Come along with me as I journal about my latest cooking and gardening adventures. Discover what grows in my zone five garden, and see what new recipes I try from my cookbook collection each week.

As I share recipes and information from my kitchen, I invite readers to comment and share ideas along with me in this blog. I am looking to increase followers to my blog, so that I may learn more about cooking and gardening.

Since moving to Midland, Michigan, I have been reading and researching many cooking journals, cookbooks and collected recipes from the past thirty years. Organizing pictures of gardens I enjoy has also been a joy for me, as I continue to learn about garden design and horticulture.

angel food cakes

angel food cakes
this kitchen is seasoned with love

Sunday, April 8, 2012

easter table decoration

for many years i have made Easter table decorations with a domed bell jar and natural bird nests.  for this year, i tried something a bit different and simply used solid chocolate rabbits sitting in a dish of jelly eggs.

i saw Martha use solid green jelly beans this year, and a two level platter of chocolate rabbits after i had made my table decoration.  the solid green jelly eggs looked like a bed of grass, which made a nice presentation.  this would be a nice decoration for a dessert table for Easter or for a children's table at mealtime.

croissant french toast

another option for breakfast french toast is to use store bought fresh croissants from the bakery.  using my french toast recipe that was featured in this blog in 2010, substitute croissants for the suggested bread in the recipe.

i simply slice the croissants in half lengthwise, and usually serve one croissant per person.  using a mixture of fresh eggs and egg beaters decreased the amount of egg yolks in the recipe as well.

soak the croissants in the egg mixture as before prior to browning on a griddle or on the stove top.  here, the croissants have been soaking for about 5 minutes to absorb the egg batter.

lightly brown on the stove top with a pat of margarine or butter and then, keep them warm in the oven until all the french toast is ready for breakfast.  serve with cinnamon, powdered sugar, and maple syrup.

croissants make this dish extra special and perfect for an Easter breakfast.

cream cheese icing

nothing says spring time like a carrot cake with cream cheese icing.  using your favorite carrot cake recipe or even a store bought carrot cake mix, try this icing recipe for a tasty frosting.

mix three ounces of softened cream cheese, with 2 tablespoons of softened unsalted butter.  using a hand mixer, slowly add 2 cups of powdered sugar and one teaspoon of vanilla.

this is a quick and tasty icing recipe that complements the carrot cake nicely.  i used a pastry bag to decorate the top of a one layer carrot cake.  enjoy for an Easter or spring time dessert.

easter egg coconut nests

one of my favorite Easter sweets has to be chocolate coconut Easter egg nests.  several well-known candy makers sell these during the springtime every year.  i have found a very good recipe that makes 36 of these nests for a fraction of the cost of store bought candy.

to make the chocolate Easter nests, melt 10 ounces of chocolate over a double boiler, and when melted, stir in one bag or 5 ounces of shredded coconut. i use the standard unsweetened coconut found in the market. i have also used chocolate candy melts at times, and these work equally as well in the recipe.

mix to make certain the chocolate covers all of the coconut shreds. next, using a teaspoon, form Easter egg nests on waxed paper.  when formed, add two jelly belly smaller size jelly beans for the egg decorations.  allow the nests to harden before removing from the waxed paper. this make take an hour or more.

this recipe is a classic that can be used for easter baskets, candy displays, or to share with children.