By Karin Calloway

Karin Calloway is a working mom living in Augusta, Ga., with multiple freelance jobs and a ton of dirty dishes.

Easter Brunch for Twelve

Easter is a sign that spring has arrived, and an Easter brunch is the perfect way to kick off the new season. This Easter Brunch for 12 is a real crowd pleaser and highlights the arrival of California asparagus and Florida strawberries, two of spring's finest offerings.

The menu starts with deviled eggs, but these aren't Grandma's eggs. Scented with a bit of curry powder, sweetened with chutney and made crunchy with the addition of crisp bacon, these deviled eggs are surprisingly complex in flavor.

A store-bought spiral sliced ham gets a honey-Dijon glaze, and then a coating of spiced sugar before heating in the oven. The supermarket ham tastes close to those sold at gourmet ham shops, but costs much less.

Since there are no pineapple rings on this ham, bread pudding-like Pineapple-Cheddar Strata is the perfect accompaniment. And, the season's asparagus shows up on this menu as crisp Honey-Citrus Marinated Asparagus that's garnished with slivered red onion and fresh orange segments.

Dessert is everyone's favorite strawberry shortcake, but this version is super simple to prepare and ever so delicious. Lemon mousse and lemon crème take these shortcakes over-the-top, and no one will guess that convenience products were used to create this divine dessert

Recipes:

Stracciatelli
Chicken soup is often referred to as "Jewish penicillin," but at my house the cure-all usually comes with an Italian accent. Stracciatelli (also known as rag soup) is a family favorite, and it’s a snap to prepare with store-bought reduced-sodium chicken broth.
Curried Deviled Easter Eggs
Deviled eggs are a perennial favorite at family gatherings, especially at Easter when hardboiled eggs abound. But unlike Grandma’s eggs, seasoned with yellow mustard and a bit of relish, these Curried Deviled Easter Eggs are packed with complex flavors.
Honey-Citrus Marinated Asparagus
Fresh, in-season asparagus is one of my favorite signs of spring. And, the season’s best asparagus is, to me, much tastier than the asparagus available in the off season.
Pineapple-Cheddar Strata
Some food combinations will always be favorites – steak and potatoes, marshmallows and chocolate and blue cheese and pears all come to mind. But one combination that’s a perennial favorite is ham and pineapple.
Simple Strawberry Shortcakes with Lemon Mousse and Lemon Creme
Each year the small Florida town of Plant City would host an early spring strawberry festival to welcome the new crop, and the highlight was strawberry shortcakes that seemed a mile high.