From a culinary point of view, my Easter weekend was a spicy one. It started out with Hot Cross Buns on Good Friday, which included orange zest, cloves, cardamom, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger. I used Nigella’s recipe. They were yummy, but I need a lot more practice when it comes to forming the crosses on the top. Hot splodge buns would be a much more accurate description.
Coincidentally, I used some of the same flavours in the main course for Easter Sunday – Turkish Lamb Pilaf from Meat Feasts by the Hairy Bikers. I wanted to try out something a bit different to a roast dinner, but that would still be a celebratory meal. I’d never made a pilaf before, so this was a bit of an adventure. It basically involved making an intensely flavoured stew with lamb, stock, peppercorns, allspice, cloves, cinnamon and saffron. Once the meat is tender, you drain the juices and use them as the cooking liquid for the pilaf. Dill and pine nuts are added near the end. This makes for a really richly-flavoured dish that was great for a special treat. I learned a new technique, cooked with saffron for the first time, and got to play with my pestle and mortar.
I should, however, mention that the weekend wasn’t entirely about sophisticated spicing and complicated techniques. I also made this simple and very addictive Easter Cookie Cake from Glasgow Food Geek. I substituted the creme eggs for Oreo chocolate eggs, which was a very good decision. It was a great taste of sweet, nostalgic indulgence.