Easter Feaster

I want to be honest and start by saying I don’t celebrate Easter traditionally. I was raised in a family where we followed no specific divinity, but we celebrated the traditionally Christian holidays. Because I grew up following no defined faith, these holidays have taken on an entirely different meaning to me. Whether it’s Easter, Thanksgiving, President’s Day, or Christmas, these holidays give me another reason to celebrate life. I’m blessed with another opportunity to be with family and friends and thank my lucky stars I’m around to see the next holiday to come. Another reason I love every single holiday is that I get to make themed food. Yert.

We’ll all be celebrating this Easter very differently, yes. That doesn’t mean we can’t make this Easter special by making some new traditions. This year, we (my very small quarantine crew) are making an Easter brunch. I’ll be making Swedish pancakes — something that brings back the best memories from my childhood. I used to call them “Daddy’s Pancakes,” because my dad would cook them like no one else could ever replicate, even though it came from a box. (I won’t have that recipe on here because it’s out of a box, but here’s a link to the product so you can try it for yourself.) My sister is going to make Babka, a traditional Polish bread that our Baci and mom would bake on Christmas and Easter.

My heart hurts for the world right now. I am praying for those who are sick or know someone who is. I encourage everyone who is able to cook amazing meals this Easter (whilst washing your hands a million times) and have abided by social distancing to give your leftovers to the homeless or someone in need. We’re all in this as one and we will heal together. Food is a love language and that’s how I will be giving my love this Easter. How will you be giving?

Here are a few recipes I will be feasting on this holiday. All of these recipes come from my family. I’m definitely in need of some comfort; cooking foods that bring back great memories just hits the spot a little differently, ya know? If you don’t celebrate Easter, choose to celebrate life this Sunday. Create new traditions with yourself or whoever you are with. The world needs a lot of love right now and it starts with us. <3

Try some of these recipes for your Easter brunch! P.S. these recipes are not the easiest, but that is what makes them authentic. They are the real-deal homemade. Make them with love <3

Bloody Lannie’s

Only 21 +

Not gonna lie, I was inspired to make these Bloody Mary’s because of the amount of vodka just sitting in my cupboard. They’re called Bloody Lannie’s because it’s my Baci’s recipe and she don’t f*** around. Her name is Elaine.

You can also make this virgin and it’d be delicious. Anyhoo, here’s whatcha gotta do. (This recipe serves 6, so unless you’re really feeling yourself this holiday I would cut the recipe in 1/2.)

Ingredients

  • 1/2 cup beef bouillon (1 cube needed)
  • 1 & 1/2 cups of vodka (and come on people, no Smirnoff.)
  • 2 quarts tomato juice (64 ounces)
  • 6 tbsp of fresh lemon juice and one lemon sliced
  • 1/4 cup Worcestershire sauce
  • 2 tsp salt (a little extra on the side for the rim)
  • 1 tsp ground pepper (a little extra on the side for the rim)
  • 1 tsp celery salt (a little extra on the side for the rim)
  • 1tsp hot pepper sauce (bartender’s choice)
  • 1 tsp horseradish
  • Old Bay

NOTE: You can exclude the extra salt if you’re not a huge fan of salty things. Save the salt for last and use an amount depending on your liking.

Instructions:

  1. Put the cube of beef bouillon into 8 ounces of boiling water; put to the side to settle. To cool it faster, put it in the fridge after the cube has dissolved. Do not put the liquid into the mixture if it is still warm.
  2. Pour the vodka first. If you’re iffy about the amount, it’s always better to start off with less because you can always add more later. We don’t want these too strong because that ruins the fun of homemade Bloody’s.
  3. Add the rest of the ingredients starting with the liquid ingredients. When it comes to the seasonings, feel free to make them your own. I love smoked paprika so I might consider adding a little bit to my batch. And if you’re not necessarily a horseradish fan, maybe exclude that from yours.
  4. With the extra salt, ground pepper, old bay, and celery salt you left to the side, mix them all together. With a lemon or lime wedge, rim the glass with the lemon juice. Flip the top and rub it into those dry ingredients creating a nice rim for your Bloody Lannie’s!
  5. Pour your bloody mix into the glass and finish it off with a lemon or lime wedge on the rim.

Mama’s Quiche

I called my mom up to get this recipe because she basically just wings it every time and it’s always amazing. She gave me her basic recipe, but the cool thing about this quiche is that you can really add almost anything you want. Bacon, mushrooms, whatever.

