Friday, April 10, 2015

Five on Friday:Easter dinner

I thought I'd close out this week after Easter with a final Easter related post for my:

and I'm linking with Amy at Love Made My Home.

I thought I'd share 5 things we traditionally enjoy for Easter dinner each year. We usually host the dinner at our house and have my hubby's parents and my mom over with us. We of course, like many folks, have ham as our main course. I often have some appetizers out for when our family first get here and one I do each year are deviled eggs.

I think I probably make these a little different each year as I don't follow any specific recipe. I usually make them pretty basic where I take the egg yolks and mix them with mayo and some mustard, salt, pepper, & paprika and top with more paprika. Some years I think I throw in relish or a different kind of mustard - you get the idea. I like to put the filling in a baggie and snip off a corner and squeeze the filling into the egg whites as it looks a little neater. I love these springy flower egg dishes I found in a fabric/craft store several years ago.

And what's ham dinner without some yummy cheesy potatoes!?! I have made different versions of these - with creamed soup etc, but our favorite recipe is these:

However, I'll warn you right now they're not low cal and if you're faint of heart turn away now! Lol  These are made with a 2 pound bag of frozen country style hashbrowns that are thawed. Then take 1 pound of velveeta cheese and cut into cubes and place in large bowl in microwave and melt (do about 50% power for a couple minutes and stir and keep running at couple minute intervals and stop to stir until melted). Then stir in a cup of sour cream and a cup of mayo and 1/2 to 1 whole onion, diced small (depending on how much you like onion). It will look like the mixture on the left. Then stir in the hashbrowns add salt and pepper & spread into pan. Top with more pepper. Like photo on right. You can do this day ahead. Before you bake them crunch corn flakes all over the top and melt a stick of butter and pour over the top. Bake at 350* for an hour. These are not low cal - but always a HIT!  ((I do often use light mayo & light sour cream))

We have some veggie side dishes - corn, raw veggie crudite and also some warm dinner rolls. But a favorite side dish each year is my strawberry spinach salad. It's as yummy as it is pretty.

I do this salad in layers. So I take some chopped romaine lettuce and spinach leaves and add a layer of sliced strawberries, mandarin orange segments, red onion and my homemade sugared pecans. Then do another layer of the greens with all the pretty toppings again and serve this with sweet creamy poppyseed dressing and extra sugared pecans on the side.

Love those pretty layers! This is a great salad all summer long and also good with a strawberry or raspberry vinaigrette instead of the poppyseed dressing.

And of course one of the best parts of any holiday dinner - dessert! I usually do 2 desserts each year and one we typically do every year is fruit pizza or mini fruit pizzas as it's my kiddos' favorite. 

For the mini fruit pizzas simply take sugar cookie dough and cut into slices (I used store bought) and bake according to directions. You could also arrange the slices on a cookie sheet and press all together to make a whole pan of crust for the fruit pizza. Then for frosting take one 8 oz. cream cheese (softened), 1/2 c. powdered sugar and 1 tsp of vanilla and blend together in mixer. Then fold in about 4 oz of cool whip topping. Spread over cooled cookie dough and top with fresh fruit. This year we just did berries and grapes (we used raspberries too just not on this batch) but also good with kiwi, mandarin oranges, bananas, even crushed pineapple. 

The second dessert each year is whatever sounds good to me that year or ingredients I have on hand. This year I made a family recipe for what we call "summer cake".

This is a yellow cake with mandarin oranges (& juice) in the batter, and then topped with a fluffy frosting of cool whip, crushed pineapple and vanilla pudding mix. 

It's another yummy light recipe that's good all summer long. I love that there's almost as much topping as there is cake! Here's the recipe I copied off of notes my aunt sent me from my Gram's recipe:

Yellow cake mix
4 eggs
1/2 cup oil
1 small can mandarin oranges with juice
1 9 oz. Cool Whip
1 can crushed pineapple with juice (15 oz.)
1 small box instant vanilla pudding
Preheat oven to 350. Mix cake ingredients, add oranges, beat for 3 minutes. Bake 35 minutes for a 9 x 13 pan. Cool thoroughly. Prepare topping. Mix ingredients. Frost cake and refrigerate for 4 hours.

