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Easter Menus!

  • icey Mar 30, 2009 08:27 AM
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Hi Everyone,
Just wanted to know what you are all making for Easter, so that I could possibly take some of your ideas to add to my menu. We will be having a piece of lamb (hopefully a leg) and most likely a ham as well.
Thanks!!!

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  1. If I get my vote, I'll make penne with vodka sauce. It's my favorite holiday dinner substitute (since it's often just 2 or 3 of us).

    But I must share, I am dying to try the Easter pie I saw Ray Liotta make last week on Martha Stewart. It looks wonderful!

    http://www.marthastewart.com/recipe/e...

    And, WOOHOO, now the video of the show is posted so I can watch the whole thing. I will post that link over on the Food Media board of anyone else is interested in checking it out.

    13 Replies
    1. re: kattyeyes

      After getting some advice on another thread, I'm making a southern Easter:

      Relish Tray w/ Pimento Cheese
      Deviled Eggs
      Ham Glazed with Brown Sugar and Mustard
      Scalloped Potatoes
      Roasted Sweet Potatoes
      Green Beans with Bacon and Onions
      Green Salad with Pears, Strawberries, Blue Cheese and Pecans
      Dinner rolls
      Lemon Cake
      Ambrosia Salad

      1. re: jenhen2

        jenhen2 - enjoyed looking at that menu, wish I was eating at your house - you did an excellent job of your southern menu, excellent!

        1. re: bayoucook

          Thanks! And thanks for all your help with it. I'll let you know how it goes! Happy Easter!!!!

        2. re: jenhen2

          i'm doing a similiar menu, however am adding my great grandmother's Easter pie. i am interested in your lemon cake.....as i am a sucker for a good lemon anything. do you have a tried and true recipe?

          1. re: heyjude344

            I've made the lemon cake with lemon curd and mascarpone from Epicurious and it's great. It's a little more fancy-style cake - a little delicate. If you're looking for a more homey version, I like Cooks Illustrated's lemon layer cake. I can paraphrase the recipe here if either of those sound interesting to you. Let me know.

          2. re: jenhen2

            I agree that looks awesome! And I'm sure it will be a winner with the guests. The strawberry salad is killer. And oh my favorite! Scalloped Potatoes! Yahoo!

          3. re: kattyeyes

            I haven't seen that video, but I just made my Pizza Rustica today, and will make my grain pie tomorrow.

            1. re: roxlet

              My mom just saw the video this week and told me it's very similar to a quiche she makes (the actual recipe's name is Cheesy Spinach Pie or some such), so I would be just as happy to eat it that way minus the crust. It was fun to watch Ray Liotta regardless...and I like the idea of prosciutto in the pie rather than sausage as my mom's recipe calls for, so maybe we'll switch it up.

              We finally decided we're having filet mignon and creamed spinach for dinner. And I just picked up all the ingredients for key lime cheesecake. I'm making it with Neufchatel (lower fat) cream cheese this time...and fresh-squeezed key limes. I will be cursing this idea later as I'm sure it will take several of the little suckers to yield the juice needed. ;)

              1. re: kattyeyes

                I had to drive around today but I found a farm stand with their own just-picked spinach for my creamed spinach tomorrow. I'm so psyched!

                1. re: coll

                  Ohhhh, nice! I will make it a shopping quest today and see if I can be so lucky. :) Enjoy!

                  1. re: coll

                    I would be so lost without our farmers market. Fresh heirlooms, spinach, arugula, herbs, anything you can imagine. 2 streets worth of fresh fruits and veggies.

                    I know, FL has spoiled me. But I do miss the apples in the fall, fresh cider and cherrys from the Traverscity MI Cherry festival and the rhubard. But otherwise, we are spoiled here with year round fresh produce.

                    1. re: kchurchill5

                      Do they grow spinach down there? I thought it was a cold weather crop. We only get it here in NY in early spring and late fall.

                      1. re: coll

                        Several farms grow it. It does better in winter months here, but there a few organic farms that grow it spring and fall too. One farm even does summer but in controlled green houses.

            2. we'll make rack of heirloom iowa pork--rubbed up and cooked to pink-plus--and au gratin potatoes using tom valenti's very simple (and wonderful) recipe--heavy cream infused with 15 cloves of garlic and a handful of thyme. i know from experience that these potatoes are great with lamb. since some folks go out of their way to make scalloped potatoes and ham, that match seems promising, too.

              1. We will be having ham, of course.

                There are 2 must have sides at our Easter dinner that my family cannot live without::

                Garlic cheese grits.

                Homemade pickled beets/pickled eggs( made with juice from the pickeled eggs.

                1. From southernliving.com - making this one plus one more dessert (for 10)

                  Sweet-Hot Plum-Glazed Ham

                  • Classic Parmesan Scalloped Potatoes

                  • Asparagus Amandine

                  • Baby Blue Salad With Fresh Pears

                  • Refrigerator Yeast Rolls

                  • Lemon-Coconut Cake

                  • Peach Iced Tea

                  1. Deviled eggs (with lox, with deviled ham and with smoked paprika and anchovies)
                    Italian sausage and feta boureki
                    Salad of roast asparagus and jamon serrano in lemon chive dressing
                    Kibbeh (undecided)

                    Spice-rubbed butterflied leg of lamb
                    Wild rice pilaf
                    Roast beets

                    Homemade sugar-free peeps
                    Cardamom cake with saffron frosting

                    I am also working on a rose-flavored vodka cocktail with a floater for a slightly irreverent cocktail hour after 5 hours of Mass within the span of 24 hours. If I can't get it to work, then we're having cucumber caipirinhas and Malbecs.

