When Easter arrives, we can all take a deep breath knowing that the cold winter is behind us and the warmer, more relaxed days of spring are ahead. Easter is traditionally the mark of spring and change. Whether your family celebrates Easter, or just likes the idea of a spring soiree, this is the occasion to welcome the new, fresh season.
The Easter bunny is known for sweets and trinket toys. While not many children would complain about a basket full of candy, we like taking the traditional Easter basket new directions. Customize your baskets for each member of family: if your child is creative, fill the basket with arts and crafts, like paints, Crayons and construction paper. For a little princess, think wands, bubbles, and tiaras. For a little sportsman, add baseball cards, a soccer ball, and a kite for spring flying. Adults can also join in on the fun! For a garden lover, include seeds, gardening gloves, and a sun hat. For a beer connoisseur, a mug, a bottle opener, and coasters. Of course, filling the customized baskets in with chocolate, marshmallows, and Jelly Beans won’t disappoint anyone either! The customized basket gives each person more than a sugar a rush, but a gift that will last through the season.
Easter food celebrates the abundance the spring, with hosts having parties that either start early, like brunch, mid-day lunches, or dinner parties. Spring food can fit well into anytime of the day, so choose the time that works best for your family. For brunch, incorporating eggs in any fashion is always a given for Easter. Try a unique deviled egg recipe, or try the new trendy Scotch Eggs for an unexpected twist. Easter lunch could be one of the easiest parties to put together, as many of the dishes can be made ahead of time. Fresh spring-like dishes such as ceviche, or seasonal roasted vegetable salad are impressive make-ahead dishes. For the more ambitious, roast a ham the day before to ease some of the stress on Easter Day. Traditional Easter dinner calls for lamb, which is an essential springtime meat. Lamb chops or leg of lamb are the best route to go. Spring herbs are the best compliment, such as the traditional mint or rosemary, to use in rubs or sauces.
Easter desserts are loved for their fun, colorful decorations. Elaborately frosted cupcakes and cookies are always fun, but for those of us who do not have an artist’s hand when it comes to decorating, using the season’s fresh fruits for pies, compotes, or for sweet quick breads is a more rustic alternative to over-the-top sweets. Or, use the occasion to break out the under-utilized, yet always classic, bundt cake pan. Flavor your bundt cake with bright lemon or stud the cake with blueberries; all you will need is a simple glaze for the final touch!