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Spring forward

Middle Eastern salad

I am looking forward to Easter more than ever this year as the winter seems to have gone on for so long. I’ll be joining in the local Easter egg hunt, hoping the sun will shine on the daffodils and newly budding blossom. My family will be coming to me for lunch and I’ve been happily planning a menu that will please my teenage daughter, my Dad, who has dementia, and everyone in between.

This year I’ve decided to cook small chargrilled lamb chops, with their sweet but smoky flavour. The tender meat will come away easily away from the bones and be easy for my dad to manage (our Nourish Easter braised lamb is another delicious option). I love having a table full of colour, with intensely flavoured side dishes, so alongside the lamb I’ll serve bowls of vibrant salads for people to help themselves (always a good idea if a guest has a poor appetite and may not want a big plateful of food presented to them).

On the menu this Easter: parsley-spiked tabbouleh; a kale salad with slithers of orange and lots of fresh mint; fat green olives, rocket and avocado; chickpeas, asparagus and beetroot; and a big Greek salad because I love the combination of crumbled feta cheese with lamb. And I may serve pardon peppers, which I simply pan fry in a little olive oil and drizzle with crushed sea salt. I find that the herb-heavy salads cut across the richness of the lamb and make it easier to digest. Jugs of water infused with fresh mint and cucumber will also add their stomach-soothing properties.

For pudding, I think it will be a bowl of fresh fruit salad. I usually try to eat as seasonally as possible, but because it’s a special occasion, I’ll add some berries for their beauty and taste. And that will leave enough room for a toasted hot cross bun, which Dad will insist on having when we get back from our traditional long Easter walk. I’ll be baking our Nourish recipe, which is spiked with dried cranberries and stem ginger.

Whatever the weather throws at you, I wish you all a wonderful Easter.

hot cross buns

Related recipes
Easter braised lamb 
Hot Cross Buns

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