Spring is in the air! And with Easter just around the corner, I could think of no better way to celebrate than gathering around a picnic table with loved ones to enjoy this warm shift in the weather (hopefully here to stay) and, of course, delicious food. For me, deviled eggs are synonymous with Easter. A deviled egg is the perfect finger food, not only nutritious and delicious but very versatile in regard to the filling. Not to mention, something tells me you’re going to have some extra hard-boiled eggs hanging out in the fridge. The classic version with yellow mustard and mayonnaise is sure to be a hit — but fill the eggs with barbecue sauce, hummus or mango guacamole and just wait to see the excitement and joy in people’s faces.
All Posts In Easter
Around this time of year, I wonder why I don’t make egg salad more often — it’s so good, it’s light (or at least this version is), and it’s relatively easy to make. I almost always have an excess of eggs lying around, a thankful bounty from our weekly CSA. Though my husband and I both love a fried egg sandwich for breakfast, lack of time usually forces us to have either a smoothie or quick bowl of cereal instead, creating an abundance of eggs after just a few weeks. Egg salad is the perfect way to use up excess eggs and provide a quick lunch option for days to come.
Whether you’re serving a juicy glazed ham or a stately crown roast of lamb this Easter, you can count on a filling — and most likely meaty — main dish. If you’re determined to save room for dessert, your best bet is to keep the side dishes light by showcasing fresh spring produce. Your local farmers market will likely have an ample selection of asparagus, peas, and arugula and other fresh greens at this time of year, so make the most of it while the short season lasts.
Here are a few dishes to help turn your Easter celebration into a feast of spring produce:
When you’re gluten-free, any holiday — including Easter — can be a challenge. But we’ve come up with recipes that are so good that no one will even question if they’re gluten-free or not. They’ll just be asking for seconds! A make-ahead, perfect-for-brunch breakfast casserole kicks off the day, and whether you’re making ham or lamb for the big feast, easy herbed popovers and hot cross buns will deliciously round out your Easter menu.
Among the big holidays, Easter isn’t traditionally associated with excessive eating. But any family gathering has the potential to lead to overindulging. The best strategy: Plan your menu around fresh, healthy and seasonal recipes.
With so many delicious ways to use the leftovers, you might want to make some extra ham this Easter.
Ham gives this whole-grain dish some extra protein and a salty bite.
Recipe: Barley Risotto with Ham and Mushrooms (above)
These perfectly-portioned sliders will make a brown bag lunch extra special.
Recipe: Ham Club Sandwich Sliders
With the weather warming up, and the sun peeking out just a little bit more day by day, our meals are lighter and include more fruits and veggies. For a satisfyingly fresh lunch, I’ve combined fresh spring asparagus and spinach — with nori seaweed as a surprise ingredient — into a lovely spring salad. Instead of store-bought salad dressing I use tahini for creamy flavor and texture. Lemon juice and fresh ginger add bold flavor without excess calories and fat. Slivered almonds provide filling healthy fats to keep you satisfied all afternoon. Bring this salad to an outdoor spring picnic party, or serve it as an Easter side dish. Read more
- Provencal Potato Gratin
- Light Scalloped Potatoes With Roasted Chiles
- Roasted Sweet Potatoes With Honey and Cinnamon
- Oven Roasted Red Potatoes With Rosemary and Garlic
- Fennel Potatoes
Food Safety Basics
Eggs are considered a potentially hazardous food that may cause illness if they’re not handled correctly. Raw and undercooked eggs have been associated with salmonella poisoning. Most folks infected with the salmonella bacteria develop symptoms about 12 to 72 hours after infected. Most people can recover but if symptoms are severe, hospitalization may be required especially in those with a compromised immune system (like the very young and old). Proper handling, cooking, and hand washing can prevent most of the issues.
Keeping Eggs Safe
Egg safety begins at your market and continues until the time when you reserve leftovers.
- Purchasing: Inspect egg cartons at the market. Don’t purchase cracked or dirty eggs and be sure to check the sell-by date. Eggs should always be refrigerated, even when on display.
- Storing: Be sure to get those eggs home quickly. They shouldn’t sit at room temperature longer than 2 hours—1 hour if it’s above 90 degrees. Once home, place the eggs in your refrigerator immediately.
- Preparing: When preparing eggs, wash your hands, any utensils, and surfaces that will come into contact with the eggs. If you’re not sure if the eggs are safe to eat, toss them. Once the equipment is used for the eggs, be sure to wash them with soap and warm water immediately. Don’t use them for another prep task (that’s cross-contamination!).
- Cooking: Always make sure that your eggs are safe to eat. For hard-boiled (or any cooked) eggs, you want to cook the eggs until both the white and yolk are firm. Learn how to make perfect hard-boiled eggs.
- Leftovers: Hard-boiled eggs can be stored in the refrigerator for up to 1 week. They shouldn’t be frozen.
It’s time to start planning your Easter menu and it can be challenging to accommodate relatives with special dietary requests. If cooking for a diabetic is on your to-do list, we’ve got healthy, spring-inspired recipes with 30 grams of carbohydrates (or less) per serving.
How about Easter brunch? That’ll leave you free for more family time and (hopefully) a little time to relax at the end of the day. A spread of breakfast fare, lunch dishes and some veggie-heavy sides will please everyone.