Speckled Eggs

I don’t love Easter candy. I can’t stand jelly-beans or those hollow so-called “chocolate” rabbits, and the look of Cadbury Creme eggs is enough to make me gag. But I do love the idea of springtime baked goods like hot-cross buns, Ukrainian/Mennonite paska, and Italian Ciambellone. Oh yeah, and I also love cupcakes. So, on Thursday, inspired by these cupcakes, these gussied-up pound cakes, and armed with the world’s greatest yogurt cake recipe, I decided I couldn’t make it through the weekend without my own confections. The result? Let’s just say the Easter Bunny couldn’t do much better himself:

Happy  Feaster!


Easter Feaster

If there’s one thing I’ve learned about Corner Brookers it’s that family comes first. This is especially true when holidays roll around: businesses and shops close early, traffic slows down (except at supermarkets) and families take to the stream trail together to feed the swans after feeding themselves at home.

Stream Trail Swan - Image Courtesy of Tom Cochrane via Flickr

Seeing families enjoy their holidays together always makes me miss my own scattered family and the delicious (although sometimes outrageous) food we eat.

Not being one to feel cornered in, I draw upon my own time-honored and festive recipe that makes me feel like I’m still the life of the party — after all, if I can’t be at home at least I can eat well. So, I begin the festivities with some sparkle:

When the bubbly’s poured, I prepare a delicious Lamb with White Wine and Mascarpone.

First, I cook 4 slices of prosciutto in a frying pan until crisp. Then, in the same pan, I sear 4 lamb loin chops (boneless lamb steaks are ideal; unfortunately, they’re also hard to find).

When the lamb chops are browned and cooked as desired, I transfer them to the oven to keep warm (I keep the oven at around 200°F so the chops don’t continue to cook and toughen).

I add 1 clove of crushed garlic to the pan and stir until a garlicky aroma fills the room. Next, I add 3/4 cup dry white wine and de-glaze the pan (scrape up the brown bits and garlic), bring the mixture to a boil, and then simmer until the wine reduces by half. Then I add 1/2 cup of mascarpone and 1/4 cup cream and stir constantly over medium-low heat until the sauce thickens.

Suddenly (and always to my surprise), my delicious meal for two is ready (seriously, it takes 25 minutes). To serve, I arrange two lamb chops on a plate and top each with 1 piece of crispy prosciutto. I drizzle the mascarpone sauce on top, and sprinkle the lot with a fresh thyme or tarragon.

And served with a ballsy Chardonnay like this:

My holiday meal for two is complete.

If ever I’m lucky enough to have a couple of family member drop by (hint, hint), I know this meal can double, triple or quadruple with equal ease and success,  leaving me with loads of time to share with the family.

What’s your favorite holiday meal?