Food Friday: Hoppy Holidays!


What a busy weekend looms ahead! Passover, the Masters and Easter are all converging over  the next few days. Plus, there will be a full moon on Friday night. It could be an interesting time; chock a block with family, Arnold Palmers, chocolates, Seders and Easter bonnets.

When our children were young, I was enthusiastic about making things with them and supervised many a holiday craft. For Easter they had painted wooden eggs, dyed chicken eggs and discovered the devilishly-cleverly hidden plastic eggs stuffed with jelly beans and chocolates.

There was that long-ago regrettable Easter when we  invited a number of people (and their respective children and some inconvenient grandparents) to come to an Easter Egg hunt in our back yard. We tiptoed around the back yard during the early morning, secreting the plastic eggs we had stuffed with goodies the night before, being oh, so quiet and clever and bunny-like.

I had bought a dozen woven, trug-like baskets which I had painted, lovingly, at first, with each visiting child’s name. I added delicate sprays of decorative pastel dots, once again showing that perhaps I had a little too much time and imagination on hand. We still have our two, though they are brittle and a little frayed around the edges.

I had even designed cunning bonnets for me and the Pouting Princess, with large, blowsy, sky-blue silk hydrangeas. They were adorable. It is too bad it was just too damn hot to wear them.

The sun shone down on the back lawn, baking those plastic eggs, melting the chocolate inside to the boiling point, which subsequently got smeared over some of the children’s Easter finery. (I must point out from the safe distance of ten or twelve years that dressing siblings in matching outfits is practical only for brief Christmas photo opportunities – not for a morning-long Easter eggtravaganza. I am fairly confident that no one present that day is interested in reading my interpretation of the events. )

While the children scrambled the eggs in the back yard, the parents and visiting grandparents were more interested in the wilting snacks and the ice cubes melting in their Bloody Marys. The engaging arrangement of crudités was soon a shambles as the formerly-taut celery wilted in the antique crystal glass containers I had assembled, Martha-like, on the attractive table. Tender stalks of asparagus withered before my eyes. The carrot sticks were soon poached. The dog was looking hopefully at the bowl of chips. Everything still looked fine and dandy and edible to her, at least.

The children finally had more than enough sugar, and we had had more than enough of other peoples’ children. It was time to serve the carrot cake and the well-timed, piping hot coffee and then send them all on their way. Not through the house, though. Too much chocolate was still dripping from the sashes of some of the faster runners.

First things first – you might need a Bloody to sip while considering what to prepare for your own weekend ritual. I commend our friends at Food52 for including some Old Bay Seasoning in their Bloody Mary recipe!

We have a friend who has recently discovered her allergy to wheat. Consequently, we try to be ever-vigilant, and sensitive to her gluten-free needs.

If you are going to open your home to roaming packs of chocolate-laced children this weekend, you might want to find something that will keep you busy in the kitchen and away from the fray:

And for those following the Masters:

“I lied on my Weight Watchers list. I put down that I had 3 eggs… but they were Cadbury chocolate eggs.”
~Caroline Rhea

About Jean Sanders

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