easter egg hunt

In one of the books that I read to Remy, Happy Easter, Little Critter, all of the church-going critter children have an Easter egg hunt in a field. I loved that idea so much, so I decided to have one of our own!

I bought the cutest baskets from Michael’s, eggs from Dollarama, and made them bunny ear floral crowns. Then I waited for a warm day. I told them that the Easter bunny would be coming twice this year- once to do an egg hunt in the field, and once when it was really Easter. They were just so, so, so excited. It was the sweetest thing!

The Easter bunny left them baskets and a sign outside …

then laid out the eggs in the field …

and off we went to find them.

This will now be a yearly tradition for us. I can’t express enough how much joy it brought to everyone. The neighbour even joined in!

Have a hoppy Easter, everyone!

Emory

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recipe: braided easter bread

Traditionally, Easter bread is a sweetened loaf that has been served for many centuries. This one in particular is modified from a traditional Italian loaf. After combining a few recipes that I found online, I made this loaf twice and settled on the one where I had the best results. I altered the steps, added and took away some ingredients, and didn’t add dyed eggs to it. It is a soft and sweet loaf that can really be served anytime during the year! It is paired best with light or sweet toppings (such as butter or jam).

Braided Easter Bread

Ingredients:

2/3 cup granulated sugar
1 1/2 tbsp active dry yeast
1 1/2 cup warm milk
1/2 cup butter, plus more to grease
1 tsp salt
1 tsp vinegar
2 large eggs
1 tsp vanilla
6 cups all-purpose flour

Steps:

1. In a large bowl, combine the sugar, yeast, and warm milk. Mix and cover with a damp tea towel for 15 minutes. Mixture should be bubbly.

2. Add warm butter, salt, vinegar, eggs, and vanilla. Beat over medium for 1 minute. Add flour 1 cup at a time. Use approximately 6 cups or until dough is slightly firm and no longer sticky to the touch. Move to a floured surface and knead by hand for 5 minutes. Transfer to a greased bowl, cover with a damp tea towel, and let rise for 1 hour.

3. Punch down the dough. Separate into three and let stand on a floured surface. Roll out each one into a rope 1” thick. Put each rope side by side, and pinch the top ends together. Gently braid, then form into a ring.

4. Preheat oven to 400°F. Grease a cookie sheet or 8” cake pan and gently place the ring on top. Butter the ring, then cover with a tea towel and let rise for 30 minutes.

5. Place ring in oven and bake for 25 minutes, or until golden brown. Remove and brush with more butter. Let cool slightly before serving. Can be stored in an airtight container up to 3 days, or frozen up to 3 months.

Emory

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recipe: checkered cookies

This recipe was largely inspired by the Checkerboard Cookies found in the recipe book “Fika.” The recipes in it are so simple, delicate, and tasty, I thought that using one to serve at Easter (and beyond) would be a nice treat. 

Checkered Cookies

Makes 2 dozen

Ingredients:

1 cup butter, softened
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp lemon juice
2 cups all-purpose flour
2 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder

Steps:

1. In a medium bowl, combine the butter, sugar, vanilla extract, lemon juice, and flour. Mix well and form into a soft dough.

2. Separate into two pieces, placing one in another bowl. Sprinkle cocoa powder over one half of the dough. Mix well.

3. Divide the light and dark doughs into two pieces each- making four in total. Form each piece into a log approximately 1 inch in diameter. Carefully place one light log next to a dark one. Then place one dark log on top of a light one, and the remaining light log on top of the dark one. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

4. Preheat oven to 350°F. Remove dough from fridge and wrap and cut into approximately 24 equal pieces. Put cookies onto a non-stick cookie sheet and bake for 10 minutes. Let cool before removing from sheet.

Emory

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recipe: carrot dill soup

I originally made a similar recipe years ago when I was working at a cafe and the chef was known for his amazing Carrot Soup. Then when I was needing a Easter-inspired recipe for the magazine that I write for, I thought what food is more fitting than carrots? I just had to recreate this soup, this time with a vegan twist.

This recipe is dairy-free, but it doesn’t have to be! Simply substitute milk products for the almond milk. It is an easy and versatile soup.

Carrot Dill Soup

Ingredients:

4 tbsp oil, any kind
3 cloves garlic, chopped
1/2 yellow onion, chopped
8 large carrots, peeled and chopped
3 1/2 cups vegetable stock
1 cup almond milk
2 tbsp fresh dill (or 2 tsp dried dill)

Steps:

1. In a large pot, heat oil over medium. Add garlic and onions, and cook for 5 minutes or so. Meanwhile, prepare the carrots. Throw them in as well. Finally, add the vegetable stock, almond milk, and dill to the pot. Continue to cook over medium heat for another 25-30 minutes.

2. Once the vegetables are cooked through, remove from heat and let cool slightly. Blend the soup in a food processor or blender. Serve immediately as is, or top with sour cream and dill. Can be refrigerated up to a few days or frozen up to 3 months.

Emory

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recipe: lovely marble cupcakes

This Valentine’s Day, I have prepared three separate recipes that can be combined into one delicious meal for you and your loved one(s)! They are the deeply red and delicious Borscht Soup, healthy Soda Heart Bread, and these lovely and sweet Marble Cupcakes.

You can choose to make all three, or only two, or just one. Or none. ;-)))

Regardless, each recipe is packed full of flavour, warmth, and of course, love. Happy Valentine’s Day!

Lovely Marble Cupcakes

Makes 12

Ingredients:

(For the cupcakes)

1 cup butter, room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
2 egg whites
1 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder
1 tbsp milk

(For the frosting)

1 1/2 cups icing sugar
2 tbsp butter
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
1/2 tsp lemon juice
6 tbsp milk (more or less, depending on desired consistency)
Sprinkles, optional

Steps:

1. Preheat oven to 350°F and line 12 muffin cups with liners. In a medium bowl, beat together the butter, sugar, and egg whites until they are smooth and fluffy. Add the vanilla extract and lemon juice. Sift in the flour, then add the baking powder, stirring until completely combined. Set aside.

2. In another bowl, mix the cocoa powder and milk together. Then fold in half of the cupcake batter, stirring until it becomes a smooth chocolatey mixture. 

3. Using a teaspoon, add a heaping spoonful of vanilla batter to each muffin cup. Use another spoon for the chocolate, and repeat until all of the batter is gone and all of the cups are even. (They should be nearly half full.) Take a toothpick and swirl each cup around a couple of times. Then place in oven and bake for approximately 20 minutes or until a toothpick comes out clean.

4. Meanwhile, prepare the icing. Once the muffins have cooled, spread icing over each one. Using a cake decorating kit will yield the prettiest results. Top with sprinkles, if so desired! Finish off your Valentine’s Day- or any- meal with these beautiful, lovely cupcakes!

<3<3

Emory

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