Brunch Ideas by Curtis Stone

Delicious and simple brunch and breakfast ideas that celebrate spring produce at its peak.

Easy Asparagus Omelet (Photo by Ray Kachatorian)

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Savoring the seasons is a philosophy I embrace both at my restaurants and in my home kitchen. Spring is time to trade in those hearty winter comfort foods for lighter fare that showcases the season’s best produce. I try to get to the farmer’s market at least once a week, and I look forward to the thin spears of asparagus and tiniest, sweetest strawberries. When you have the freshest seasonal fruits and vegetables, there’s no need to overcomplicate a recipe with too many ingredients.

Incredibly versatile, asparagus can be boiled, steamed, roasted, battered, grilled, or sautéed and can be served as a starter, main course, or side dish. At the market, look for spears about the same size in diameter for even cooking. The skins should be smooth, and the tips tightly closed.

Easy Asparagus Omelet does not require much preparation. In the time it takes for water to boil, you can cut the asparagus, crack a few eggs, and melt the butter. Let the eggs set and add the asparagus. Another minute or so under the broiler and brunch is served. I recommend a Gouda cheese for this recipe, but you can use a fontina, Taleggio, or Brie.

One of my favorites, Strawberry Rippled Ice Cream can be made two days in advance, so it’s one less thing to do the day of your brunch. The only problem I can see with this recipe is keeping your hands off it for that long!

Easy Asparagus Omelet

(Makes 4 servings)

15    thin asparagus spears, tough ends trimmed
1/2   teaspoon olive oil
12    large eggs
Pinch of salt
1/2   teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1      tablespoon unsalted butter
2      ounces Gouda cheese, shaved into thin slices

Preheat broiler. Cut asparagus tips into 3-inch lengths then cut remaining asparagus stalks on slight diagonal into ¼-inch-thick slices. In small bowl, toss asparagus tips with oil to coat. In large bowl, whisk eggs, salt, and pepper to blend well.

In 12-inch-diameter nonstick oven-proof sauté pan over medium heat, melt butter, swirling pan to coat it. Add asparagus slices and sauté 1 minute. Add eggs and gently stir with silicone spatula to lift cooked egg off bottom of skillet and stir it into uncooked portion (be careful not to overstir omelet). As omelet begins to set, have one last gentle stir and then lay cheese slices and asparagus tips over omelet.

Place pan under broiler and cook for about 1 minute, or until omelet is set on top and cheese melts. Using silicone spatula, loosen omelet from pan and slide it onto platter. Cut omelet into wedges and serve.

Per serving: Calories: 286 Total Fat: 19 g; Saturated Fat: 7 g; Sodium: 387 mg
Carbohydrate: 5 g; Fiber: 2 g; Protein:  24 g;
Diabetic Exchanges: 3 lean meat, 0.5 vegetable, 2.5 fat

Strawberry rippled ice cream with candied almonds (Photo by Frank Lee)

Strawberry Rippled Ice Cream with Candied Almonds

(Makes 8 servings)

1 1/4    pounds fresh ripe strawberries, thinly sliced, divided
2/3       cup sugar, divided
1          tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1 1/2    quarts vanilla ice cream
1/2       cup sliced almonds, toasted

In large skillet over medium heat, bring 12 ounces strawberries, 1/3 cup sugar, and lemon juice to a simmer, stirring frequently, for about 8 minutes, or until it thickens. Transfer mixture to shallow container and refrigerate until cold.

Spoon one-third of ice cream into loaf pan, forming layer to nearly cover bottom of pan (layer does not have to be perfect). Dollop half of cold strawberry mixture over. Top with another layer of ice cream. Repeat layering. Freeze for about 1 hour, or until firm.

Meanwhile, in large heavy saucepan over medium-high heat, cook 1/3 cup sugar without stirring for about 5 minutes, or until sugar has melted and turned deep golden brown. Swirl pan occasionally to cook sugar evenly. Stir in almonds and a pinch of salt to coat. Pour almond mixture, in single layer, onto sheet pan. Once cool, break up into small clusters and reserve in airtight container.

Scoop ice cream into chilled bowls and top with remaining sliced strawberries and candied almonds.

Make-Ahead: Strawberry ripple ice cream can be made up to two days ahead, covered, and frozen. Candied almonds can be made up to one week ahead, stored in an airtight container at room temperature.

Per serving: Calories: 139; Total Fat: 4 g; Saturated Fat: 1 g;
Sodium: 8 mg; Carbohydrate: 26 g; Fiber: 2 g; Protein: 2 g;
Diabetic Exchanges: 1.25 “other”  carbohydrates, 0.5 fruit, 1 fat

Find even more recipes that celebrate fresh spring produce at

Recipes © Curtis Stone

This article appears in the March/April 2023 issue of The Saturday Evening Post. Subscribe to the magazine for more art, inspiring stories, fiction, humor, and features from our archives.

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