You deserve a delicious Easter dinner. Better yet, make it a healthy Easter meal that the whole family will love. This spring holiday should be a time for feast and family.
Easter has become synonymous with eggs, as symbols of re-birth; chocolate eggs hidden in all alcoves and ledges of the garden! As a starter for your Easter dinner choose 4 hard-boiled eggs. Don’t let the yolk frighten you, one good yolk from time to time will provide important protein in the diet. Toss a handful of lettuce or arugula with a little balsamic vinegar, olive oil, salt and pepper. Dice ham and avocado and throw into the salad with a few homemade croutons. Mix all ingredients before carefully plating. Serve with sprinkles of chopped hard-boiled egg. If you have watercress growing in the garden, this would add a colorful edible addition.
Lamb is a traditional Easter favourite that does not have to be greasy or globbed with heavy gravy. Choose a lean leg of lamb that has been trimmed of fat and cut it into 1-inch cubes. Prepare a marinade of paprika, cumin, and fennel seeds. Skewer the lamb alternately with slices of bell pepper, onion and chunks of orange (keep the rind on). Season the completed skewers with salt, pepper and a drizzle of olive oil. Prepare the barbeque before starting the wild rice pilaf. While the rice is cooking, sauté finely diced shallot with garlic. Toss into the drained rice. Season and add enough Greek yogurt to create texture that resembles risotto. Sprinkle with chopped mint. Lamb should now be grilling with a nice sear on the outside while lightly pink and juicy in the middle. Serve Lamb and rice with sugar snap peas, cooked al dente.
Hot Cross Buns
What is more traditional at Easter time than a hot cross bun? Staying with the healthy theme make muffin-tin-sized tarts with pastry strips on top to represent a cross. Roll out the pastry and bake blind in the oven until cooked. Allow the tarts to cool then remove from the pan. Bake several small strips of pastry to use as the crosses on top. Fill the tarts with a dessert spoon of lightly sweetened ricotta cheese and a mélange of mixed berries. Don’t forget the cross and a sprig of fresh mint to signify the return of spring.
If you missed Mardi Gras (Fat Tuesday), the day of fattening up before Lent also known as Shrove Tuesday or pancake Tuesday, you could end your meal with a light crepe dusted with powdered sugar and sprinkled with fresh lime!
Although retails stores want us to believe that Easter is about the Easter bunny, one more reason to buy candy for the kids, remind yourself what Easter is really about. Whether you are extremely religious or think of it as an awakening following a long winter, make sure you enjoy yourself!
The Health Local Staff is a team of writers and experts dedicated to bringing you the latest health, nutrition and lifestyle information at www.healthlocal.ca.