Monday, April 1, 2013

Recipe Review: Easter Dinner for Two

   Handsome and I decided to do things a bit differently for Easter this year. Except for the hour or so we spent at a morning church service, we spread ourselves out here at the farm, enjoying the sunshine and animals, luxuriating in the abundant peace and love we have been building lately. We really needed the emotional cocoon, the deep drink of stillness that these long, slow days provide us. And thankfully the weather cooperated. Temperatures near eighty degrees, light breezes, and sunshine the color of melted butter... It was all pretty magical. A sparkling, happy Easter for sure!

   Instead of joining up for a big family feast with either of our clans, whom we love deeply, for this one quick little springtime holiday my guy and I sneakily opted for a singular romantic meal. It was wonderful and delicious. I built the menu from a collection of ideas found around the internet, and in case you're interested I am gonna offer some recipe reviews. Ready? Okay.


Cinnamon-Buttermilk Scones
   First, before church, I made us a batch of thick, tender, sweet, crunchy-on-the-top scones. The recipe can be found right here on the Money Saving Mom site. It came together pretty quickly and was fun to make. The only thing I did to stray from the instructions was to skip the vanilla glaze post-bake, because Handsome and I just like it better that way. Served with hot, sweet, creamy coffee, scones with icing would have been too sweet for us. Anyway, this recipe will be a repeater for sure, on special weekends. Really simple and sensual, with so much mixing and touching of the silky, honey-scented dough, and using turbinado (raw brown sugar) and egg white as a crunchy topping felt super fancy. Loved it.

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   Now... After church I kicked off my high heels, shoved my hair up into a disorganized heap on the back of my head, and wrapped myself up in an apron. For the next couple of hours I had such fun preparing our meal... And Handsome frequently popped in to say hello, lead me out to see what the llamas were doing, and generally flirt with me.

   Oh, did you not hear that we are now a multi-llama family?


You know Romulus, the male in the back here.
His new pasture mate is Seraphine. 

   Yep. More on that later. For now, here is some review of our afternoon meal:

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Balsamic-Garlic Crusted Pork Loin
   The main course of pork loin was a recipe from Kitchen Confidante. You can find the full recipe right here. I made a half recipe, which served us both twice and also provided some leftovers. The flavors are sweet and savory and just a little bit sticky. I enjoyed using my cast iron skillet in a new way. Handsome and I agreed this is a repeat performer, so anytime I see those individually packaged pork loins on sale I will be stocking up. Because you always have the ingredients for this glaze in the pantry. Really simple and good.

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Katie's Scalloped Yams
   The potato dish was borrowed from my friend Katie, who is a fellow Oklahoman blogging over at Dishin & Dishes (I have her listed over there on my sidebar...). She is so fun and talented, and I love her approach to family life and romance. She cooks passionately and just released her first book too, wahoo!!



   You can purchase Food Lovers' Guide to Oklahoma locally or check out the tab on her blog. Very cool! Anyway, Katie recently offered up this gorgeous recipe for scalloped sweet potatoes. I love it!! I was obligated to make two tiny changes for our use, which were:

  1. to not peel the fresh yams (I like to keep skins on all of my fruits and veggies, because I am a vitamin junkie
  2. and to omit the chopped onions because Handsome has a serious food allergy to them. To compensate for the flavor loss, I punched up the fresh garlic a little and added a few scrapes of nutmeg. 
   Katie, thank you for this recipe!! It was so very good. I can't wait to make it again, especially once our fresh herbs have grown lush. I had to use dried store-bought herbs this time. Also, Handsome asked if I would also make it with white potatoes. Yum.

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Sour Cream 7-Up Biscuits
   The biscuits we enjoyed can be found in recipe form right here on a Mississippi blog called Deep South Dish. These things are sweet, soft, and pillowy... Definitely the temptresses of biscuitry. Be warned, if you are on a carb-restricted diet, these will be your ruin. They almost made me cry a little bit, they were so gentle and flavorful to my mouth. After our meal I took two giant biscuits outside to crumble up for the yard birds, and I swear one of the hens passed out in pure bliss. She's fine now. And she's been asking for more Sour Cream 7-Up biscuits ever since.

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   The vegetables were simple. We just ate steamed fresh broccoli and a crisp green salad including two lettuces, spinach, and strawberries. And of course we drank fresh iced tea that was sweet enough for a hummingbird.
   I did not make a single solitary Easter dessert this year, though my eyes had found a thousand pretty options, because clearly we had enjoyed plenty of sweets and starches already. And Handsome was still working hard on a big Easter basket full of chocolates.

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   So that's it! We are both still stuffed today, though that has not kept me from eating hard-boiled farm eggs and fruits and veggies all day long. And maybe one more soft, sweet biscuit. And maybe half of one scone. Or three.

   I hope you had a lovely Easter weekend and are enjoying this grand new week!

"Nothing would be more tiresome that eating and drinking
if God had not made them a pleasure
as well as a necessity."
~Voltaire
xoxoxoxo



 

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