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Come Party With Me: Easter — Menu


While many people celebrate Easter over brunch, my family gathers together for a late lunch/early dinner. Since both Spring and Easter are about rebirth, serve a menu that highlights seasonal ingredients. Start with smashed peas and mint on crisp bruschetta. For the entree, offer guests a juicy leg of lamb roasted with garlic and rosemary and topped with a red wine reduction.

Traditional steamed artichokes get a modern makeover when paired with a quick tarragon mayonnaise. Luxuriously creamy scalloped potatoes with Parmesan cheese and thyme round out the rich holiday menu. To savor these dishes, get the recipes when you read more.

Smashed Peas With Mint Bruschetta

Smashed Peas With Mint Bruschetta

Smashed Peas With Mint Bruschetta

Ingredients

1/2 baguette
1 10-ounce package frozen peas, thawed
1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon black pepper

Directions

  1. Thinly slice half a baguette. Place the rounds on a baking sheet and broil them until they're golden brown (about 1 1/2 minutes per side).
  2. Process the peas in a food processor until roughly chopped. Stir in the mint, oil, salt, and pepper.
  3. Spread the mixture on the rounds. Garnish the bruschetta with fresh mint leaves, if desired.

Serves 4-6.

Leg of Lamb With Garlic and Rosemary

Leg of Lamb With Garlic and Rosemary

Leg of Lamb With Garlic and Rosemary

Ingredients

1 (7-pound) semi-boneless leg of lamb, aitchbone removed, fat trimmed to 1/4 inch thick, and lamb tied
4 garlic cloves
1 tablespoon fine sea salt
2 tablespoons chopped fresh rosemary
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1/4 cup dry red wine or beef broth

Directions

  1. Pat lamb dry and score fat by making shallow cuts all over with tip of a sharp small knife.
  2. Pound garlic to a paste with sea salt using a mortar and pestle (or mince and mash with a heavy knife) and stir together with rosemary and pepper. Put lamb in a lightly oiled roasting pan, then rub paste all over lamb. Let stand at room temperature 30 minutes.
  3. Preheat oven to 350°F.
  4. Roast lamb in middle of oven until an instant-read thermometer inserted 2 inches into thickest part of meat (do not touch bone) registers 130°F, 1 1/2 to 1 3/4 hours. Transfer to a cutting board and let stand 15 to 25 minutes (internal temperature will rise to about 140°F for medium-rare).
  5. Add wine to pan and deglaze by boiling over moderately high heat, stirring and scraping up brown bits, 1 minute. Season pan juices with salt and pepper and serve with lamb.

Serves 8.

Steamed Artichokes With Tarragon Mayonnaise

Steamed Artichokes With Tarragon Mayonnaise

Steamed Artichokes With Tarragon Mayonnaise

Ingredients

2 lemons
6 to 8 artichokes
1/4 cup water
2 cups mayonnaise
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon
3 dashes hot sauce, such as Tabasco
Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste

Directions

  1. Squeeze juice of 1 lemon into a large bowl of cold water.
  2. Trim stem of 1 artichoke flush with bottom. Snap off outer leaves. Using kitchen shears, cut off tips of remaining leaves. Place in lemon water. Repeat.
  3. Drain artichokes, and place in a pot in a single snug layer (in batches if necessary). Add 1/4 cup water. Bring to a simmer, cover, and steam until tender, about 35 minutes. Remove from pot. Let cool. Cover, and refrigerate for up to 2 hours.
  4. Meanwhile, zest and juice remaining lemon. Whisk zest, 2 tablespoons juice, the mayonnaise, tarragon, hot sauce, salt, and pepper. Serve alongside artichokes.

Serves 6 to 8.

Scalloped Potatoes

Scalloped Potatoes

Scalloped Potatoes

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups heavy cream
1 sprig fresh thyme
2 garlic cloves, chopped
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
Butter
2 pounds russet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/8-inch thick slices
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1/2 cup grated Parmesan, plus more for broiling

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
  2. In a saucepan, heat up the cream with a sprig of thyme, chopped garlic and nutmeg.
  3. While cream is heating up, butter a casserole dish. Place a layer of potato in an overlapping pattern and season with salt and pepper. Remove cream from heat, then pour a little over the potatoes. Top with some grated Parmesan. Make 2 more layers.
  4. Bake, uncovered, for 45 minutes. Sprinkle some more Parmesan and broil until cheese browns, about 5 minutes.

Serves 4-6.

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