I so wanted to get this blog posted BEFORE Easter so that you too could serve this delicious bread on your Easter table this year but things didn't quite work out the way that I had planned. Last week was super busy with 5 separate catering orders that needed to be prepared and delivered in addition to hosting our own Easter dinner for family and friends. Needless to say, this bread almost never happened, but thanks to my very helpful family members - I managed to pull it off - even if it was still baking at 11:00 on Easter eve.
This recipe came from sprinklebakes.com and believe me - it's just as delightful to eat as it is to look at. It is so pretty and it really is as good as it looks. I love that fact that the egg cooks in the oven while the bread is baking too.
Italian Easter Bread
1 1/4 cups milk
1/3 cup/76g unsalted butter
2 1/4 teaspoons instant yeast
Pinch of salt (about 1/16 teaspoon)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
1/2 cup/100g sugar
3 to 4 cups/ 408 to 544g bread flour (approximate)
1 teaspoon water
6 raw eggs, room temperature, dyed in rainbow colors
Place the dough in a greased bowl and turn it over once to coat the top. Cover with plastic wrap and allow the dough to rise in a warm place, about 1 hour.
Place the circle onto parchment lined baking sheets. Cover the loaves with plastic wrap and let rise again for 1 hour, or until doubled.
Sprinkle on the nonpareils and gently place a dyed egg in the middle of each loaf.
Bake for 20 minutes, or until the bread is golden and fragrant.
Since I didn't get this recipe posted in time for your Easter dinner, I think you could easily remove the egg and bake this bread for any festive celebration. This would be perfect for birthday dinners or with the right colored sprinkles, maybe even a 4th of July party. (Ah, the wheels are turning now.) I have a feeling that you will see modifications of this recipe in the future - perhaps with green sprinkles for St. Patrick's Day.
It was hard to stop myself from taking pictures of this beautiful ring of Easter bread. It was really pretty but that definitely didn't stop us from eating it. It was REALLY good.
Can you tell what this roll is supposed to resemble? I'm pretty sure that it was SUPPOSED to be a bunny but I think I need a little work on my dough shaping techniques. My bunny rolls didn't exactly turn out like I had seen them on budgetgourmetmom.com but I certainly had fun trying to recreate her whimsical Easter rolls.
I was intrigued not only by the shape of these fun little rolls but also by the ingredients. I had never put allspice and orange peel into a roll dough before and I wondered how that would translate into bread. Turns out - budgetgourmetmom knows exactly what she's talking about because these little rolls were really delicious. The aroma that was lofting out of my oven as these little bunnies were baking was almost too much to handle. I even toyed with not brushing on the orange glaze when they came out of the oven because they looked plenty decadent hot out of the oven. My sweet tooth got the best of me though and I had Ben brush on a simple orange glaze to finish them off which took these rolls from good to fabulous. (Let's just say that there were at least 2 bunny rolls that never even made it to the Easter table because I had to "sample" them first.)
Glazed Bunny Rolls
4 cups all-purpose flour
1 package active dry yeast
3/4 tsp ground allspice
1 1/4 cups milk
1/2 cup butter
1/3 cup sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbsp finely shredded orange peel
1/4 cup orange juice
1 1/2 cups sifted powder sugar
Turn dough onto a floured surface. Knead in enough remaining flour to make a moderately soft dough that is smooth and elastic (3 to 5 minutes total). Shape dough into a ball. Place dough in a lightly greased bowl; turn once.
Cover; let rise in a warm place until double in size (about 1 hour).
Cover and let rest 10 minutes. Lightly grease two cookie sheets. Divide each portion of this dough to 6 pieces and roll each piece into a rope about 12 inches long.
On one of the lightly greased cookie sheets, overlap one end of strip over the other to form a loop; bring the end that's underneath up over the top end, letting one end extend on each side to make ears. Pat tips of ears to shape in point. Make 5 bunnies out of each half. Divide remaining dough into 5 pieces and shape into a ball for tails.
