Christmas Brunch Recipes from Top Vancouver Chefs

December 22, 2011

Savoury Layered Crêpes

Celeste Mah is the pastry chef at Chambar but she's a wiz at brunch, too. She's responsible for all the fruit toppings and chocolate sauces on Café Medina's brunch menu, that are also available for purchase next door at The Dirty Apron. After a busy week at the restaurants, she plans to prepare layered crêpes on Christmas morning.

Whisk together 1 cup all-purpose flour, pinch of salt, ½ cup milk (plus more if needed), 2 eggs and 2 Tbsp melted butter. Better yet, throw it all in the blender and blend until smooth. If it's not quite pourable, add a little bit more milk. Let rest for at least 1 hour, but overnight is much better. This allows the gluten in the flour to relax and ensures the lightest and fluffiest texture.

The following morning, with Bailey's and coffee in hand, place a well seasoned 8- or 10-inch skillet on the stove and heat over medium heat for a couple of minutes. Add a pat of butter. Stir the batter with a large spoon; add a couple tablespoons of batter to the pan and swirl around to form a thin layer on the bottom of the pan.

When the top of the crepe is dry, turn it over. Imagine the crepe divided in four. In the top right corner place sliced ham or prosciutto and brie. In the top left corner crack an egg. Salt and pepper it. Once the egg is mostly cooked and the cheese mostly melted fold the bottom half of the crepe up over the top, and fold the right side over the left to form a triangle. Serve with fresh greens.

Egg Nog French Toast with Apple Jack Sauce

The word is out. We know Brad Miller, chef and owner of East Van's The Red Wagon, for casual and delicious diner food. And fter a recent appearance on Food Network's Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, everyone else in North America now knows about his killer pulled-pork pancakes, too. Grab your apron, a bottle of Jack Daniels, and follow his booze-laced directions for a manly French toast.

Dry out slices of brioche on the counter overnight, or in a low oven for 20 minutes. Dip (or soak) slices in egg nog enhanced with a splash of rum. Fry in pan with butter over medium high heat.

Roughly chop a few apples. Peel if you prefer. Saute pieces in browned butter, deglaze the pan with Jack Daniels, and add maple syrup. Heat slightly and serve. The ratio of fruit to JD to syrup depends on how colourful the conversation you're intending to have around the table. Top with candied roasted chestnuts or pecans and smoked aged cheddar.

Lobster Quiche

Chef Jefferson Alvarez, executive chef at Fraîche, grew up in Venezuela eating ham and olive rolls for breakfast. His savoury go-to brunch recipe is inspired by Vancouver's abundance of local ingredients. Dazzle your family on Christmas morning with his signature lobster quiche. (Hint: start the night before to ensure you pastry dough has ample time to rest.)

Pastry
225 grams bread flour
110 grams of butter
1 pinch of salt
65 ml water
1 egg yolk

Royale (custard base for quiche)
8 eggs
1 liter 35% cream
3 lemon zested
1 leek sliced on half, chopped and sautéed
8g chopped terragon
3g of chopped dill
1/2 cup of BC sweet corn
350g of lobster

Method

Combine the first four pastry ingredients together in the mixer or by hand in a bowl. Knead swiftly in to a dough. Wrap the dough in cling film and let it rest in the fridge overnight. Roll out the pastry to about 1/8" thick and line an 8" tart ring with the dough. Blind bake the shall at 360F for 30 mins. Remove from oven and brush the hot shell with egg yolk.

For the filing:
Mix the eggs and cream with the tarragon and dill, add salt to taste, and after the mix is well incorporated add the rest of the ingredients and pour it to the pastry shell. Cover with foil or parchment paper and bake at 350 F for approximately 35 minutes. The finished quiche should no longer jiggle in the middle.

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