Monday, April 16, 2012

the gift that keeps on giving

I told you all about how Easter is my favorite holiday.  In that post, I really focused more on the relational aspect of it.  But let's be for real:  the food is a huge plus as well.  One of the sad parts of being a pastor (and the main cook in our home) is that the big food holidays get short shrift.  Who has time to cook a fancy spread when they're doing four worship services on Christmas Eve and two on Christmas Day?  Who has energy to put together a fabulous Easter lunch when you're at church from 6:00 am to noon??  Not me.

One of the things I love about our big traditional American cultural/religious feasts is that we still cling to a bit of what is seasonal in those traditions.  Sweet potatoes or cranberries at Thanksgiving?  In season.  Peas or asparagus at Easter?  Spring foods!  Even Easter eggs - in North America, chickens are just coming out of moult around the time Easter usually happens.  That means the reappearance of fresh yellow yolks. 

This year, I decided to do a simple but traditional Easter supper:  ham glazed with apricot jam, asparagus, scalloped potatoes, King's Hawaiian rolls (husband's favorite), salad with dill vinaigrette.  The smallest ham they had at the store was 3 pounds.  For a family of two (baby only eats a little), that should make 6 meals. 

So, after the initial meal, I had to get creative in order to use up the ham in a week or so.  Here are some ideas for leftover Easter ham:

In a frittata with asparagus and leeks:

Ham sandwiches on sourdough with lettuce, cheese, tomato, mustard, mayonnaise:

Spicy black bean soup with ham:

I forgot to snap a picture of my final reinvention, but you can use your imagination:  a big salad with ham and whatever other veggies you need to use up. 

Hope I've given you some good ideas for how to reuse that Easter meal without just doing boring leftovers!  Leave a comment or email if you want any of these recipes.

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