                    9 Replies
                    1. re: JungMann

                      We usually have a nice brunch at the house, poolside, weather depending!

                      This year we are making ...

                      Grilled "Pissed" Off Shrimp
                      Grilled Spicy Lamb Sticks
                      Grilled Citrus Salmon (if fresh fish is caught that week, we will have snapper, tuna, or wahoo)
                      Grilled Veggie Cous Cous Salad topped with a balsamic glaze
                      (I like to grill!)
                      Arugula Salad with Parmesan crisps

                      Last time we were in NY, we had a refreshing ginger cocktail at the Green Table in Chelsea Market...Ginger infused vodka with Prosecco and cider, it was great and we have recreated it with an island twist, so that will our afternoon cocktail.

                      My Sister in Laaw is in charge of dessert, so who knows what yummy morsels she will be preparing!

                      1. re: bermudagourmetgoddess

                        I'm curious, are those grilled shrimp of yours the species colorfully known as "pissing shrimp" in Chinese cooking? I hadn't known that they were available this side of the Pacific.

                      2. re: JungMann

                        Where is your cardamom cake recipe from? I've been playing around with a couple of cakes from Scandinavian Feasts, adding cardamom to some of them.

                        I tried a rose flavoured cocktail once ahead of a Middle Eastern dinner, using rosewater, and was less than thrilled with the results. If you come up with a recipe that you like, please do post on the Spirits board.

                        1. re: MMRuth

                          I use a cardamom cake recipe from Epicurious that my parish has been asking for since I debuted it at last year's Easter party. http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                          As for the rose-flavored cocktail, I avoid rosewater in cocktails. Try using Rooh Afza, instead, which is a sort of rose-based cordial. It marries well with dairy and could make for an interesting white russian, but be careful with the amounts you use. It is very concentrated and in aqueous solutions a little goes a long way.

                          I forgot that I'm also working on an additional dessert around the boxes of Girl Scout samoas I purchased this year. My initial thoughts are for a white cake with chunky caramel frosting or a samoa semifreddo.

                          1. re: JungMann

                            Thanks - I think you posted that link for the cake for me last year, now that I think of it!

                        2. re: JungMann

                          My menu has undergone a little tweaking, but I think we've finalized:
                          Assorted deviled eggs
                          Sausage, feta and roasted pepper boureki
                          Baba ghannouj with fresh pita
                          Crudités and cheeses

                          Spice-rubbed butterflied leg of lamb
                          Cous cous paella a la Valenciana
                          Poached egg-topped asparagus and jamon serrano in a lemon-chive dressing
                          Roast beet salad with arugula, goat cheese and spiced walnuts

                          Key lime pie
                          Cardamom cake with rose-saffron frosting
                          Girl Scout Samoa parfait

                          For the cocktail, I am working on a recipe for rose and lychee martinis with the cucumber caipirinhas and cucumber lemonade as back-ups.

                          1. re: JungMann

                            Your menu sounds really good! I laughed at your comment about the 5 hrs of Mass in 24 hrs--ain't that the truth! What kind of spices in the leg of lamb? I've seen an Indian spiced leg of lamb that looked interesting. I would love to try a cucumber caipirinha.

                            1. re: sibaik

                              The lamb recipe I use borrows heavily from North Africa: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo.... I find this particularly blend far more complex and complimentary to grilled lamb than most Indian tandoori or kabab masalas, though I will still likely serve a harissa raita on the side to infuse my heritage into the menu.

                              After 5 hours of Mass on top of the hours of organ and choir rehearsal, I am going to more than "try" my cocktails that day!

                              1. re: JungMann

                                You better, you'd of earned it! I love lychee martini. Your addition of rose though is causing me wonder. Lychee taste like cherries to me. What about pomegranete?
                                I"m thinking you'd get a classic rhubarb and cherries sort of cocktail.
                                I'm trying to come up with a nice cocktail myself...blanking. Or perhaps take some bakers sugar, and color it pale pink, and flavor with the rosewater for the rim.

                          2. There will be the 2 of us. I am making roasted rack of lamb with black beluga lentils and garlicky spinach. Something with rhubarb for dessert.

                            1. I am not cooking this year :( but my Italian family Easters usually include a strata or frittata with loads of fresh herbs.... some roasted asparagus (the best time of the year for it!).... Easter bread (those tacky braided egg-breads with the eggs stuck in them - so Italian)... fruit salad... spinach soup (with or without veal - made a lot of lemon)... roasted or scalloped potatoes.... stuffed mushrooms with garlic... and of course the HAM!

                              15 Replies
                              1. re: lemiller610

                                No lasagna? ;) I think I made it through most of high school before I learned that's an Italian family thing and everyone else's holiday dinners don't begin with lasagna. HA HA! But it was really wonderful, however overfilling and excessive it was!

                                1. re: kattyeyes

                                  I make lasagna for Palm Sunday and then a roast on Easter. This year I'm doing a boneless veal roast which I'm going to stuff with a pesto filling. Haven't decided exactly what that will consist of, leaning towards pesto with lots of whole pignoli. Potato croquettes, roasted asparagus, and if the local farm has spinach yet, creamed spinach. Then grain pie for dessert, and some cannoli.