After shaping, cover and let rise until nearly double (30 to 45 minutes).
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 375 degree F. Bake bunnies for 13 to 15 minutes or until golden brown.
Frost while warm with Orange glaze.
Does it get any cuter than these? Chocolate cupcakes with an orange buttercream carrot tucked inside!!! Seriously these are off the cuteness factor chart.
They look a little tricky to make but they're really pretty simple.
Start by baking a batch of your favorite chocolate cupcake mix. (I used my chocolate mocha cake recipe.)
Use a small knife to cut a cone out of the center of each cooled cupcake.
Dip the top of the cupcake in crushed oreos.
Tint some buttercream orange and scoop it into a pastry bag fitted with a #5 tip.
Pipe buttercream into the center of each cupcake until it fills and slightly overflows the cone shaped hole.
Tint a small amount of buttercream green and scoop it into a pastry bag fitted with a #67 tip.
Pipe leaves on top of carrots.
Who could resist a cupcake like this on Easter Sunday? I love these.
I think I might need to rename my Big Green Egg, the Big Yellow Egg - the pine pollen in Atlanta is relentless. If you've never experienced the yellow pollen that coats absolutely everything in it's path in early Spring, consider yourself lucky. The house, the porches, my car, my dog - everything is yellow!
Despite the fact that I'm seeing yellow - I am so thankful for this beautiful Spring weather. I took advantage and fired up my Big Yellow Egg last week and grilled up a Pork Tenderloin for dinner. This recipe made its appearance on our dinner table compliments of the latest edition of Taste of Home magazine.
Grilled Pork Tenderloin
3/4 cup orange juice
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup lime juice
4 garlic cloves
2 teaspoons dried oregano
1 teaspoon grated lime zest
1 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper
2 pork tenderloins
2 small zucchini
2 small carrots
1/2 yellow bell pepper
1/4 cup cherry tomatoes
drizzle of oil
salt and pepper
While the pork rests, prepare the vegetables. I sliced my veggies on a mandolin to get them nice and thin. Then I went to my herb pot and cut some fresh herbs. I added them to my veggies along with a drizzle of oil and some salt and pepper.
I put the vegetables in a grill basket on the hot grill for about 10 minutes until they were charred but still crispy.
Once the vegetables are done, slice the pork thinly or in thick slices - whichever you prefer.
Serve the veggies and pork with a side of basmati rice and voila - a delicious meal.
We all really enjoyed this meal. The pork was really flavorful and the vegetables were extraordinary. I can hardly wait until I can start picking vegetables from my own garden to grill. Anyone else ready for fresh summer produce already?
Those of you who are restricted to a dairy free or lactose free diet - this recipe is for you. It's a perfectly delicious, wonderfully sweet and delightfully crunchy dessert that is entirely gluten free, and dairy free.
First of all let me say to all of you who are gluten or dairy free, my hat is off to you. I never realized just how difficult it was to avoid these foods until I started to prepare them for clients. It is much more difficult than I realized to completely eliminate gluten and dairy from our American diet. I truly admire the dedication of those individuals who are able to maintain these diets. You deserve a reward - a dessert reward. A truly delicious, spectacular, wonderfully fabulous dessert that will make you forget that you're depriving yourself of anything.
I had to piece this recipe together from several different sources. (Like I said earlier, it's harder than I thought to find gluten and dairy free desserts.) The crust came from againstallgrain.com and the filling is simply a whipped coconut cream. The result was a beautiful little berry tart that EVERYONE can enjoy.
3/4 cup pecans
1 1/5 cups almond meal (or almond flour)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon baking soda
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3 Tablespoons coconut oil
2 Tablespoons honey
1 can coconut cream
2 Tablespoons honey
Bake 10 minutes at 350. Remove foil with coins and bake another 10 minutes.
Place on a cake pedestal.
This is so good - I could eat it by the spoonful. If you can resist the temptation to eat it all, scoop it into the baked tart crust.
Top with fresh fruit of your choice.
Yum! Dairy and gluten free really CAN be delicious.
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