Easy hot-cross buns, golden baked ham, juicy lamb, and ideas for a make-ahead brunch.

Is it a coincidence that Easter, a holiday that celebrates rebirth, takes place as the earth is springing back to life after winter dormancy? We think not, because it just seems so right. As California hills are greening up with spring rains (well, most years, anyway), grocery stores and farmers markets are starting to have glorious new greenery, too. Incorporate some of it in your Easter dinner.  Whether you want to go traditional or a little offbeat, we’ve got some menu suggestions to help you make the most of this rite of spring. 

If you like an Easter ham, we’ve got just the thing: a fairly traditional baked ham with a tangy glaze that hits all the right salty and sweet notes.

Lamb, of course, is quintessential, and we’ve got a few preparations for you. There’s a meltingly tender slow-roasted leg of lamb that carries some of winter’s hardiness into this spring celebration. There are a few roasts, and succulent racks, as well. Do you like lamb but find the mint jelly a little cloying? Our savory almond-mint pesto may change your mind about the traditional condiment.

And as for sides, asparagus is a spring go-to, and we have a great recipe that involves grilling the spears. Thinking a little further outside the CSA box, you might try an eggy chiles rellenos, or that old standby of green peas—we’ve got a preparation that will make you forget all about the mealy mush bombs of your childhood.

Don’t forget dessert! These adorable macaroon-like coconut nest cookies symbolize new life in the most charming and whimsical way. They’re a sweet and delicious note on which to end your Easter dinner.


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