Easter held a great charm for me when I was a child. It still does, though I’m no longer hunting for those hidden pink Easter eggs that were so exciting to find when I was 5 and 6 years old.
This was in the late 1920s, when everyone in our neighborhood watched their pennies. Our pink Easter eggs were colored in beet juice, and the pink eggs (shells removed) would often be the centerpiece, piled on a bed of lettuce, for the Easter dinner. Baked ham, candied pineapple, yams, frozen peas and cake were the ritual meal.
My Italian grandmother and mother loved frozen peas, and when they first tasted this exciting new product, my grandmother said, “I’ll never have to shell another pea.” My mother said, “Frozen peas are greener than God made them.”
If you would like to celebrate Easter around your own table, invite your family or friends to share a late brunch. Featherbed Eggs and slices of ham, and a bowl of freshly sliced fruit make a very simple but pleasing Easter celebration.
Featherbed Eggs must be made the night before you plan to bake and serve it, so you have no last-minute preparations if you prepare the fruit early, and have cold slices of ham, or warm the slices while finishing the Featherbed Eggs in the oven.
Cunningham’s newest book is “Learning to Cook With Marion Cunningham” (Alfred A. Knopf, 1999).