Thursday, April 21, 2011

Tantalizing Thursday

Welcome back in to Tantalizing Thursday at Chief 187 Chatter. Today is the second of a two-part Easter edition. Last week the ever-popular deviled egg was featured. Today the focus will be on the main meal. As I’ve revealed before, I am far better a meal planner than executor so I’ll be offering menus. The recipes and preparation methods can be found in your home recipe books or online at any of the myriad sites that are available. Sometimes the hardest part of entertaining is deciding what to make. Hopefully these suggestions will help.

Traditionally a large meal served at either mid-day or early evening marks many Easter celebrations. The easiest is to serve a large main dish with a few special side dishes and an ordinary meal becomes holiday-worthy.

Ham is a fantastic Easter dinner. Ham is relatively easy to prepare, feeds many, is usually liked by children, and is versatile when leftovers populate the fridge. I recommend serving ham, prepared according to package for heating/glazing instructions. Side dishes should vary from what you might have served at Christmastime. Asparagus is a great spring vegetable. Served steamed or smothered in Hollandaise sauce, asparagus heralds the beginning of spring. And even though swimsuit season is upon us, a cheesy potato side dish is divine with this meal. Want to cut some of the starch but keep the cheesy integrity? Substitute a head of steamed cauliflower for the potatoes and add cheese! Once again forgoing calorie-counting, pick up some biscuits or make your own and have those to serve with the ham; perfect leftovers for ham biscuits the next morning! Rethink salad and make fabulous coleslaw. Buy bagged slaw mix, a refrigerated jarred dressing, add blue cheese (or feta) crumbles and toss with a shake of celery seed. The secret is to not make the slaw too wet.

Lamb is another fine main meal to make for Easter supper. Find a simple yet pleasing recipe and make according to directions. Roasts are ideal, but if you are having a smaller gathering lamb chops are wonderful on the grill. Make sure the lamb is not overcooked so the meat is juicy. Serve mashed potatoes and carrots, mixed together, as a scrumptious side dish. Once again consider using fresh asparagus spears as a side as well. Perhaps baked tomatoes stuffed with cheese and topped with breadcrumbs and broiled would accompany this meal fittingly.

Turkey or chicken is another great choice for a holiday meal. Sweet potato casserole is fantastic or mixing the mashed potato and carrots is a good option here. String beans, steamed, are wonderful to green up the plate. Recreating Thanksgiving is not the goal with this meal; lighten up the amount of side dishes and take help with fresh ingredients whenever possible. Spring is about freshness. If fresh berries are readily available, sprinkle some in a whole berry cranberry sauce and mix. The cranberries look homemade with the addition of fresh fruit and even those who tend not to like cranberry sauce love this relish!

For you lucky people who have Italian food for each holiday, you certainly don’t need my advice. I just envy you all your pasta courses, seafood spreads, and bottomless glass of wine! Cheers to you all!

Whatever you make for Easter, I wish you all the most glorious of times spent with loved ones. The meal, of course, is not what gets remembered so much as the laughter, sweet faces, and good feelings that prevailed. Here’s hoping your weather is mild, sunny, and welcoming, your food is tantalizingly scrumptious and full of fresh, colorful ingredients, and your conversation lively and invigorating.


  1. that all sounds yummy! i ♥ asparagus... i lived 30 minutes away from Stockton, CA who held the annual asparagus festival last weekend. ;)

    Easter dinners hold a special place in my heart. My grandfather loved to cook, (hence the importance I place on the Thanksgiving stuffing). For Easter dinner we would normally have butterflied baby rack of lamb, slow cooked on the grill. Honestly, I don't remember much else of Easter dinner... probably because I was so full of candy by the time the cooking process was done!

    Happy Easter 187 Family!

  2. Baked lamb chops and Asparagus smothered in Hollandaise sauce it is. Thanks

  3. Jr. Cracker, I've missed you! Thanks for stopping by! Yes, your menu sounds scrumptious! What time shall we be over? I'll bring the Reese's Peanut Butter Eggs and the Cadbury Creme Eggs!

  4. You can send any leftovers to me. I will pay for the 'Next Day' postage.