Spring is the flowering of life; Easter is true Love, true Hope, true Light.
I so remember the Easters my mom provided. It was a day all day. Up before dawn, my brother and I were shuttled off the Easter Sunrise Services on Lizard Butte, which over looks the Snake River. People from churches all over the valley came for those old hymns, "Up from the grave he arose," sung to trumpets, as the sun crested over the butte, over the river. Still gets me.
Home to homemade rolls, bacon, and orange juice, Easter egg hunts on the lawn. Chocolate bunnies. Purple eggs, Something sparkly in the morning sun.
Off to church at 10:00 A.M. for Sunday School where we learned all about resurrections. It'd take me years to realize that resurrections happen all the time. People get their lives back in powerful ways. Addictions. Cancer. Grief and sorrow. All of that can be moved along in the presence of Love, Hope, Light.
Back home for Easter Dinner with the grandparents, aunts and uncles, all those cousins, with whom we were "encouraged" to share our chocolate bunnies. That was about as successful as you might image. My mom made a monstrous ham, scalloped potatoes, homemade rolls, a wonderful green salad, apples with wine and walnuts—a nod to Passover—and always, always, strawberry shortcake with clouds of whipped cream. One year, the ham-roaster didn't roast, and I learned variations on swear words I didn't know my mom knew: Shit oh dear, Damn nabbit, Sonny bitch, for starters.
We got baby critters for Easter: Little chickens, some fluffy little rabbits, kitties, maybe a puppy. Anything that hopped in glee. Of course, you need a farm to do justice to their care and feeding, and some of that care wound up my brother's responsibility, and mine. Part of growing up. Caring for the wee ones.
But what a day for my mom. All of that cooking, all of that prep. These days we do Easter in easier fashion, Still do the Easter baskets, but dinner might be out, a thing that didn't occur to my mom. Still do the homemade rolls, but there are some short-cuts. Here is a delicious one:
Citrus Cream Cheese Rolls - from Cooking Light with adaptations
1 package of frozen roll dough - I used Rhodes Texas style — and only put 12 in a
11x14 inch pan. Spray the pan and let the rolls thaw and raise 3 - 4 hours the night before. They rise enough to fill the pan.
Add: 1/2 cup dried blueberries and/or dried apricots, 1/2 cup pecans. Sprinkle over the rolls.
Beat together: 1/4 cup melted butter, 1/2 cup sugar, 6 ounces of softened cream cheese, 2 tablespoons orange juice, 1 egg. Pour over the rolls, cover with plastic wrap and put it in the refrigerator over night.
The next morning, pull out of the refrigerator and let warm to room temperature 30 - 45 minutes before you bake them. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Just before you slide them into the oven, you can brush the tops with melted butter or an egg wash (egg whites beaten with a little water) and sprinkle with the zest of one orange and/or lemon.
Bake for 20 minutes. cover with a tent of foil, and bake five minutes more. Pull them out of the oven.
Let them cool a few minutes. Blend 1 cup of powered sugar with 2-4 tables spoons of orange juice and/or lemon juice. Glaze the rolls.
May all the Love, Hope, and Light you need be yours.