                                  1. re: coll

                                    That works nicely...splitting the lasagna from the roast. And your veal roast sounds fab with pesto and pignoli. I actually love your entire menu from start to finish. But I must add...when I spoke to my hairdresser yesterday (who is Sicilian), we were talking about Easter dinner plans and before he got to telling me about the main course (believe he said lamb), he said, "Of course, we're having lasagna." It's like a crazy badge we wear so proudly. ;)

                                    1. re: kattyeyes

                                      Lasagne's not something I see a whole lot of while actually in Italy though (north or south). I wonder if it's more of an American-Italian thing?

                                      1. re: greedygirl

                                        I haven't been to Italy, but I take your word for it. It probably is more of an American-Italian thing. I just get a chuckle out of it as it reminds me of childhood holidays.

                                        1. re: greedygirl

                                          lasagne is huge in Italy. it just doesn't look ANYTHING like American lasagna.

                                          1. re: jaykayen

                                            http://www.elise.com/recipes/archives...

                                            Your post made me curious so I looked around for recipes. This one uses panchetta, ground beef, pork, and Italian sausage, and uses a bechamel sauce instead of the ricotta and egg that I usually use in my Americanized lasagna. It sounds and looks delicious, but is that what you'd call Italian lasagna? Can you point out a recipe? I'd love to make it. Not for Easter (I'm sick in bed!) but soon.
                                            Thanks!

                                            1. re: fern

                                              Fern, this sounds great and I've saved it. Since I have Hazan's Bolognese sauce in the freezer and also a few small lasagne size strips of past also, I may give this a whirl. Thanks for the research.

                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                Oh, good! I'm anxious to read your report. It does sound awfully good!

                                                1. re: c oliver

                                                  C, Hazan has a recipe in Essentials for this, using her bolognese, fresh pasta, and bechamel, if you actually have the book. It's called something like "green lasagne with bolognese."

                                                  1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                    I DO have that book. Thanks, Caitlin (That's a great name you have, isn't it?)

                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                      I just looked: it's Baked Green Lasagne with Meat Sauce, Bolognese Style, p. 215. It's layers of pasta, bolognese, bechamel, and parmigiano. I once made this for Christmas dinner, using duck ragu in place of bolognese.

                                                      This style is so different from heavy, cheesy Italian-American lasagne with ricotta, etc. (which I also love). It's much more delicate, especially with the fresh pasta.

                                            2. re: greedygirl

                                              Lasagna is very common in Italy, but often it is of a different type than the usual kind in the US. In Italy, it is often made with bechamel sauce and not so much with the layers of meat and cheese. I have had lasagna many, many times in Italy, and not just in the south. WHen I was studying in Florence, I would have it on a regular basis.

                                              1. re: roxlet

                                                I have seen it in Italy, obviously, but it's not quite so ubiquitous, ifyswim.

                                            3. re: kattyeyes

                                              It used to not be a big deal to eat an endless meal, but we just don't burn it off like we used to. Christmas Eve is the only day we still go nuts. My menu is based on some of my husband's favorite things, he's just not into Easter so I try to make it a little special for him.

                                      2. I seem to have invited people over, not sure yet whether it will be lunch, dinner, or a late boozy lunch! We'll be nine or so, which means I'll have to borrow chairs. So far, I'm thinking of a pea soup with tarragon, and oeufs a la neige for dessert - since both can be made ahead of time, and the latter is a fun play of sorts on Easter eggs. I'd love to serve rack of lamb, but am a little concerned about making it for so many people and heating up my kitchen. If I find favas, I may do a canape that uses them ... but so far, the rest is up for grabs.

                                        21 Replies
                                        1. re: MMRuth

                                          I've revised this a bit:

                                          So far unidentified canapes - maybe the prawn paste that I made at Christmas, for one. I decided to nix the soup - too many dishes for this many people.

                                          Rack of Lamb
                                          Braised Peas and Lettuce
                                          Pureed Potatoes (from Goin's book - you can make them ahead of time, which is great)

                                          And, the oeufs a la neige, which I realized is not the same as Iles Flottantes - I need to see if I think the poached egg whites can be made ahead of time, otherwise I'll go with the latter. Oh, and I may make the creme anglaise a pistachio one.

                                          I think there will now be 7 of us. I want to roast 4 racks of lamb and am wondering if any one has any experience with partially cooking racks of lamb ahead of time, then putting them back in the oven to finish them off.

                                          Thanks!

                                          1. re: MMRuth

                                            I have tried half way and then finishing. I wasn't pleased with the results. Just me though. My friend makes them that way and she has good results. I marinade mine all day in herbs, garlic, olive oil and lemon zest and then roast, but they take so little time anyways.

                                            I'm having 16 and other than getting the menu I am way behind. Shopping will be the day before if I am lucky and then I have about 4 hours to do everything that day. Should be interesting.

                                            1. re: MMRuth

                                              I always saute them on high heat first and then finish in the oven, maybe that would work for you.

                                              1. re: coll

                                                I do the same for mine, never worked well. Would love to know if anyone has success. With sixteen people I need to cook a few my self.

                                                1. re: kchurchill5

                                                  Here's what I do and it always comes out perfect.

