The family get together is coming. With another holiday ahead, I thought I’d plan ahead for this year’s arrival of my favorite celebration. My three siblings bring their family to our farm every year. Every year, I prepare four sets of main dishes with the expectation they will bring two side dishes, each. The banquet tables will be loaded with more food than I typically want to see, and this year, our parents are out of the hospital, so we get another year filled with food, fun, and photos. This year, I’m sparing no expense at making some truly exceptional dishes.
Easy Easter Ham and Egg Casserole
The first dish I make is what my wife will want. She loves a great ham and egg combo, and our kids will leave us the lions share of it to partake with Mom and Dad. The servings should make about eight servings for people who have skipped breakfast. Where I differ here and this recipe is I don’t use cooking grease. I always cook a dozen strips of bacon for us at breakfast, and when we get home from church, I scrape the bacon grease from the skillet. That in lieu of the cooking grease, the Crisco, that so many people subscribe to, it’s delicious.
Alton Brown’s Crown Rack of Lamb
This is the dish that usually get’s wiped first. A crown rack of lamb requires two racks of lamb, between six to eight ribs for each. You start splitting between the ribs and you slice about two-and-a-half inches on the fat side. Once you do that, flip your racks over, and follow the ribs and trace a line where you can cut and not go clean through. Once you look at it twice, you’ll understand.
Cut between the ribs and then set your knife down once you do. Turn them each into a semi circle and tie them together, making an ‘O’. Once you snug them, use a piece of string like a garrote and pull the excess sinews and fatty pieces from them. Now, rub extra virgin olive oil on the rack and while you do that, manipulate the ribs to have them flaring out at the top. This should look like a rib. For those with children, do not let them wear the crown.
Put the rack on the middle rack in the oven. Bake it for about a half-hour. It should get up to 130 degrees, using a thermometer.
Pull the roast from the oven and cover it with aluminum foil. Add some juices from your spice and wine collection and let them seep in at the base of the crown (the tasty bits). If you want to add stuffing to the center of the roast, you may. I don’t like that, but your mileage may vary.
Glazed Ham with Tangerines and Carrots
This is a recipe that should make anyone happy. In your roasting pan, put your ham fat-side-up. Score the piece of meat with dozens of short 1/2” stabs with your cooking knife. Make a fancy pattern with your knife if you please, some like diamonds, others like dollar signs. I typically scribe the Lord’s Prayer in mine. Once I’m done being thankful, I will add a mixture of cajun seasoning, along with ground black pepper, to the piece.
In a dish, mix up some rosemary and chop sage leaves with olive oil. I rub this all over the ham, the entire time whispering, “Good Templeton. Good.” Scrub, scrub.
Once I do this, I put the roast in the oven. I cook him for two hours. The entire time, I’m probably facebooking photos of my massive lunch/supper and the farm. Once I get my social media out of my system, I’m cleansed, I start work on cutting up the carrots and tangerines. I’ll mix all sorts of brown sugar, extra virgin olive oil, tangerines, and saute it into a nice glaze. Once I have the desired content, I pull the ham out and pour this on the meat. After I do that, I line the meat and lay a couple of the carrots on the roasting pan. I’m starving by this point.
Once the ham is ready to go, I put it in the oven at regular intervals of thirty minutes cooking, then pull it for a quick baste of the glaze. I’ll do this for thirty minutes, three times. That third time, I apply my heaven juice and then take this to the table.
Slow Roasted Salmon with a Cucumber Dill Salad
The final piece I’m making is a fish piece for my oldest brother, he’s Catholic and has turned into a fish fan. I don’t really fault him, salmon is an awesome fish that can prove so many great things to health nuts. He’s lost fifty pounds since he started on his journey, and this does not let him cheat, too much.
I will pull the cucumber and quarter it, pull the seeds and leave the skin. I mix some thin slices of it with salt, put it in the collander. Then I drain the yogurt with a coffee filter on a strainer on top of a bowl. Rinse everything down, cool water. Once I do that, I will literally squeeze and drain the water from the cucumbers by hand.
Toss everything, the dill, the yogurt, the cayenne, zest, then season this with pepper. Sample it, and if you’re not sure if you like it, re-season to what you want. While you do that, preheat the oven to 275. Pinch some tumeric and put it all over your skillet.
Once your oven is ready for this, you can set your timer for ten minutes. This is going to be the time when you open up the oven and flip your piece. After you do this twice, you’re ready to quarter your salmon. Because of how salmon is, beware of the cooking between the fish too much or too little. A properly done salmon is bright orange.
This is awesome and if you are a fish-lover, you should be barking up my tree to find out how one can bring this delicacy to their table.
I hope you enjoyed this immensely. I’m looking forward to sharing more vital pieces of information with you. Have a great day, and Happy Easter!