(If you ever want the variations, let me know but they mainly involve more oranges--less or more pineapple with some juice drained, more Cool Whip, more oil, one less egg, doing layers... I think I would start with the above on a test cake and adjust however you like on your next one.)

So that's Easter dinner around here and I love that there's always lots of leftovers to send home with family and for us to gobble up for several days after! Have a wonderful weekend. xo


  1. I just love how you describe what you have cooked…sometimes I throw in this, sometimes I throw in that. I feel like I’m watching the “Carrie B Cooking” cooking show, lol. Your culinary talents amaze me. When I grow up I want to be just like you ;-) lol. But thanks for including the organized recipes with clear and concise directions neatly laid out for those of us who need all the help we can get.

    Happy weekend to you dear friend!! xx

    1. Oh my goodness Carrie - you are hilarious! And incredibly sweet. I'm so far from anybody culinary and just a very basic home cook. I've just been cooking a long time and it's almost a hobby I enjoy. But truly thank you. It's so fun to share something I love and it means so much when someone wonderful (like you) appreciates it.

      Happy weekend to you my Friend! xoxo

  2. Your meal looks amazing!
    And I am so thankful you share the recipes too!!
    Thank you for the potatoe recipe.
    I have one that I have used forever...but yours sounds better!!!!
    Have a great weekend, my friend!!!!

    1. Thanks Billie Jo! I obviously enjoy sharing my love of cooking. Lol
      I love seeing the goodies you come up with too! One of my favorite things about blogland - checking out others crafts, ideas, recipes.

      Happy weekend Hon! xoxo

  3. These photos are making me so hungry. They look and sound delicious. Thank you for sharing the cake recipe.

    1. Aw thanks so much! That cake recipe is a tried and true favorite and is very adaptable depending on your tastes.

      Have a wonderful weekend!! xo

  4. Wow, Carrie! I hope you invite me over next Easter! Lol! I would starve for days just to stuff myself on all that delicious food! The cheesy potatoes, the gorgeous salad (I love that you put it in a clear bowl) and those wonderful desserts! Thank you for the cake recipe - my mouth is watering. Have a good weekend, my friend and I hope spring is just around the corner.....xo Karen

    1. Ha - thanks Karen! Consider yourself invited anytime and I DO starve myself ahead to save room for that meal!! Not to mention the calories!! Lol

      You have to try the cake recipe - a wonderful one we've had in the family a long time and it's so light and yummy.

      Happy weekend - feeling like spring over here with the sun shining away! xoxo

  5. It all sounds fabulous, especially those potatoes!!! They are wonderful I imagine. I love the salad as well!!! Scrummy!!! What else is there to say! Thank you so much as always for joining in! I hope that you have a great weekend! xx

    1. Thanks Amy! And thanks for hosting such a fun party with your 5onFri! It's fun to think about ideas for it each week. ;)

      Happy weekend my dear Gal! xo

  6. Oh my gosh, all your recipes sound just delicious! My mouth is watering at the sight of your salad and I'll definitely be making fruit pizzas for my littles (what a GREAT idea!) and I love the idea of putting mandarin oranges in the cake batter (I always use pineapple but mandarin oranges must give it a really lovely taste!).....YUM YUM YUM to all of it! Your children are very lucky to have a Mum who loves to cook! And takes such delight in doing it for them!

  7. Yum, Yum! It all looks good! I've had most of those things, and I think it's time to make a few deviled eggs again.

  8. That cake looks delish! and the frosting looks good, love the depth of it. I do like frosting! Some great interesting recipes there, and the fruit pizza dessert looks good too. Yum!

    1. Thanks so much! The fruit pizza - or mini pizzas -are definitely an absolute favorite around here every Spring and all summer long. With good fresh fruit it's the yummiest treat!

      Happy weekend! xo

  9. Hi Carrie, I've called in via Five On Friday. I have never seen egg dishes before - they are lovely. Hope you are enjoying the weekend. x

    1. Thanks so much! I've seen many styles of deviled egg dishes but when I saw these flowers I had to grab them - and I love using them every year.

      Happy weekend to you!! ;) xo

  10. Oh my word, I'd love to come over to yours for dinner! It all looks fabulous. I love that the cake has just as much icing as cake! xx

    1. You'd be welcome any time dear Gal! Lol It is always a favorite holiday meal, other than all the calories I have to walk off after!!! ;)