                                                  Marinade while bringing to room temp: garlic or shallot, lemon juice, oil, white wine or ver jus, rosemary, parsley and oregano.
                                                  Add salt and pepper, sear on all sides five minutes per side.
                                                  Bake at 425 with fat down for 10 minutes, then 10 minutes on the other side.
                                                  Let stand 10 minutes, slice and serve au jus.

                                                  Hope that helps. Always works for me.

                                                  1. re: coll

                                                    Thanks - I was looking at various recipes - I usually follow one from The Way to Cook, and saw that Goin calls for searing first, then roasting. I'm wondering if I can sear ahead of time, and then put them in the oven when my guests arrive. BTW - what level of "doneness" do you get?

                                                    1. re: MMRuth

                                                      Perfectly medium rare.

                                                    2. re: coll

                                                      That sounds like mine but I marinade over night or all day and I saute on the stove and then bake but since I have so many to cook (16) people I am making 6 racks with everything else andI was hoping someone had an easy way which MML Ruth asked about. Cooking part way and then through although I know it isn't difficult to make and doesn't take long, I have several baked items and 1 very small apartment. But appreciate the recipe and yes very similar with mine.

                                                      I absolutely love them ... I make it many times a year and my Sams Club has them very reasonable year round..

                                                    3. re: kchurchill5

                                                      Rack of lamb, we do it on the bbq, very simply no fussing with marinades. Serve with mint or with a blackberry/cab sauce, with this I don' t mess with a lot of herbs, or crusts. We love the lamb grilled (med rare to rare) with simple seasonings, basically salt and pepper. perhaps a tiny garlic smoosh with olive oil (barely). I want the complete tasty baby lamb experience and the leisure to dip in the sauces in or not. Of course, I've also done leg of lamb on the bone crusted, and leg of lamb off the bone rolled stuffed, and unstuffed. I love lamb, my favorite though, is rack. I know I'm having lamb for Easter, I think rack of lamb has me now... I need to go shopping this week.

                                                      1. re: chef chicklet

                                                        I do marinade overnight or all day, but pretty mild, some herbs rosemary, garlic, sometimes mustard, s/p and olive oil. But with all the bones it is VERY mild. The first time was by mistake. I got called into work so they had to set an extra day. I found out they were very good and definitely over powering at all. But again, I use not too much marinade but more a simple rub. I loved it. Just a little flavor but still ALL lamb taste. Rack definitely has me. Little tiny chops is great. I live a spicy lemon dill and horsey sauce, dad loves mint. Mom god rest her soul ... she passed away yesterday afternoon ... loved current and white wine. So you guessed it. 3 sauces every easter. This year. 1 less, but in memory I will make the current and white wine for me....

                                                        Easter continues. I like the blackberry cab, make that for pork tenderloin or something similar but not for lamb, sounds like a good idea.

                                                        1. re: kchurchill5

                                                          kchurchill, please accept my condolences. so sorry to read that you've just lost your mother. Serving her favorite currant and wine sauce will be a lovely way to remember her on Easter. I hope preparing this special meal for your family brings you some comfort.

                                                          1. re: fern

                                                            Thank you very much, that is very sweet. Yep, just for her and I prefer the mint, but will eat my fair share of current and white wine ... Got to move on and she would of wanted that. I hope you have a great easter as well. Good times, family, friends and of course FOOD!!

                                                          2. re: kchurchill5

                                                            Many condolences.

                                                            1. re: kchurchill5

                                                              So sorry to hear, take care now.Oh do keep making the sauces, its a nice tradition.

                                                      2. re: MMRuth

                                                        Tell me about this prawn paste, MMRuth!

                                                        1. re: JasmineG

                                                          Here's the link and some pictures to when I made it for Christmas. If you want more details, I'm happy to post them. I've also made potted smoked salmon - I think I posted about that on that thread as well.

                                                          1. re: MMRuth

                                                            Such a tease, there was no link!

                                                            1. re: JasmineG

                                                              Oops!

                                                              http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/5937...

                                                        2. re: MMRuth

                                                          Too bad my husband and I can't arrive a couple of months early :) It sounds lovely, MMR, as usual

                                                        3. re: MMRuth

                                                          Crown Roast of Lamb? For a crowd is the easiest.

                                                          1. re: chef chicklet

                                                            Hmm - I will look into that ....

                                                        4. I usually make baked eggplant, stuffed artichokes, and asparagus/guyere tart

                                                          8 Replies
                                                          1. re: laliz

                                                            Is that the Asparagus/gruyere tart with Black pepper crust from , I think, Bon Appetit 6 or 7 years ago? YUM! my fav recipe. I will wait for my local asparagus tho in 2 -3 weeks

                                                            1. re: Bigley9

                                                              Do you have a link to that recipe, B? Our local asparagus will be in about then also. Sounds great.

                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                I think this is the recipe Bigley9 is referring to:

                                                                http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...

                                                                1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                  Thanks, Caitlin. I'll definitely fix it. I was surprised that it calls for 3# of asparagus but only read one reviewer who reduced it to 2#. And it's great that it serves 8. A nice Sunday luncheon dish to share with friends.

                                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                                    That's the recipe! Thanks Caitlin. I never use more than 2 lbs and I do use the tart pan

                                                                  2. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                    Are you supposed to use just a regular pastry crust, or am I missing something?

