Celebration in my family equals food. Consequently, all holidays equal food. Easter is no exception.
Because we do not have any additional days off for Easter, a trip home is out of the question. So….that means we can make our very first ever Family Easter Dinner (like without our moms actually doing the big cooking).
We began the menu negotiations last week. Although ham is traditional in my family, I didn’t want Dev to feel bound by that. The task of meat preparation was assigned to Dev, so I felt like he should make the choice. I have been after him for the last few weeks to fix his super scrumptious Cornish game hens (made with cream and stout), so I made that suggestion. He agreed, mostly because he figured it would shut me up. All that remained was side dish and dessert selection. These were relegated to me. At first, I wanted to make a traditional cornbread dressing. However, whilst reading a favorite food blog, I found an Asparagus Mushroom Bread Pudding recipe. I know I should give the guy credit, but I can't remember which blog I read it on. If I ever figure it out, I'll come back and link you to it, I promise. Anyway, I decided the dressing could wait until Thanksgiving…..In one of my cooking magazines, cookingclub.com , I came across a Chocolate Silk Cheesecake recipe. The title alone convinced me that this was a suitable Easter desert.
Early this afternoon, I baked the crust and whipped up the filling. The pie is now chilling in the refrigerator. I chopped up all the component parts of the bread pudding and they are sitting on the counter, waiting for the silky, custardy filling to be prepared and poured over them. Our estimated dinner time is 5:00pm. Expect another post soon with pics of the finished products!
If interested…I have included the recipes for my parts of dinner below.
Savory Asparagus Bread Pudding
1 lb. loaf of sourdough or other crusty bread, cut into cubes
1c. stock (I used vegetable)
1 teaspoon salt
½ teaspoon pepper
½ teaspoon dried dill
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed and chopped into 1” pieces
3 to 4 ounces mushrooms, chopped (I used cremini’s)
¼ c. thinly sliced shallots
1c. shredded gruyere cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Grease a 9x13” baking dish.
In a medium bowl, whisk together milk, broth, eggs, salt, pepper and dill. Put bread cubes in huge mixing bowl. Pour egg mixture over bread. Toss with asparagus, mushrooms, shallots and cheese. Mix well and pour into the greased baking dish. Bake for 45 minutes or til the eggs mixture is set and the top is golden brown.
Chocolate Cream Cheese Satin Pie
1 ½ c. chocolate cookie crumbs (I used teddy grahams)
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
10 oz. semisweet chocolate, chopped (I used chocolate chips)
1 (8oz) pkg. cream cheese, room temp.
½ c. powdered sugar, divided
2 c. heavy cream
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Heat oven to 325 degrees. Combine all crust ingredients in medium bowl. Press into bottom and up sides of 9” pie pan. Bake 8 minutes, cool on wire rack.
Melt 10 oz. chocolate in medium heatproof bowl over saucepan filled with 1” barely simmering water (bowl should not touch water). Stir frequently until chocolate is melted and smooth.
Beat cream cheese and ¼ c. powdered sugar in large bowl at medium speed until smooth. Beat in melted chocolate at low speed until blended.
Beat cream, remaining ¼ c. powdered sugar and vanilla in large bowl at medium high speed until firm but not stiff peaks. Fold half of the whipped cream into the chocolate mixture until blended; spread in crust. Spread remaining whipped cream over filling. Sprinkle with cocoa powder and garnish with mint leaves.
Refrigerate 4 hours before serving.