Food & Recipes, Friendships, Home Entertaining
Brunch Should Be Easy – So You Can Spend It With Your Friends
It’s so wonderful to be able to get together with friends again. Even though I’m almost always in the mood to entertain, hosting a weekend brunch may be one of my favorite ways to gather with friends and family. There’s a certain casual comfort to brunch that makes it easy to pull together and even easier to enjoy.
Brunch is meant to be a breezy affair. That’s why I’m always looking for recipes that I can feed a group with and that come together quickly and easily. The host shouldn’t have to stand over a stove. In fact, if you’re standing over a stove, you’re not really hosting. Great brunch recipes allow you to get the meal started and then enjoy a mimosa (yes, please!) before it’s time to serve your guests.
What I love about this recipe for Hash Brown Cups is that it’s a perfect combination of potato, cheese, and eggs, and it’s basic enough that you can get as creative as you like with it. I added bacon to this version, but you could just as easily use diced ham, sautéed mushrooms, or whatever else you fancy.
I love my potatoes VERY crispy, so I added an extra five minutes of cooking time after pushing the potatoes back into the cups following the first bake. If you prefer your potatoes to be less crispy, simply shorten the cooking time.
You could add scallions, use different cheeses, or add your favorite herbs or other ingredients like I did with the bacon. Cooking is fun! Get creative!
Serve this alongside sliced fresh fruit or a simple salad. If tomatoes are in season, slice them and sprinkle them with a little sea salt. You can also grab some fresh baked bread or pastries from your local bakery to set out. With minimal effort, you’ll have an easy, delicious brunch that begs you and your guests to linger over coffee and cocktails while you catch up on all that you missed.
Customizable Brunch Hash Brown Cups with Eggs
- 20 oz of thawed hash brown potatoes
- 5 Tbs melted unsalted butter
- 2/3 C shredded cheddar cheese
- 12 Large Eggs
- Any custom mix-ins, about a ¼ cup or less
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease the muffin pan. In a large bowl, stir together the potatoes, butter, cheese, and your custom mix-ins (I added chopped crisp bacon). Divide the mixture between the 12 muffin cups and press into the bottom and up the sides of the cups. Bake for 25 minutes to crisp the potatoes. The potatoes will shrink a little. Use the back of a spoon (I used the back of an ice cream scoop!) to press the mixture back against the bottom and sides of the cups. (I put it back into the oven for another 5 minutes to crisp up a bit more). Crack an egg into a small bowl and then gently pour it into each potato cup. Return to the oven for an additional 14 minutes for a jammy egg. You can do a minute or two less for a runny egg, but be sure that the whites are completely set before removing it from the oven. If you like your eggs cooked more, you can leave them in the oven for another 2-3 minutes.
Remove from the oven and let rest for 10 minutes. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Slide a knife or offset spatula around each cup and place on a plate. Add chopped fresh herbs to garnish. And now you have brunch!