Originally I was going to just make scrambled eggs, but then I was like, I can do better. Don’t get me wrong, scrambled eggs give me life. But, this is brunch baby. Here’s what you need:

Ingredients

  • Pie crust (frozen or homemade)
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 cup half & half
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp pepper
  • 1 bag of spinach (depending on how much spinach you prefer)
  • 1 and 1/2 cup yellow onion, chopped
  • 1 tbsp butter
  • 2 cups shredded swiss cheese (pro tip: any cheese of your choice will work as long as it’s hard/shreddable. Cheddar cheese is fun to top it off with)

Instructions

  1. Set oven to 350 and place the pie crust into a pie dish if it’s not already premade.
  2. In a blender of your choice, combine eggs, half & half, heavy cream, salt, and pepper. Blend it until it’s nice and smooth.
  3. Chop the spinach to your liking. Saute it for a few minutes until BARELY wilted.
  4. Place the wilted spinach onto a piece of paper towel. Dab it repeatedly with paper towels, getting as much moisture out as you can.
  5. Saute the onion in the butter until it is golden.
  6. In a large bowl, combine the spinach, onion, and liquid ingredients. Mix them together with a spatula.
  7. On the bottom of the pie crust, add some of the cheese as the first layer. Add the rest of the cheese to the large bowl mixture and pour it onto the pie crust. I don’t recommend coating the entire top with a layer of cheese because it makes it more difficult for the inside of the quiche to cook.
  8. Cook for a minimum of 45 minutes, checking it at 20 and 35 minutes. Poke a hole or two on the top with a toothpick to ensure cooking. Once it is cooked, you will know because it is fluffy and not runny.

Baci’s Babka

Recommend making at least the day before. This is not an easy feat.

Emma’s babka she made this past Easter!

If you’re wondering, “Baci” is what my family calls our grandmother. I’m Polish (amongst many other things) and the proper term for grandmother in Polish is Babcia. That’s a little hard to say and spell when you’re a little grandkid, so Baci it is.

Babka is a Polish bread and we have it at almost every celebration. I never liked babka as a kid because I hated raisins… but I’m a grown-up now and I appreciate raisins. Personally, I have never made babka (yet), but my Baci, my mom, and my sister make it on occasion. Being the little asshole I am sometimes, I tried to cause some fun drama between the three, telling them that one of them was talking smack on the other’s babka. It didn’t work because they didn’t care… whatev. Exciting stuff.

This recipe isn’t easy so if you’re feeling up for a challenge, this is for you.

Ingredients

Yields 2 loaves; make one for yourself and another for yourself!

BREAD

  • 1 1/2 cups of milk, scalded (directions below)
  • 1/4 lb butter
  • 2 envelopes (4 1/2 tsp) of dry yeast dissolved in 1/2 cup of hot water & 1 tbsp sugar
  • 5 egg yolks (save one egg white for crumble) and 1 full egg
  • 1 1/2 cups sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 tbsp vanilla extract
  • 1 1/2 cups white raisins soaked in 1/4 cup of whiskey for about an hour
  • 7-8 cups of flour (will explain later)

CRUMB TOPPING (optional but recommended)

  • 3/4 cup flour
  • 2/3 stick (5 1/2 tbsp) cold butter
  • 1/2 cup sugar
For reference when I refer to mixing arms below

Instructions

  1. To scald the milk, add the milk to a saucepan and heat over medium-low heat. Stir consistently for 5 minutes or until you see steam and bubbles form on the edge of the pan. Remove from heat and add butter. Set aside to let cool.
  2. Prepare the yeast and let proof. (directions with ingredients)
  3. Beat egg yolks and egg in a mixer using a flat mixing arm until light and fluffy.
  4. To the egg mixture, add sugar, salt, sour cream, and vanilla. Beat thoroughly. Add the cooled milk mixture and continue to beat.
  5. Once beaten, add 6 cups of flour, the yeast mixture, and the raisin mixture (raisin mixture is explained in the ingredients section.) Mix well.
  6. Change to the hook mixing arm.
  7. Add the remaining flour gradually until the dough becomes sticky. Consistency should stick to your fingers and be messy, but still dry enough that you could transfer the dough in one piece. Continue to mix with the dough hook until it’s smooth and elastic.
  8. Line a large bowl with butter.
  9. Take the dough out of mixer and place onto a floured surface. Knead that baby for a few minutes to get the air bubbles out. After, put the dough in the buttered bowl and cover it with plastic wrap.
  10. Place the bowl in a warm spot until dough doubles in size or “rises.” You can put it in the oven or microwave for this part (with them turned off, of course. Don’t mess this up now.) This usually takes about 2 hours.
  11. Make crumb topping while the dough is rising. Mix together the flour, butter, and sugar and crumble with your fingers. Yum. Then wash your dirty hands and grease your loaf pans.
  12. Once the bread has risen ~hallelujah~, transfer the dough to a lightly floured cutting board. Cut the dough in half. Knead each piece for about 2 minutes. Then, put them in the greased pans.
  13. If adding crumbs, brush the tops of the dough lightly with a little water and egg white. Sprinkle the crumble evenly on top then cover both pans with plastic wrap. Let rise again for one hour. Not in the oven this time to be safe. 😉
  14. Set oven to 350. Bake for 10 minutes, then lower the temperature to 325 for about 50 minutes or until golden brown. Check after 40 minutes to see if the bread is browning too much. If so, cover lightly with foil.
  15. Voilà! You did it!

Hoppy Easter!

0