Kitchen Shrink: Personalize your Mother’s Day Brunch to suit your spirit

catherine-kaufmanBy Catharine L. Kaufman

“A mother is a person who, seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie.”

— Tenneva Jordan

Mothers throughout centuries have been treasured, honored and, yes, roasted. Mother’s Day celebrations hark back to the ancient Greeks who held spring festivals to worship Rhea, Mother of the Gods. This Sunday, May 13, treat your mama like a goddess with a customized breakfast in bed. I’ve created menu options tailor-made to suit most moms’ gustatory idiosyncrasies, and added a turnkey kid-and-dad recipe to keep mom out of the kitchen on her special day.

Farm-to-Table Mabel

If mom’s an organic fanatic, visit a farmers market or fresh fruit stand and prepare a frittata with organic eggs, goat cheese and veggies of her choice — fresh spinach, asparagus, roasted peppers, wild mushrooms.

Top it off with banana-walnut muffins, or high-fiber, whole grain breads, an assortment of berries drizzled with a honey yoghurt dressing, and wash it down nicely with a mango-tango smoothie, glass of crisp pomegranate juice or cup of green tea with coconut milk.

New York State of Mom

For East Coast transplants, you can do a traditional bountiful display of assorted smoked fish, fruit or cheese blintzes or Danish, and, of course, bagels and lox with a variety of “shmears.” For something fun and easy the kids can whip up a breakfast pizza topped with cream cheese, strips of smoked salmon, thinly sliced red onion, heirloom tomatoes and capers. Serve with a pot of “hawt cawfee.”


Even if mom doesn’t do brekkie, whip up something light and lively. Try a flakey almond or chocolate croissant — slice of Persian, Casaba or other exotic, seasonal melon — and a cup of breakfast tea with honey and lemon.

Carb Queen

These moms really enjoy a hearty breakfast, throwing caution and calories to the wind. There are more amalgams of French toast combinations than the Super Lotto – stuffed with mascarpone cheese, almond butter and jelly, chocolate hazelnut spread or bananas and cream cheese. Or try crème brulé French toast, dipped in a toasted coconut almond crust or smothered in drunken berries with liqueur of your choice.

Do eggs any style with a side of rosemary fingerling potatoes, hash browns a–go-go, sweet potato fries or potato latkes (pancakes) with fresh, chunky applesauce. Pancakes can be flavored ala blueberries, banana nut, Granny Smith apples with cinnamon, or dark chocolate.

Gluten-Free Gal

If mom suffers from gluten gut, a sensitivity or intolerance to the sticky protein found in wheat, rye, barley and “contaminated” oats, there are a slew of other foods that are naturally gluten-free. Try potatoes, soy, eggs, cheese, corn and wonderful alternative grains including quinoa, buckwheat, sorghum and amaranth, along with choice proteins. And the best news — mimosas are gluten-free!

Neat Freak Franny

Now dads, if she doesn’t want anybody tinkering in her domain, then the only thing you should be making is reservations. Mother’s Day brunches abound throughout our fair city. If you want a spectacular ocean setting, fresh seafood, gourmet food stations, divine desserts and bottomless mimosas, then go see the Pink Lady (La Valencia Hotel). Celebrated chef Brian Malarkey’s fabric hot spots including Point Loma’s Gabardine will be featuring a mimosa bar, and Del Mar’s Burlap will be shaking things up with some kitschy Mom’s Day cocktails blending house infused lavender vodka, fresh lemon bitters, soda and rose hip perfume. For a fresh California fusion, try George’s California modern, a special menu offering such goodies as Brioche French Toast with Chino Farms strawberries, and Eggs Benedict with fresh Dungeness crab. And for die-hard carnivorous moms, Donovan’s Steakhouse in La Jolla.

For more recipes, e-mail or check out

kitchenshrink.mimosaPomegranate Mimosa Cocktail

Here’s my Mom’s Day contribution — a healthful, antioxidant (and gluten-free) twist on the traditional mimosa. Serves 1.

Bottoms up!


Chilled Champagne or sparkling wine

Freshly squeezed blood orange juice

Pomegranate juice

Directions: Fill 1/3 of a chilled Champagne flute with the orange juice. Add a few splashes of pomegranate juice then top off with bubbly. Cheers! Salud! Proost! Le Chaim!