Behind Christmas, Easter has to be one of our favourite holidays of the year! It starts off with a 4-day weekend, throws in the start of Autumn and includes the likes of hot cross buns and chocolate eggs. Basically, what is not to love about the celebration?!

Coming from big families means we also know that any celebration of this kind includes an immense amount of food, so we thought we would each create an inspiration board of Easter menus based upon our pending celebration this year. Last year, Ilaria put together a fabulous collection of Easter table settings which would go beautifully with either of our menus below:

Sam’s Big Brunch

To me, brunch is the most perfect meal of the day which includes a short list of a few of my favourite things: eggs, croissants, champagne (although none for me!), cheeses, fruit and even dessert. This year my aunt, Tracy, will be hosting a big family brunch on Easter Sunday – a change from the traditional lunch we would normally do.

Hosting a brunch does mean less prep time in the kitchen (ideal if you are having a large group of people over) and less fretting over making sure the food is ready at the same time.

My contribution to Sunday’s affair will be a hot-cross bread and butter pudding. I found the recipe in this month’s TASTE magazine – and although not the most beautiful of desserts I think it will end our Easter feast off perfectly. With thanks to Sam Woulidge from this recipe, adapted from Tina Bester’s croissant variation of the pud.

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Ingredients:

                6 slightly stale hot cross buns

                125g butter, softened

                ¼ cup apricot jam

                1 tablespoon ground cinnamon

                ¼ teaspoon of ground all-spirce

                1 lemon, zested

                165g caster sugar

                4 eggs

                2 cups of milk, warmed

                Cinnamon sugar for sprinkling

Method:

  • Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
  • Slice the buns in half horizontally and spread generously with butter and jam.
  • Pack the buns snugly into an oven proof dish (greased)
  • Mix the spices, lemon zest and sugar and then beat in the eggs. Add warms milk, then pour into the mixture over the buns through a strainer.
  • Allow to stand for at least 1 hour.
  • Sprinkle with cinnamon sugar so that the top will caramelize, then bake for 30-35 minutes. Serve immediately (with lashings of thick cream or custard – yum!)

Hopefully my version of the dessert will turn out as tasty as the photo promises!

Ilaria’s Decadent Sunday Spread

As much as I adore eating out and trying new things, hearty, home-cooked food is my absolute best on a holiday like Easter. It’s comforting, delicious and traditional – personally, the start of autumn (and the slightly cooler temperatures in Jozi this week) have had me craving this type of food. I’ve put together an ideas/inspiration board for this Sunday and I am attempting to stick to it as much as possible: 

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Menu

Starters

     Roasted asparagus wrapped in parma ham

Mains

     Herb crusted and stuffed leg of lamb

     Garlic roasted carrots

     Green bean salad with mustard seeds and tarragon

     Grilled parmesan polenta chips

Dessert

     Brownies with berry sauce and crushed oreos

Wine

     Haute cabriere unwooded Pinot Noir

We hope that we have provided some delectable food inspiration for this coming long weekend. If you have any recipes that are worth mentioning, please feel free to comment on this post – we welcome any ideas! 

Happy Easter weekend to all our Spruce readers – and for those who celebrate it, a blessed and reflective period.

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