Muffin pan poached eggs are the perfect topping to add to your avocado toast bar. Mom would be so proud - poached eggs!
As Mother's Day approaches, my focus is not on what I hope to receive from my four children, but on what might make my mother feel loved and cherished. I know that she wants nothing more than for her five kids to come together and share a meal with her, and this is how we often find ourselves celebrating with food at my parents' home each Mother's Day Sunday.
While my parents' home is a great meeting place for all of us kids, most of my siblings just starting to build their own families and not possessing the space necessary to host the 18 members of our growing group, it also puts pressure on my mom to be the one doing the cooking. Considering the reason I cooked our meals was that she doesn't particularly enjoy it, it's a rather double-edged sword to assume she wants to slave in the kitchen over pans of casserole and bake up loafs of quick breads just to get us to gather in her home. Enter the avocado toast bar.
While a toast bar may not sound like much, the reality is that it is everything. Ripe avocadoes smashed over warm toast and topped however you like them. It's hearty and filling, and there's a little something for everyone, the toppings and bread choices switching up to match the audience. You can even assign a few toppings each to the guest list without asking anyone for a huge contribution or time commitment. Plus, it's a great way to switch up your regular brunch fare and give mom a break for Mother's Day.
Dreamfarm tools make the prep work for the avocado toast bar quick and easy. The avocadoes get smashed right in the serving bowl with a Smood, one half at a time, with a handy scrapper edge to help gather it all together. The Smood also makes it easy to add to the bowl when the avocado is running low. The Garject adds garlic without adding the scent and flavor to your fingers. Chobs doubles the use of your cutting board without the need for more counter space or multiple cutting boards. Use one side for meat and the other for produce. The Oni knife is a great tool to have on hand for guests to slice avocado halves, chop pieces of bacon to fit their needs, and spread avocado filling or soft cheeses on their toast. And finally, if you end up with any avocado halves, the Savel will help save the leftover one by protecting it from oxidizing in the air.
About the bread:
Avocado toast is best served on a bread worth talking about. I headed over to a neighborhood bakery and picked up a loaf of pain au levain (sourdough for the lay people) and another whole grain bit. I made sure to pick a bakery that would slice them into nice, even slices for me. Any good artisan loaf will suffice, something that can hold up to a lot of toppings, though. No extra soft white bread with the colorful polka dots across the bag. You know which one I'm talking about.
About the Toppings:
There is no limit to the number or type of toppings when preparing an avocado toast bar, but you want to hit at least slightly on a few key areas: sweet, salty, umami, bitter, and sour. These all create great additional flavor boosts against the rich avocado and the bread. A variety of textures is also nice, providing contrast.
Here are a few ideas to get you started:
- poached eggs
- hard-boiled eggs
- sautéed mushrooms
- lime and lemon wedges
- minced herbs
- red pepper flakes
- sun-dried tomatoes
- artichoke hearts
- seeds and nuts
- lettuces and micro greens
- cheeses: parmesan, gorgonzola, goat cheese, etc.
- onions: sliced red onion, shallots, green onions, chives
- infused oils for drizzlings
Set up the bar, and then stand next to each other and survey what creations and combinations everyone else comes up with. You might find something you like that you would have never thought of yourself. At the end of the day, what you'll have is all those people you grew up with gathered together enjoying a meal, your mother beaming as she surveys her family.
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Disclaimer: The contributor was compensated by Dreamfarm for recipe development. Any opinions expressed are her own.