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Monthly Archives: March 2013

Easter Bread

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Easter, it happens once a year. Once a year I take a day to do nothing but bake Easter bread. This tradition of mine has only occurred for about the past 5 years since that’s when I took over the tradition from my grandmother, the beautiful woman who taught me how to make Easter bread.

We’ve had Easter bread at our holiday table for as long as I can remember. It was a tradition that my Grandma Grace baked the bread every year and every year we looked forward to it. One of the years I was in high school I took a trip down to my grandparent’s house for the weekend before Easter. It was a common occurrence that when I spent time at my grandparents my Grandma and I would take on a project either in the sewing room or the kitchen. This weekend in particular my Grandma taught me how to make Easter bread.

I remember that weekend being excited to learn how to make something that was so important to our Easter table. I went in prepared to look at a recipe and follow directions but that’s not exactly what happened. No, Grandma didn’t have a recipe. There was a scratch piece of paper with a few notes and then the rest was in her head. I couldn’t believe it, this recipe came out perfect every time straight from her memory. After baking a beautiful loaf and filling the house with the wonderful scent I asked my grandma if we could go sit at the computer. I asked her to recall the ingredients and the steps we had just followed so I could type them up, allowing me to have a her perfect recipe.

The next year it was my turn to bake the bread. I can remember my grandparents stayed in Florida that year for Easter and between every step I called Grandma to ensure I was doing it right. At the end I took a picture of the loaf and emailed it to her. She was so proud.

I know I often post my recipes or sources for my recipes here but this is not one I can share. Not only is it a recipe I’m going to keep in the family but one that would still be incomplete typed up. The recipe reads “1 cup flour” but next to that in my own markings that I’ve written over the past few years reads “6 cups flour, adding when needed”.

I might not have the recipe set to memory just yet but I’m sure that by the time I pass this recipe down in the family I too won’t need it written. Until then I’m so happy I can make Easter bread for my family’s Easter table knowing Grandma is with me every time I bake it.

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Three small loaves ready to be baked! Don’t be fooled by the colored eggs thinking they’re hard boiled! They are raw and cook in the oven with the bread.

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Three large and three small loaves all baked. But what’s Easter bread without some icing? Incomplete!

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All done! Bread for our Easter table and for sharing!

The Spirit of Spring

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When I think of spring I think of warmer weather, frequent rain, and new growth. Yup, I’m a Biology major, my first thoughts are the on-goings outside my window, new plants and baby animals. So in the spirit of the season I made spring/ Easter cupcakes this past weekend.

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The cake itself is a butter/almond cake recipe. This recipe has quickly become my favorite type of cupcake and for a chocolate girl like me that’s a big deal. I use the recipe from the Wilton website: http://www.wilton.com/recipe/Butter-Cupcakes. Seriously amazing cupcakes!!!

The decoration is simply whipped cream frosting topped with toasted coconut and then three chocolate eggs on top. I gotta say  the coconut complimented the cake so well that this cupcake was in a beautiful harmony.

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Italian Wedding Cake

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Yesterday was my parents anniversary and of course I used the occasion to bake them a cake! I could have made chocolate for my Mom and vanilla for my Dad, the kinds of cakes they prefer, but instead I made something completely different. I’d heard about Italian wedding cake before and didn’t know much about it so I took to the internet. I found a Sandra Lee recipe and decided to use that since it meant an easier recipe (semi-homemade).

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/sandra-lee/italian-wedding-cake-recipe/index.html

I used this recipe but made a few minor changes. Instead of an 8inch round I used 9 inch rounds which meant I did not cut them in half but left it as a two layer cake. If you make this cake and want to make it four layers I suggest buying an extra can of frosting, even two layers was stretching it with only two cans.

The cake was delicious! I’m not a fan of pineapple but I have to admit that it wasn’t too bad in this cake, just gave it a fresh flavor. I topped the cake with some toasted coconut for added color.

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Irish Soda Bread!

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Now that we are around mid March it’s officially acceptable to begin baking Irish Soda Bread. Last weekend, specifically on a snow day, my friends and I got to baking. Though I’m not a fan of raisins we made the first one a classic batch of Irish Soda bread with all the fixings.

The second batch of bread we split into two loaves, one plain and the other with chocolate chips. My favorite loaf is definitely the one with chocolate chips, makes this sweet bread even sweeter.

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