                                                                    1. re: coll

                                                                      If you click on Black Pepper and Sour Cream Pastry Dough, at the top of the ingredient list, it takes you to the recipe for the crust. It's not obvious, since it's just in bold and not highlighted in a different color.

                                                                      1. re: Caitlin McGrath

                                                                        Thanks so much, my husband loves, loves, loves tons of black pepper, I was hoping there was some in the crust too. I'm going to make this as soon as the local crop hits the stands.

                                                            2. Not sure what you'd call this - a New England Easter? a Mid-Atlantic Easter - but I'm making Crabcakes and Lemon Meringue. Oh yeah. Or more accurately, I'm encouraging my lovely mother to make said items. Mulling over these two recipes:

                                                              http://feastonthecheap.wordpress.com/...

                                                              http://feastonthecheap.wordpress.com/...

                                                              1. I am thinking of braised lamb shanks with spring vegetables. I love the pea soup idea- very springy.

                                                                1. Rack of lamb marinated with garlic, rosemary, olive oil and dijon and baked. Served with a minted horshradish sauce.

                                                                  Peas and potatoes mashed with parm and shallots and a mint butter

                                                                  A nice salad of wild greens, grilled pears, peaches, grilled sweet onions, with blue cheese and walnut croutons and a honey vinaigrette

                                                                  Goat cheese biscuits

                                                                  Walnut bread pudding

                                                                  1. We are kinda weird. We have a roast turkey (there is still lots of snow on the ground in Northern Alberta) and mashed or roasted potatoes, stuffing, seasonal veg, canned corn(I'm stubborn and love it), and dessert is usually English trifle.

                                                                    1. --Martha Stewarts Rack of Lamb for 2 (an herbier Lamb Persillade)
                                                                      --This lovely Easter vegetable dish: http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/foo...
                                                                      34
                                                                      --Roast potatoes or maybe some homemade rolls
                                                                      --my husband is diabetic. Any suggestions for a delicious dessert?

                                                                      1 Reply
                                                                      1. re: SSqwerty

                                                                        Oven fried zuchinni planks and sliced tomatoes is one of my favorites. I marinade the thick tomato and zuchinni planks in just a simple herbed vinaigrette, some dried oregano and thyme, pepper and olive oil and red wine vinegar. Then I brush egg on top and only dip in seasoned fresh bread crumbs, not dried. Much lighter and a simple coating, I do this with fresh tomatoes too.

                                                                        I also like to make small stuffed tomatoes. A small - medium tomatoes, I scoop out and stuff with a mix of fresh diced veggies. Make them ahead and just bake. Top with a little cheese, really pretty, elegant and fun. They don't have to be that big and you can stuff with whatever veggies you like. I love frozen spinach, mushrooms, onions, and some squash, but anything works.

                                                                      2. Currently, the plan is:

                                                                        Appetizers:
                                                                        Deviled Eggs

                                                                        Main:
                                                                        Leg of Lamb
                                                                        Ham
                                                                        slow cooked string beans
                                                                        potato salad
                                                                        asparagus
                                                                        roast potatoes
                                                                        Salad (mixed greens, fennel, maybe pine nuts and feta?)
                                                                        Rolls

                                                                        Dessert:
                                                                        White chocolate and strawberry cheesecake
                                                                        Pound cake?

                                                                        I have some holes to fill in -- I need another appetizer (maybe fresh vegetables and an herby dip? Or a cheese plate?), and am open to edits on the mains, though the potato salad and string beans are non negotiable (grandma's bringing those). I'm feeling like it's a little boring, and I need something new and interesting. For dessert, the white chocolate and strawberry cheesecake is one of my favorite things, and I'm excited to make it, and so was thinking about a lemon or poppy seed or rum (?) pound cake for the non cheesecake eaters, which they could have with strawberries as well. Any ideas for me?

                                                                        And I need to get the final guest list count, and find out if some Jewish friends of the family are coming, because if so I'll put something chocolate and flourless on the dessert menu.

                                                                        3 Replies
                                                                        1. re: JasmineG

                                                                          I love to make a bread ring rather than rolls, a standard bread mix homemade or store bought either or and cut in a few pieces and roll, then braid and form in a circle, add melted butter and honey and bake, fresh herbs is good too if you want. Then I do a light chive butter and put it in a decorative bowl in the center of the ring. Just pretty and festive. Put a few simple crocus flowers, any spring flowers around the bread which really adds to the easter flare. They don't have to be expensive, any inexpensive at the store. I like to scatter them on the table and around the food for a festive look.

                                                                          Try asparagus bundles. I take a red pepper and cut in strips and micro for 30 sec and use that tie tie 4-5 asparagus spears. Or try a combo of white and green, just a pretty combo. Scallions cut thin also work to tie the asparagus up.

                                                                          Slow cooked green beans with pancetta and some cranberries (dried) is a very pretty dish and still has a traditional flavor. A little blue cheese makes a great dish.

                                                                          Are your friends veggie and cheese eaters or more of a bruscetta type. A smoked salmon, olive tapenade and sour cream and dill is great on bruscetta, or a light toasted shrimp dip or crab on the bruscetta with a citrus base. I like my goat and herb stuffed cherry tomatoes or marinated olives, simple, easy and compliment the eggs. Maybe a simple hummus dip with some plain crackers not to out do the main course is light but most people enjoy it. Cheese plates are always good with a variety of crackers

                                                                          Potato Salad, try a vinaigrette based with dill and fresh herbs with roasted red peppers.

