Easter has always been special for my family. First, for its spiritual significance. But also for the sweet joy of waking up Easter morning to venture into the backyard to see if the Easter Bunny had hidden eggs and left us baskets filled with surprises. He always did, even through my high school years. My parents loved holidays, especially my mother. It always showed in the extra effort she put into making them memorable. When I became a mom, it was my turn to fill baskets and hide eggs, my turn to seek out ways to add a special touch to a lunch box or luncheon. That probably explains why I always enjoy seeing what others come up with for special occasions such as Easter time.
A few favorites
It’s hard not to love the bunny bread bowl at realmomkitchen.com. It can hold soup or veggie dip. Purists can make their own bread, but store-bought works well, too. It’s really pretty simple to make, and there’s a video at theidearoom to help out. When you hollow out the bread bowl, be sure to do it in a u-shape (not a complete bowl circle): The bunny’s head needs a “ledge” to sit on.
Staying with bread, I’m itching to give bunny pastries a try. These are dinner rolls in the guise of little rabbits. There are several recipes (and videos) to be found online. I’ve included one of the more condensed ones today, from momalwaysfindsout.com. After cutting your bunny ears, be sure to “round” them off while the dough is soft. You don’t want horns.
I have a casual luncheon to attend Easter week, and voila, I’ve found what I want to take — a carrot cheese ball. The recipe from yummyhealthyeasy.com adds a medley of flavors to a cream cheese base. See the recipe below.
Because I am my mother’s child, no Easter table is complete without flowers that say “spring.” Floral arrangements that combine flowers like tulips and gerbera daisies with Easter candies are festive as well as lovely. I’m partial to floral designs created by using a smaller vase inside a larger one. Adapt the concept pictured to literally any occasion.
Like most people I know, I’m usually crunched for time — but I’ve also lived long enough to know a little extra effort on holidays may become a memory that brings a smile to someone years down the road.
BUNNY BREAD BOWL
1 regular sized roll (make your own or store-bought)
1 bread bowl (make your own or store-bought)
2 regular chocolate chips
Pink candy for the nose
Knife and kitchen scissors
Fresh parsley (Easter “grass”), optional
Basic white rolls recipe:
2 1/2 to 3 cups all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
1 package (1/4 ounce) active dry yeast
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (8 ounces) sour cream
1/4 cup water
2 tablespoons butter
EASTER CARROT CHEESE BALL
2 (8-ounce) packages light cream cheese, room temperature
3 stalks green onion, chopped
1 tablespoon light mayonnaise
1 teaspoon white vinegar
1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
1/2 teaspoon ground mustard
1/2 teaspoon garlic salt California seasoning blend
Finely shredded cheddar cheese
Bundle or parsley
(Source: Jen Nikolaus, yummyhealthyeasy.com)
Jan Swoope is the Lifestyles Editor for The Commercial Dispatch.
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