

B.Y.O. brunch - Host a potluck brunch so that everyone can try something new. Consider asking guests to sign up for certain recipes beforehand to ensure there are both timeless favorites, as well as new and inspiring ideas.

And don't forget to have everyone bring a copy of their crowd-pleasing recipe to share!

• At the kid's table - Welcome kids to the celebration with the chance to decorate their own cute-as-can-be Bunny Cupcakes or Spiced Springtime Sugar Cookies. Prepare a decorating station with cupcakes and fun toppings like coconut, marshmallows, jelly beans, sprinkles and chocolate chips.

And, most importantly, say hello to spring with pink, green and blue frosting using McCormick Food Colors.

For more recipes, party essentials, colorful tips and technique videos for your get-togethers, visit

Let's brunch!

Roast Pork Tenderloin with Ginger Peach Glaze

Prep time: 5 minutes

Cook time: 45 minutes

1 1/2 teaspoons seasoned salt

1 teaspoon McCormick Ground Thyme®

2 pork tenderloins (about 1 pound each)

1 cup peach or apricot preserves

1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce

1 teaspoons McCormick® Ground Ginger

1. Mix seasoned salt and thyme in small bowl. Rub evenly over pork. Place on rack in foil-lined roasting pan.

2. Roast in preheated 375°F oven 40 to 45 minutes or until desired doneness.

3. Mix preserves, Worchestershire sauce and ginger in small bowl. Spoon over pork during the last 10 minutes of cooking. Slice pork and serve with pan juices.

Makes 8 servings.

Nutritional Information per Serving: 236 Calories, Fat 4g, Protein 23g, Carbohydrates 27g, Cholesterol 65 mg, Sodium 358mg, Fiber 0g.

With an extensive network of researchers, trend experts, chefs, home economists, food technologists, and sensory analysts, McCormick & Company, Inc. keeps its finger on the pulse of flavor. McCormick was founded in 1889 in Baltimore, Md.

Visit for more information.

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