When I was a kid I loved coloring Easter Eggs. I also loved the Easter Egg hunt to follow. My parents always assigned a monetary value to each egg, so I was highly motivated to find more eggs than my brother.
We always has a big Easter dinner with my grandparents, and dinner was synonymous with ham, potato salad, and of course, hard-boiled eggs.
Which got me thinking, is Easter ready for a Vegan Makeover? I put this question to test over the weekend by hosting a Vegan Easter Brunch, which included decorating eggs.
I enjoy entertaining. I have hosted more brunch and dinner parties than I can count. I’ve also successfully hosted many vegan parties for my carnivore friends, so I’m confident in my ability to please.
Insider tip: keep the bubbles pouring and your guests will eat anything.
If I was going to prove that Easter is ready for a vegan makeover, I would have to employee the hardest critics I knew…the neighborhood girls. Kids are surprisingly resistant to change. They know how things have been done, and therefore, should be done.
So I broke my challenge into 3 categories:
- The Menu
- The Eggs
- The China
1. The Menu
What was I going to feed my junior brunch guests? They weren’t going to embrace a mezze platter or vegan gazpacho soup. I had to tap into my inner kid…aha – tea sandwiches. Kids love finger food and tea sandwiches had all the sophistication of a traditional brunch.
Unfortunately, the tea-sandwich recipes I found were either very meat and/or cheese heavy, or filled with ingredients guaranteed to turn up the nose of any guest, i.e. pureed peas and carrots. YUCK!
I settled on a kid-classic – Peanut Butter & Jelly! Cheap, easy, and a fan-favorite. Since a couple of the mom’s were joining the fun, I also wanted to introduce something a little more mature.
Before I quit eating fish, I used to love tuna fish sandwiches. My vegan alternative is Smashed Chickpea Salad, which I make exactly the same way as I did Tuna Fish Salad.
Smash Chickpea Salad
Ingredients: 1 can chickpeas, Vegan mayo, dijon mustard, celery, salt and pepper.
Instructions: Drain and smash the chickpeas. Mix ingredients to the same liking as tuna fish or chicken salad.
Vegan Brunch Menu Continued
I kept the rest of the menu very simple with a combination of healthy and fun kid-approved sides: fruit, Ritz Crackers (already vegan), and Skittles (also Vegan).
The Fancy Drink
Brunch is not complete without a fancy drink. Since the moms and I were drinking mimosas, I wanted something special for the girls to sip on as well.
When I was little, my brother, cousin and I would spend a month or so in Wisconsin at my grandparent’s retirement home on the quiet Two Sister’s Lake, about 30 minutes from Rhinelander. Every evening after a long day of swimming, fishing, and exploring the woods, my grandma would make us kids a “Kiddie Cocktail” and encouraged us to go play cards for awhile.
This fond childhood memory for me, was really an ingenious ploy by my grandmother to get us kids out of her hair so her and my grandpa could enjoy a proper Gin and Tonic.
I have never forgotten how much we enjoyed the Kiddie Cocktails, and I shared them with the girls at brunch. The cocktails were just as much a hit with my junior brunch guests as they were by my brother, cousin and I.
The Kiddie Cocktail
Ingredients: 7-up or Sprite, splash of Orange Juice, Splash of Maraschino Cherry Juice, 1-2 Maraschino Cherries, ice
Instructions: Mix together and serve
With the menu decided, I moved on to challenge #2: The Eggs
Also see: Triple-Layer Vegan Easter Cake
2. The Eggs
Decorating eggs is a timeless Easter tradition and one that can’t easily be replaced with non-egg crafts. However, as a plant-based eater myself, and in the spirit of a Vegan brunch I needed to find an alternative. These did the trick!
These fake eggs are made of wood and very realistic. Best part, no boiling, no braking, no mess. For decorating, use any of the following materials:
3. The China
My wonderful neighbor has recently started collecting China. In fact, I’m pretty sure she has cleaned out the China from every thrift store in Arizona. Her collections are stunning. I was surprised when she offered a set for my Easter Brunch as it seemed a little risky with my junior guest list. But, I’m so thankful she did. Having the table set with China, especially secondhand China, made us all feel a little more fancy.
One final note regarding my outfit. My pink dress is new, to me. I acquired the dress at a clothing swap I hosted with my friends at AZ Sustainable Fashion. The three of us are global ambassadors for Remake – a non-profit organization committed to turning fashion into a force for good. I purchased my necklace secondhand at a resale store near me. I felt beautiful wearing these items, and more so, environmentally responsible.
In summary, the brunch was a success, and I’m confident nobody missed the animal meat or the real eggs. I say this, not because I delivered the most extravagant and tasty Vegan dishes, but because I created a brunch where for a few hours my guests enjoyed each other, the outdoors and a fun activity.
So, I guess I didn’t really give Easter a makeover after all since all the important elements were still there.