Updated Easter Dinner

table setting

Image courtesy of boxwoodclippings.com
With Easter upon us, I have started thinking about what to serve for Easter dinner.  Our family does not get very excited about the Easter meal.  I think it is because we do not really have any traditions that we all love.  Growing up my mom always made a ham, scalloped potatoes, zucchini and jello-mold.  There was no dessert to speak of (probably because we had already eaten our body weights in jelly beans and chocolate bunnies).
This year, we are going to change it up a bit.  Here is what’s cooking in our house: cracked pepper & herbed biscuits, shaved squash salad, rack of lamb, potato & fennel gratin, asparagus, and a moist almond cake for dessert (scroll for recipes).  My mouth is already watering.
Cracked Pepper & Herbed Biscuits (recipe here)
Williams Sonoma, biscuits
Image courtesy of williams-sonoma.com
Shaved Squash Salad with Marcona Almonds (recipe here)
Camille Styles, squash salad
Image courtesy of Camillestyles.com
Herb Crusted Rack of Lamb (recipe here)
Lamb, Williams Sonoma
Image courtesy of williams-sonoma.com
Potato Fennel Gratin (recipe here)
Food Network, Barefoot contessa, Ina garten, Potato gratin
Image courtesy of foodnetwork.com
Broiled Asparagus (recipe here)
Real Simple, asparagus
Image courtesy of RealSimple.com
Almond Cake (recipe below)
almond cake
Recipe from “Kids Cook French” by Claudine Pepin

1/2 cup raw almonds
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup all purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
2 large eggs
1/4 cup whole milk
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
6 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted, plus more to butter the loaf pan
3/4 cup sliced almonds

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Butter a 9×5 inch loaf pan, about 3 inches deep
Place the almonds, sugar, flour and baking powder in a small food processor and process until smooth.  In a medium to large mixing bowl, thoroughly whisk together the eggs, milk, vanilla and melted butter.  If there are lumps, that is fine.
Add the processed almond and flour mixture to the bowl and whisk just enough to combine them and make them smooth.  Pour and scrape the batter into a loaf pan, evenly coat the top with sliced almonds and bake for 30 minutes.
Remove from the oven, allow to cool for 5 minutes, and then remove the cake from the loaf pan.  If the cake sticks, run a small paring knife around the outside of the cake.  Allow to cool for 15 minutes.  I like to drizzle with powdered sugar glaze, but that is not part of the original recipe.
Happy Easter!

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