A big part of our celebrations center on food, whether it’s at our own tables or in restaurants.

And this Monday, when Memorial Day is observed, is no exception.

On Memorial Day, we remember all those who died serving in our country’s armed forces. Show your patriotism by getting out the small flags and your red, white and blue decorations. Some families visit cemeteries or memorials; others might have a picnic. I don’t remember any picnics, but I do remember the small red paper poppies the American Legion sold and the adults wore on Memorial Day. As a youngster, I didn’t understand the reason, I just knew it meant something special.

I asked Kay Ewing for a good Memorial Day brunch idea. Kay owned the Everyday Gourmet Cooking School for 29 years and authored four cookbooks. I credit her with teaching so many local residents how to enjoy cooking.

Her “everyone participates” classes were fun and educational. She’s now retired and her fourth cookbook, “Kay Ewing’s Cooking School Cookbook —The Final Course,” is where these recipes can be found. They were in her Springtime Celebrations class and will fit perfectly into my Red, White and Blue Memorial Day Brunch theme.

I know you probably have a shrimp and grits recipe, but this is an especially good one. Louisiana shrimp and blueberries, perfect for the salad, are both in season right now. And for dessert, this lemon cake makes a tasty end to a Memorial Day brunch.

Corinne Cook is a columnist for The Advocate. Reach her at food@theadvocate.com.