Spring's arrival also heralds religious observances, Easter, Passover, Orthodox Easter, in recognition of Christ's resurrection. Coming off a season of Lent with its dietary restrictions is much anticipated. Cloverfields Farm & Kitchen's Janine Washle says breads have particular significance and hold a revered place at the dining table.
Many sweet celebratory breads were baked in pagan times. When countries were converted, the church would make the pagan observances part of the religious rituals. These breads were part of the agrarian heralding of Spring marking the start of planting season and the end of Winter's darkness.
To this day, breads such as Greek Tsoureki and Russian Kulich have very specific steps that must be followed to ensure a light tasty bread. If the yeast bread is less than light and delicious, it is thought that an evil spirit was in the kitchen.
Even those not observing a religious celebration welcome Spring and its sense of newness. Most of us are anxious to put away winter gear in favor of sandals, shorts, even the lawnmower. Along with all this shedding comes the putting away of those heavy winter recipes in favor of lighter fare.
Greek culture welcomes Easter with a lovely meal much anticipated after a season of Lent. The fresh flavors of lamb, artichokes, citrus, and herbs are a nice change from winter's root vegetables and meaty stews. A traditional Easter menu typically features roasted or grilled lamb, lots of fresh lightly prepared vegetables, and creamy fruit-topped desserts. This Greek menu has all of that with a little Southern flair:
Dolmas stuffed with pimento, pecans and rice, honey roasted leg of lamb, fresh Greek-inspired sides, and a lovely orange custard cake.
Paskha (Russian sweet dessert cheese)
Much like cheesecake without the crust.
1 TB vanilla
1 cup unsalted butter, room temperature
1 8 oz pkg cream cheese, room temperature
16 oz whole milk ricotta, room temperature
2 egg yolks from hard boiled eggs
½-3/4 cup granulated sugar
2 TB orange zest
Beat all until blended. Line deep mold/flowerpot (make sure mold has drainage) with 2 layers of dampened cheesecloth. Spoon in mixture and pack down very well. Set on a rack in a rimmed dish and refrigerate at least 1 hour (may not hold its' shape) up to 4 days. Unmold remove cloth and serve with Kulich.
FREE RECIPE BOOKLET:
Cloverfields Farm and Kitchen also has a special Easter Recipe Booklet available by email. To ask for a complimentary copy, just email Janine Washle at firstname.lastname@example.org
To find Cloverfields Farm & Kitchen on Facebook: CLICK HERE.
CloverFields Farm & Kitchen
Hardin Springs Area
Big Clifty, KY 42712
Janine Washle and her family live at the Cloverfields Farm and Kitchen in Big Clifty, Kentucky in Hardin County. CloverFields Farm & Kitchen, part of a century old farmstead, is our home and business. The McGuffin house, the original farmhouse, is a registered state landmark. CloverFields Farm has a prosperous farming history. They are continuing this rural story in their own unique way by the addition of CloverFields Kitchen a place to explore the past through food and merge it with our modern lifestyles.
CloverFields Farm is dedicated to the preservation of southern, especially Kentucky, food traditions. The kitchen is commercially-outfitted compliant with Health Department standards. In this kitchen I develop new recipes based on original ideas, inspirations from my culinary research, and most often according to what is in season.
On the farm, they make many gifts and specialty items. She is currently working on her first cookbook, but she also has a long resume developing recipes for several companies. She has also won several contests and cook-offs with her original recipes.