Thursday, April 17, 2014

Easter – a food feast by Liz Fielding

Think Easter treats and the first thing that will come to mind is the chocolate egg. My mother always said that the chocolate in Easter eggs was better than any other and I imagine it’s because it has to be very smooth to get that thin, crisp shell. They are still, even with all the amazing chocolate on sale, a very special treat.

But Easter isn’t just about eggs.

It starts on Shrove Tuesday with the pancakes. We have ours exactly the way my mother made them. Thin pancakes, sprinkled with sugar and lemon juice and folded into quarters.

Then comes the Simnel cake, traditionally baked for Mothering Sunday. In the UK we have our very traditional Mother’s Day on the fourth Sunday in Lent, a day when girls in “service” were given time off to visit their mothers. They took home a cake and the wild flowers they picked as they walked home as gifts.

Then on Good Friday we have Hot Cross Buns. Fresh, soft, full of fruit and spices and buttered. I have to confess that these go on sale not long after Christmas and this last weekend my daughter brought us some particularly luscious ones with chocolate, orange and caramel. Yum.

And finally, Easter Day – the time for chocolate eggs and something very special for lunch. A turkey, maybe, if there’s to be a big family gathering, or a piece of pork roasted until the crackling is golden.

What special treats do you look forward to at this time of year? What are your special traditions?

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Jenny Haddon said...

We'll be having spring lamb and early asparagus on Easter day - followed by pancakes again now that lent is over. My partner is coeliac, so our pancakes are gluten free, made with maize meal, and they are lovely with real crisp edges.

Love the look of your simnel cake. I've never made one.

Anonymous said...

Jenny - I've made a Simnel Cake, and it is not that easy to toast the marzipan, leaving the disciples 'golden' rather than 'charred'!!
I'm impressed.

My daughter arrived home last night from her 'trip-of-a-lifetime' to see the cherry blossom in Japan, and my son is here on his Easter break from Uni, so we will be having a celebratory meal on Easter Sunday.

They may be 23 and 21, but I've bought them each an Easter Egg as usual, and we always exchange small gifts.

My garden flowers [all but the narcissi, which are over] are in glorious bloom. By Sunday the bluebells will be in full flower, too, as will all my tree-blossom. But I think the late-planted hyacinths were planted rather, erm, too late - and may miss the day itself!

Easter Greetings to all, from
Caroline Praed

Annie West said...

Liz, I confess I've never had Simnel Cake. I'll have to remedy that. I'm looking forward to the hot cross buns. We've resisted the temptation to eat them prior to Easter (they've been in stores for far too long).
Have a happy Easter!

Liz Fielding said...

We'll be having lamb this year, too, Jenny. It's the traditional meat, isn't it? And pancakes again - what a brilliant idea. I've ordered raspberries and they are a perfect match!

Liz Fielding said...

Your daughter's trip sounds wonderful, Caroline. I hope you have a fabulous Easter. (I've bought the dh a Lindt chocolate bunny!)

Liz Fielding said...

Annie, I'm in awe of your willpower on the hot cross bun front - we've had tons!