My friend and her daughter spend a couple of days making sure that their Easter meals will be perfect, because they invite all the family back after Church; for them, it's continuing their grandparents' traditions. The table is generously loaded with seasonal dishes, each appropriate for the day of the holy cycle.
They bake their own breads, make their own pasta, the salads and fish fresh. I'm not sure which dishes they're making this year: neither is up to her usual standard of fitness. But the table will will look like a magazine spread, the dishes colourful and tempting.
(Carrots, mint potatoes, peaches, parsley and Autumn roses somehow come to mind from a couple of conversations)
Edited to add: they always have a home-baked simnel cake.
What does your family do?
My grandmother used to make a cake that as a kid I loved. As an adult I just can’t eat it, waaaay too sweet. It is a yellow cake with lemon curd filling and frosted with 7 minute frosting, and dried coconut flakes on the frosting. It is the frosting that gets to me, 7 minute frosting is insanely sweet.
I might try to make one for the kids just to keep the tradition alive, but damn, that frosting is crazy sweet
I've never heard of 7 minute frosting! Could you please share the recipe?
My Greek friend gave me a gorgeous Tzoureki (without the red egg), and we’re so grateful for her generosity.
The bread looks like the Jewish challah but is a little richer in taste, denser in texture (yet light and fluffy), flavoured with oranges and a hint of anise. Delicious warmed, toasted or as French toast... smothered with fresh sweet butter, jam, honey, cheese or yoghurt, or whatever you fancy!
It’s tough when we’re cleaning out for Passover!! I have a special part of my freezer for the things I can’t use up in time: I’m keeping it locked away in there.
I don’t know which recipe my grandmother used, but I’m sure they’re all similar. Here is a link to King Arthur Flour’s version
It’s basically egg whites and sugar beaten in a double boiler. As a kid I actually thought it was marshmallow cream, since 7 minute frosting is very sweet, sticky, and does taste similar to marshmallows
Pizza Rustica. Yum!
Aunt Bridget's Easter Cookies
I barely remember my Aunt Bridget, but my grandmother made these every year for Easter, and always referred to them as Aunt Bridget's cookies
1/2 cup butter (soft, NOT melted)
1 cup sugar
4 large eggs (or 5 small ones)
1 teaspoons vanilla
5 cups flour sifted BEFORE measuring
5 teaspoons baking soda
1/4 teaspoon salt
Blend butter and sugar. Mix in eggs and vanilla. Add remaining ingredients. Roll out on board and knead dough until dry, about 5-10 minutes. Shape into knots. Bake at 375 degrees for 10-12 minutes
When cool ice with confectioners sugar mixed with water, add food coloring for pastel Easter colors
Makes about 42 cookies, tastes better after sitting for a day or two
Personal notes: To shape knots, pinch off small pieces of dough and roll into a thick rope and tie it in a small round knot. My recipe just says to shape into knots because I've made them with my grandmother and knew what this meant, but for someone making these for the first time it is sort of vague. I'll try to find a picture on the internet of similar cookies to show you how they're supposed to look. Some people put sprinkles on the finished cookies, Grandma never did
Also, I've recently changed the icing. I replace the water in the icing with the juice and zest of an orange. I've also done lemon and lime, though personally the orange is my favorite
My Spanish friend from Madrid brought in some special mini-doughnuts today. She said that in her family they always eat them for Easter time. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to get the recipe from her but I'll see if I can grab one online. They're delicious, not overly sweet and just bite-size.
Aha! Rosquillas! This recipe is flavoured with anise, I think T may have added some orange zest as well. She tied hers into little knots so, as they cooked, they puffed into breast shapes.
For DB, Pastiera:
I'm sorry the recipe is in metric measures. Should be easy enough to convert, though. They do suggest you start on Maundy Thursday, do the next bit on the Friday before Easter and then eat after church on Sunday!!
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