Wanna know something?
Caspari paper products make me happy — particularly their holiday themed hankies. When I noticed that they had Easter options at the grocery store today, I got giddy… and bought some.
Wanna know something else?
I prefer Easter to Christmas.
There. I said it. That probably sounds whacked, but whatever. I don’t care.
It all started in 2002….
It was my first Easter in Los Angeles, and my first Easter away from home. I didn’t have actual biological family to celebrate with, so my roommate and I decided to throw a family dinner for our friends.
We both gave stuff up for Lent and couldn’t wait to let loose when it was over. She gave up chocolate, but I swear I suffered more because I gave up alcohol AND went to Vegas with her for St. Patrick’s Day. I’m not even kidding. It was my first time EVER in Vegas, and I didn’t have a drop of anything — not even communion wine — even though St. Paddy’s fell on a Sunday that year.
For 24 hours I watched all of America chain smoke, binge drink, and gamble away their 401Ks — sober. On a stool. I felt like an anthropologist studying monkeys that were flinging poo at the zoo. If I’m being honest with you, I think the hardest part of the trip may have been surviving the sheets at the Stratosphere stone. cold. sober.
Anyway… I digress.
Family dinners! That’s where I was. We decided to throw one for our friends because we were away from our own families, and that dinner marked the beginning of a beautiful tradition celebrating the friends who have become family. It’s a tradition I love. Deeply.
BTW.. and just for the record… I know the season is not entirely about the end of my suffering because nothing I give up could ever come close to the sacrifice that we celebrate this time of year, so I really look at it as a celebration of my amazing friendships and a chance for new beginnings for all of us. ❤
Since I’m trying to keep my philosophizing to a minimum on this blog, you can find more of my thoughts on Easter/religion/life/death/sex/and/basically everything in between on my other blog here.
Back to Easter dinner…
Over the years the menu and the venue has has gone through many iterations, but the one thing that has remained constant is that I make a lot of food as a way of saying, “I super like you. Want me to show you how much by force-feeding you pig products?”
This year my friend Nicole and I are talking about doing a traditional spread with a spiral ham, my fennel scalloped potatoes, and her darling lamb-shaped butter! It’s all still TBD, but it’s never too early to get excited about eating PIG!
Since ham can be salty and heavy, I want to have some light, fresh dishes to accompany it. I recently made a fresh pea soup with mint, and I’ve been thinking it might be a fun, fresh addition to the menu this year.
I don’t love peas by themselves, but for some reason I SUPER LOVE them in this soup.
Here’s the recipe, just in case you want to get into it….
Minty Pea Soup
3 T unsalted butter (it’s also good with 3 T coconut oil)
1 medium onion, chopped
2 16-oz packages of frozen peas
4-6 C of chicken broth
1/2 C of mint
Salt and pepper to taste
Melt butter. Cook onions until tender but do not allow them to brown. (About 6-8 minutes.) Add 2 C of broth. Bring to a boil. Lower to a simmer. Add peas. Cook until soft, about 4 minutes. Remove from heat. Add mint and puree with remaining broth. Add broth by 1/2 C to achieve desired consistency. (I recommend an immersion blender for this.)
Salt and pepper to taste. Can be served hot or cold. I add extra mint for garnish.
It’s based on this Bon Appetit recipe from Epicurious, which is also very good. My version is more Paleo-friendly.
OK, I’m off to finish my script. My long lost Melissa is back in LA, and I owe her my fourth draft. It’s kinda sorta done. I just need to read through it a few times to do some polishing for her.