                                                                          I love an angel food cake with a fresh warm fruit compote. Easy and very complimentary with a rich dinner. Also sometimes a nice dish of fruit marinated with a little honey marscapone and some simple lemon cookies.

                                                                          Roasted potatoes, do a combo of purple and white for a nice color combination, they are fun and just as easy. Last time I had an easter dinner I picked up a dozen of pre colored eggs because I forgot to make mine and I put them around on the table with pretty local leaves, branches and the small flowers. I think the flowers were all but 4 dollars for the table and 4 for the centerpiece. A simple decoration or get a big basket and just fill with inexpensive 99 cent pansies or local flowers from a walmart, home depot or local home center, just keep in the pots and put some moss around to cover it up. Great easy inexpensive centerpiece which you can plant after dinner.

                                                                          For a nice touch, Make ice cubes with red wine and freeze, serve in water glasses with some soda with a slice of lime or orange for a very pretty drink. Or even lemon ice cube just in ice water, colorful and a nice simple touch.You can also freeze some mint leaves in ice and then serve with water for a nice touch with no work.

                                                                          1. re: kchurchill5

                                                                            Ooh, I love the idea of smoked salmon on bruschetta -- nice and springy and fresh. I might do a cheese plate with some of my homemade fig jam alongside, and olives go well with all of that, and those are nice easy cold appetizers, so I won't have to worry about something warm while cooking the other stuff.

                                                                            1. re: JasmineG

                                                                              I love the salmon. I either make or just even buy a good olive tapenade. Make the bread ahead just toast plain, then when ready I top with the olive spread thin layer, so slices of smoked salmon and then my topping. Mix sour cream, just a little lemon juice and zest if you can and dill. Mix accordingly to your taste. Some like more lemon or more dill. Just a small spoon on the salmon. Really easy. All made in advance.

                                                                              Cheese and figs sound wonderful. I would definitely love that. Even though olive are on the salmon it is completely different. I do like my tomatoes too. Just a small paring knife and you can scoop out a little hole, or you small plums and cut in half and scoop out and then just fill. You can use a simple baggie with the soft herbed cheese, or goat cheese either is fine.

                                                                              Another fun thing is mini spinach dip bowls. I know good ol' famous spinach dip. I make mine in mini rolls and I also add some roasted red peppers to my dip and then I take small dinner rolls and cut the top off and then scoop out a little bread and stuff with spinach dip. Like a mini bread bowl for each person. Key is to use small rolls and bake for just 3-4 minutes until they get lightly crusty but not hard. It is a fun appetizer. Pump works great with this and most bakeries or even groceries will make them or sell them.

                                                                              Enjoy your dinner!!

                                                                        2. We have a family member who brought delicious Polish traditions to Easter that we added to the ham, asparagas, au gratin spuds menu. This year we're ditching the ham and starring kielbasa (smoked and fresh --straight from Hamtramck - Polish center of Detroit), pierogis, asparagas, deviled eggs, and Polish sweets ...with a little Prosecco.

                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                          1. re: berkleybabe

                                                                            From Dearborn ... Pierogis, we used to go to a little place in Detroit to get them, I loved them.

                                                                            1. re: berkleybabe

                                                                              Yum...I love Polish dinner! Question for you since you're having prosecco...have you ever tried lambic? We love framboise lambic when we have kielbasa and pierogis (a.k.a. Polish dinner).
                                                                              http://www.merchantduvin.com/pages/5_...

                                                                              Cheers whatever you decide. :)

                                                                              1. re: berkleybabe

                                                                                don't forget the babka! slice into wedges and grill in a skillet with lots of butter till it's crisp on the edges. yum! my grandmother was from the old country and made it best!

                                                                              2. Here's my menu:
                                                                                cream of watercress soup
                                                                                butternut squash lasagne and roasted stuffed pork loin

                                                                                red cabbage , also green beans
                                                                                green salad , potato rolls

                                                                                fresh fruit salad
                                                                                two gallettes: apple and probably plum
                                                                                semi freddo ( made and resting in the freezer)

                                                                                1. We are actually celebrating Easter at my parents' house and my mom and I have been throwing around ideas all week. I think we have it finalized:
                                                                                  Appetizers:
                                                                                  * Small portion of radicchio di Treviso, besciamel, and walnut lasagna
                                                                                  * Crostini with goat cheese & fig jam (from Chowhound)
                                                                                  * Celeriac & Celery Salad
                                                                                  Mains:
                                                                                  * Leg of lamb
                                                                                  * Ham
                                                                                  *Asparagus salad with chopped egg
                                                                                  *Roasted Potatoes
                                                                                  *Roasted Fennel with Parmigiano
                                                                                  Dessert:
                                                                                  * Not really sure yet.

                                                                                  1. I changed my potatoes to a potato and gruyere souflee
                                                                                    Also changed my veggies to an asparagus, artichoke and lemon casserole. All roasted and then baked with some broth and breadcrumbs and a light parmesan to form a nice layered crust. Really yummy and light.

