Let's Do Brunch!

tart_above It's New Year's Eve, y'all! Wowza. As I type this, I have a huge, almost 10-month-old baby in my lap and a 5-year-old in the living room, who is on (a rather unnecessarily long, really) winter break from Big Kid School. Unreal! 2013, you were a crazy one. I'm not even going to get into the ups and downs and utter confusion that marked this year for me--does the internet really need more year-end oversharing? So I'll just say that like a lot of you, I'm looking forward to a new year, new projects, and an all-around new attitude. Not to mention more full nights of sleep, which I finally started getting around here during the past week. (Hey, it only took 10 months! Blergh.)

I hope everyone has lovely plan to ring in 2014, whether that means some fancy gala that calls for hair and makeup and something sparkly to wear (Ooh! Tell me, what is that like?) or if you're doing something more our speed, which is to say a celebration involving comfy pants, (spiked) hot chocolate, popcorn, and the East Coast feed of the ball drop because seriously, I can't do midnight anymore. Whatever you do, I hope it's full of fun and love and hope and promise. Really, truly. We all deserve a great 2014. Can you hear me, universe?!

But first, priorities. Brunch planning! New Year's Brunch, to be specific. Let's do this year up right by starting with some epic eats. And I don't mean a whole homemade spread, although if you're doing that, I'd love to come over. For me, it's about one great dish or a special side thing to make the first day of the year a little extra special. Bonus points if said thing has make-ahead elements to gently massage you into the morning. No need to be bursting out of a cannon on Day One and making the rest of us look bad. Let's save that action for some especially warm, sunny day in early June.

First up? Bacon and Caramelized Onion Tart. (See top photo) Because if you're going to have bacon and eggs, why not repackage the whole thing and blow minds?


Pumpkin, Chocolate Chip, and Pistachio Crumb Muffins. Seriously, one of my favorite new recipes of 2013. A total keeper.


Blueberry-Maple Breakfast Bread Pudding. The magic comes from barely needing to open your eyes in the morning to have a hot breakfast. This make-ahead wonder is a staple in our house all year-round. Awesome.


Fresh Corn and Thyme Souffle. I could eat this everyday for the rest of my life and I'm not even making that up.


Savory Quickbread with Green Garlic and Two Cheeses. You won't find green garlic in the markets at this time of year, but you will find shallots or chives or scallions, any of which work beautifully here, and besides, you won't be thinking about seasonality when you're putting this whole thing in your face at lighting speed.


Orange-Scented Cinnamon Rolls. One last hurrah before we pretend we're going to eat kale all day starting January 2nd.


Homemade Coffee Creamer. Just in case you want something for the table that screams, "2014 SHALL BE THE YEAR OF THE DOMESTIC GODDESS!!

Happy New Year, dear readers!