Well Easter is over for another year. I like Easter since there isn't a lot of craziness (in my family anyway) to buy gifts and to decorate and to bake months in advance! I do things simply at Easter. A few decorations on the table, dry sink or buffet.
|Knitted Easter Egg Pattern|
We had our Easter dinner yesterday, with just my little family of four. We did a delicious roast beef with vegetables in the crock pot and a loaf of rosemary bread ... actually my husband did the main meal. My son and I baked Hot Cross Buns on Saturday for Sunday's breakfast. They turned out really well (recipe at the end of this post). I love Hot Cross Buns, but have only made them once before. My mother made them every year and shared them with us, so there was no need for me to bake them until she passed away. It was good to taste that familiar spicy bun once more :) The lemon squares were made on Saturday as well, and they were a hit. The recipe does make a lot, however, so now we're stuck with a lot of lemon squares ... terrible, right? I sent some back with my daughter, but that pan is in the fridge staring back at me every time I open the door :[
I didn't hear from any of my other family this year, although I did see dear ol' Dad on Saturday for a visit in the morning. His memory was on a one-minute loop that day. Conversation was difficult with the repeating questions. I finally brought out a couple of photo albums to look through with him. He gobbled up the pictures eagerly, as we strolled down "non-memory" lane. The only people he remembers now are his own mother and father. I had to repeatedly tell him they had died many years ago. It's bad enough to have to break the news to him that his parents are dead once in a visit. On Saturday I had to break the news to him about ten times! He took it rather well, but was surprised at the news every time, "Oh, I didn't know they had died". Ever see the movie "50 First Dates"? It was like that. I love that movie. It makes the whole dementia thing a little lighter to bear without demeaning people who have it.
We drove my daughter back home yesterday after our early supper. There's still snow in the woods alongside the highway there. It was a gorgeous day yesterday, and I was able to have the patio door opened a crack while our roast cooked. It was nice to hear the birds singing all day :) Today started off with a thunderstorm really early (before I got up). Now it's raining steadily.
I've written out the recipe for the hot cross buns here if you're interested. I realize it's a bit moot to post this recipe after Easter, but maybe you'll keep the recipe for next year. I've not made bread very often, and found this recipe quite easy. We couldn't get candied peel at our grocery store (?!), and then we forgot to buy the raisins. My son and I opened up the pantry cupboard to look for raisins, and saw the box of Raisin Bran cereal sitting there. We looked at each other and silently agreed that we would steal those raisins ... and we did! Thank goodness for those "two scoops of raisins"!! Here's hoping you're better prepared if you make these.
HOT CROSS BUNS
4 cups all-purpose flour
8 g pkg quick-rise instant yeast (I used Fleischmann's)
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1/4 tsp cloves or allspice
1/4 tsp nutmeg
1/2 cup raisins (steal them from your favourite cereal if none on hand)
grated rind of 1 lemon
1/4 cup chopped candied peel
1/4 cup water
1 cup milk
1/4 cup butter
1 egg yolk
1 tbsp water
1/2 cup icing sugar
1 - 2 tbsp lemon juice
Set aside 1 cup flour.
In large bowl, combine remaining flour, undissolved yeast, sugar, salt, cinnamon, cloves, nutmeg, raisins, lemon rind and candied peel.
In small saucepan, heat water, milk and butter until very warm to touch (120 - 130F). With wooden spoon, gradually stir into dry ingredients. Mix in egg; beat mixture smooth. Stir in enough of remaining flour to make a soft dough that pulls away from side of bowl. Turn on to floured surface, knead dough five to seven minutes until dough is smooth and elastic, adding more flour if dough is too sticky. Cover with tea towel; stand 10 minutes.
Divide dough into 12 equal pieces, Stretch and shape each piece into a smooth ball, pinching at bottom to seal. Place seam-side down on greased baking sheets about two inches apart. Cut crosses in each bun with sharp knife. Cover with tea towel and put in warm place. Let rise 35 - 45 minutes or until doubled in size.
Mix egg yolk with water, brush over surface of buns. Bake in preheated 375F oven 15 - 18 minutes, until golden brown. Cool.
In small bowl, combine icing sugar and enough lemon juice to make a good consistency to drizzle. Beat until smooth. Brush or drizzle icing on top of each bun (I used a decorating tool).
Makes 12 hot cross buns.
Thanks for stopping by today :)