                                                                                    For the kids homemade ice cream ... well maybe homemade. Got some great vanilla bean ice cream and left soften. Added fresh strawberries, fresh chunks of chocolate and nuts. My favorite technique to make a quick easy unique ice cream. Have fun with combo and even some light flavors. I often mix some dark coffee into chocolate ice cream to make a chocolate coffee ice cream and then add broken up hazelnut brittle. Re freeze and then serve. I'm making mini chocolate tortilla bowls. Regular flour tortillas and drizzle with olive oil and then a mix of cinnimon, sugar and cocoa powder and bake folded over a small empty veggie can or sauce can. Perfect desert or ice cream dish. All done way way ahead of time.

                                                                                    Still my rack of lamb, and my potatoes, also baked cauliflower and grape tomatoes with a fresh herbed vinaigrette. I'm doing my stuffed olives balls, a salmon bruschetta, sundried tomato on roasted eggplant as appetizers

                                                                                    Fresh fruit with some citrus and wine marinade and a simple parfait or compote. I like lite with the lamb and something that is very spring.

                                                                                    I also have a fresh rice dish with lemon, very plain to accent the lamb. 2 sauces for the lamb and a green salad with the roasted fruit and nuts. So fruit for desert may be out ... still in the works. It will be decided day before. Last minute run to the store, clean all night work all day, come home and 4 hours and dinner on the table.

                                                                                    1. I'm making a huge lasagna, big fat antipasto, and a happy ham. (Well, happy for the ham lovers- all I care about is leftover ham so I can make cubans with the roast pork I'm doing on Saturday.)
                                                                                      It seems boring, but it's food we all love. I'll probably twist my own arm and make spinach dip- alkapal keeps transmitting subliminal messages ".......spinach dip......make the dip or you'll be sorry......."
                                                                                      Dessert- TBA (err-determined first)

                                                                                      1. Easter is our biggest celebration of the year. We always do a themed meal having to do with the religious significance of the holiday. My husband hasn't told me the full details of the savory portion, but I know he is on a sous-vide kick and wants to feature eggs. Sous-vide lamb, various cuts (we have a bunch from our CSA) with parpadelle (sp?). a watermelon, papaya and basil? salad, quail eggs with veggies (beets, carrots?), sous-vide farm fresh eggs.

                                                                                        Dessert (my territory) is a play on a vacherin and baked alaska, but using a coconut sponge base, fresh macerated strawberries, rhubarb sorbet, mango-coconut semifreddo, and palm sugar meringue. May serve a chocolate, almond cajeta truffle/candy at the end, but i am not thrilled with the texture...

                                                                                        6 Replies
                                                                                        1. re: jsaimd

                                                                                          Your menu sounds wonderful but, for the life of me, I can't quite figure out how it relates to the theme of Jesus rising from the dead. Please connect some dots for me :)

                                                                                          1. re: c oliver

                                                                                            It is all about symbolism - we select passages each year to pair with each course. This year the focus is on sacred music about Christ. So for instance the first dessert course is put together to look like a sunrise and paired with a passage (song) about the light of Christ. Lamb - well that is more obvious...eggs, renewal and life, beets often stand for the blood of Christ. We have done bitter greens to symbolize suffering. Kind of like a Christian Seder.

                                                                                            1. re: jsaimd

                                                                                              Thank you SO much for sharing that. It's wonderful. I knew I was missing something :) I know you're going to have a nice Easter. With the good food and your spiritual devotion, how could you not? But you still have to work in the Peeps, right?!? :)

                                                                                              1. re: jsaimd

                                                                                                I like that idea. I think I might have a future dinner of "Siehe, das ist Gottes Lamm" skewers with tzatziki, "Dum transisset" Ghosht with potato "Lacri-sa-mosas", ended with "St. Matthew's Passion" Fruit Pavlova. Beats "Cantate Domino"'s delivery any day of the week.

                                                                                                1. re: JungMann

                                                                                                  Too clever!

                                                                                                2. re: jsaimd

                                                                                                  I like your creative Easter tradition. I'd like to be able to do that in the future. From a Christian standpoint, I've always thought that Easter should be the most important celebration of the year. Unfortunately most of my family and friends, including some pretty devout folks, do not have any exciting or meaningful Easter traditions. I'm going to have to change that, but in the future when I can afford to do so.

                                                                                            2. Yum...lots of delicious dishes being served this Easter! After much consideration, I am doing the dollowing:
                                                                                              Starter
                                                                                              White country bread and homebaked wholemeal rye bread with a selection of Spanish cold meats, smoked salmon pate, duck pate and hoummous.

                                                                                              Main
                                                                                              Lamb and red pepper paella

                                                                                              Dessert
                                                                                              Italian Ricotta cheesecake with Dulce de Leche

                                                                                              Happy Easter everyone!

                                                                                              1. We are from a large family, so we all bring a dish or two to pass. I am making some appetizers. All so easy! Baked Brie - a small round of brie in phyllo dough - bake according to directions on box of frozen dough. Serve with crackers. Stuffed mushrooms - just mix cream cheese and bacon, just add hot water (or sour cream) to make the cream cheese easier to manage. Bake with the brie. Deviled eggs with mayo, mustard, paprika,salt & pepper, and little horseradish for a kick. - YUM!

                                                                                                1. my mother has most of the bases covered this year so i am not going to work myself into a cooking frenzy like i did last year. however, i have an extra carton of eggs that weren't hard-boiled for dying, so i think i'll contribute some sort of quiche or fritatta. maybe with sweet potato and sauteed onions. or asparagus and peas. or both!

                                                                                                  6 Replies
                                                                                                  1. re: xavi1979

                                                                                                    A savory sweet potato quiche is great with spinach and cheese and backed with a little nutmeg. It is wonderful. I make it quite a bit. Some pecans and what a great savory quiche, but with a sweet flavor.

                                                                                                    1. re: kchurchill5

                                                                                                      hmmm. I'll just take your word for it, I am having difficulty wrapping my brain around this. I keep thinking about my sweet potato pie, and how I really woundn't wnat to find any spinach or cheese in it.

                                                                                                      1. re: chef chicklet

                                                                                                        Same here. No offense, but this reminds me of the other thread in which someone had put white chocolate chips in the potato salad! ;)

                                                                                                        1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                                                          wow.

                                                                                                          but then I react the same way to lobster with a vanilla sauce. omg.

                                                                                                          1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                                                            No that I would have a hard time with. The sweet potato and spinach works, honest.

                                                                                                          2. re: chef chicklet

                                                                                                            I agree, but it really is good.

                                                                                                      2. I am making a turkey meatloaf in the shape of Jesus. I am sure everyone will probably fight over the legs.

                                                                                                        I am also making deviled eggs and hot-cross buns.

                                                                                                        1 Reply
                                                                                                        1. re: melly

                                                                                                          That IS a joke, right? And a darn funny one :)

                                                                                                        2. Do you have hot cross buns in America? I've just remembered that I need to buy some....

                                                                                                          4 Replies
                                                                                                          1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                            There's some childhood song about hot cross buns, but... I'm not really sure what they are. I only recently learned of their connection to Good Friday. Sad that we've lost some of our few culinary traditions.

                                                                                                            1. re: Agent Orange

                                                                                                              ....if you have no daughters you can give them to your sons.... one hay penny two hay penny, hot cross buns.
                                                                                                              We used to sing hot CROSSED buns (along with doing this clapping arm crossing dance step its really quite lyrical!) in fact, I find myself calling them hot crossed buns at work the other day and no one really knew what I was talking about,

                                                                                                            2. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                              Yes, we do. I ate one last week! I meant to make the ED recipe today, but, well, that's not going to happen.

                                                                                                              1. re: greedygirl

                                                                                                                Yes, we do have hot cross buns in America.

                                                                                                                Here's a recipe and some info for you, Agent Orange, if you are inspired to bake:
                                                                                                                http://www.courant.com/entertainment/...

                                                                                                              2. All my easter guests cancelled ( sick parents, sick themsleves etc etc) so i am solo now. boo hoo.
                                                                                                                lamg shanks for one doesnt seem quite right.

                                                                                                                2 Replies
                                                                                                                1. re: cassoulady

                                                                                                                  Oh, fine, tell me at the last minute and I've already loaned the jet to a friend for the weekend. I love lamb (or lamg) shanks :)

                                                                                                                  1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                    I know... so sad! oh well! : )

                                                                                                                2. I didn't notice the thread and started my own until kattyeyes pointed out my error. Mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa!

                                                                                                                  I am roasting a goat. I am also looking at doing a second meat. I'm leaning towards deep frying a turkey. That gives me an excuse to make corn bread.

                                                                                                                  I

                                                                                                                  7 Replies
                                                                                                                  1. re: bigfellow

                                                                                                                    Oh, yum! I have only seen the deep-fried turkey experience on TV. Bet it's fab!

                                                                                                                    P.S. I sometimes "make excuses" in the form of chili just so I can make cornbread, too. ;)

                                                                                                                    1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                                                                      About half the time I do a turkey, I deep fry it. It isn't greasey and it is very moist meat wise. I inject the meat with durkee's or frank's hot sauce befofre frying. It becomes a little piquant!

                                                                                                                      1. re: bigfellow

                                                                                                                        I totally wish I were your neighbor! ;)

                                                                                                                        1. re: kattyeyes

                                                                                                                          You're welcome anytime.

                                                                                                                          I've started filling out the menu:

                                                                                                                          melon wrapped in prociutto with a squeeze of lime
                                                                                                                          stuffed mushrooms
                                                                                                                          cretons on croutons
                                                                                                                          mini tourtieres
                                                                                                                          crudities and dips

                                                                                                                          Roast Goat
                                                                                                                          deep fried turkey
                                                                                                                          sage stuffing
                                                                                                                          veg stuffing
                                                                                                                          green beans
                                                                                                                          asparagas
                                                                                                                          roasted veg medley
                                                                                                                          roasted potato's
                                                                                                                          potatoes dauphinoise
                                                                                                                          rice pilaf
                                                                                                                          corn bread

                                                                                                                          sacher torte
                                                                                                                          apple pie
                                                                                                                          sabayon

                                                                                                                          1. re: bigfellow

                                                                                                                            The goat (kid really) was slow cooked at 275 for 2.5 hours. Some (3) of my guests refused the goat. But the others loved it.
                                                                                                                            The turkey went over well. I hardly had any left for tonight.
                                                                                                                            The corn bread kept disapearing. I ended up making 5 pans worth for 7 people.
                                                                                                                            No dessert left, go figure on that one. lol

                                                                                                                            1. re: bigfellow

                                                                                                                              The three goat refusers? Had they ever tried goat? Can't imagine turning down anything YOU cook!

                                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                                No they had never tried goat before. But they were family and in their 7th decade so I have to forgive them.