Monday, March 26, 2018

Host a Charming Easter Dinner

Courtesy of Courtney Whitmore
Photography by Evin Photography

Happy Easter Friends,

Throw a charming Easter dinner party this year filled with yellow and green accents, a delicious menu, sweet party favors and an adorable kids' table. Start with our featured Charming Easter Tablescape. Celebrate Easter by setting a dinner table full of charming details. Pick a color palette of butter yellow and grass green to usher in spring in style.

Beautiful Easter Blooms

Bring the freshness of spring to your table by arranging blooms of tulips, star of Bethlehem and maidenhair ferns into white vases like milk glass or Easter rabbit vases on coordinating cake stands for height.

DIY Dipped Flatware

Add a pop of coordinated color with hand-dipped flatware. Simply dip a set of flatware in yellow paint and let dry. Finish with a clear topcoat. The colorblock look gives a modern twist to a traditional place setting, and you will be able to use them for future occasions. Be sure to handwash only.

Festive Bunny Centerpiece

Nestle a bunny vase inside a rimmed bowl or wide vase filled with green grass to create a festive Easter centerpiece. Add coordinated yellow Easter eggs throughout.

Charming Easter Place Setting

Tie in pops of green by swapping traditional chargers for cabbage leaves. Stack white on white plates, and finish with coordinating napkins in a modern geometric pattern.

Bunny Soap Party Favor

Send guests home with mini bunny soap hand tied with white sheer ribbon and placed in fluted white mini bowls for the perfectly coordinated favor.

Mini Basket Decor

Scatter small white Easter baskets filled with mini yellow and white chocolate egg candies throughout the table to serve as decor, as well as an extra touch of sweetness. Let guests nibble as they enjoy company and conversation.

Brown Sugar Ham

Add a hint of sweetness to the traditional ham recipe by flavoring it with a brown sugar glaze. Brush traditional Easter ham with a mouth-watering brown-sugar glaze. Carve ham for easy serving. Display on a large tray adorned with fresh lemon wedges for garnish. Here's the the recipe>>

  • 1 whole bone-in ham
  • 2 cups light brown sugar, packed
  • 1/4 cup pineapple juice
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon yellow mustard
  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Place ham in roasting dish and bake ham fat side up covered tightly with aluminum foil. Bake 20 minutes for every pound of ham. Bake one hour for a 3-pound ham and 2 hours for a 6-pound ham.
  2. While ham is baking, whisk together remaining ingredients in a large bowl.
  3. Remove from oven, and trim off any fat. Brush on brown sugar glaze, and bake at 350 degrees F for 10-15 minutes. Carve and serve.
Recipe courtesy of Courtney Whitmore

Honey Glazed Carrots

Serve a side dish of honey glazed carrots for the perfect accompaniment to ham both kids and adults will enjoy. The carrots are easy to make ahead of time; simply warm to serve. Here's the recipe>>

  • 3 cups baby carrots
  • 1/2 cup butter
  • 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup honey
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  1. In a medium skillet, combine butter, brown sugar, honey, nutmeg and salt.
  2. Add carrots, and cover to cook on medium low heat for 10-15 minutes. Stir occasionally. Remove from heat and serve.
Recipe courtesy of Courtney Whitmore

Fresh Homemade Cinnamon Rolls

Homemade cinnamon rolls frosted with cream cheese icing make a great addition to an Easter dinner party. These also make a delicious breakfast treat for family and friends. Here's the recipe>>

For the dough:
  • 1/4 ounce package yeast
  • 1/2 cup warm water
  • 1/2 cup warm milk
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar, plus 1/4 teaspoon
  • 1/3 cup unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg
  • 3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
For the filling:
  • 1/2 cup softened butter
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
  • 1 teaspoon nutmeg
For the glaze:
  • 1-1/2 cups powdered sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 2 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 5 tablespoons butter, softened
  • 2 tablespoons milk
  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water (110 degrees F) and 1/4 teaspoon sugar. Set aside.
  2. In a large bowl mix milk, sugar, melted butter, salt and egg. Add 2 cups of flour and mix until smooth.
  3. Add yeast mixture to milk mixture. Mix in remaining flour until dough is easy to handle. Add additional flour if needed. Knead dough on lightly floured surface for 5 to 10 minutes.
  4. Place dough in well-greased bowl, cover and let rise until doubled in size, usually 1 to 1 1/2 hours. For a warm location to let yeast rise, turn on oven for one minute, then turn off. Set bowl inside oven.
  5. When doubled in size, press dough down using your fists. Roll out on a floured surface into a 9x15-inch rectangle.
  6. Spread softened butter all over dough. Mix sugars, cinnamon and nutmeg. Sprinkle over buttered dough.
  7. Beginning at the 15-inch side, roll up dough and pinch edge together to seal. Cut into 15-20 slices.
  8. Coat the bottom of baking pan with butter or baking spray.
  9. Place cinnamon roll slices close together in the pan and let rise until dough is doubled, about 45 minutes in warm location.
  10. Bake for about 30 minutes or until lightly golden.
  11. While rolls are baking, combine glaze ingredients using an electric mixer. Brush glaze onto tops of cooled rolls.
Cute Easter Kids' Table

Set a coordinated pink and yellow table just for the little ones complete with sweet treats, special basket favors and Easter egg touches.

Set the Table

Top white plates with pink ones for a perfectly coordinated place setting atop pink and white pompom fabric reminiscent of cute bunny tails. To make the bunny tail tablecloth, glue pom poms to a solid-colored tablecloth in a random pattern, or use double-stick tape to attach on a plastic tablecloth.

Special Hanging Treats

Give the kids a special treat by hanging edible bunny-shaped cookies on a miniature white tree that serves double duty as a cute, festive centerpiece.

Bunny Cookie Tree

Create your own mini tree by spraying a small branch in white and placing floral foam in a small planter. Adorn with yellow gingham bows and hanging bunny-shaped cookies. Finish by gluing fake green leaves.

Darling Easter Place Settings

Make each little one feel special with their own striped yellow Easter basket filled with yellow paper grass filler, pink and yellow Easter eggs and a gingham bow.

DIY Bunny Napkin Rings

Give the kids something to giggle about with little bunny ear napkin rings. Simply sew fabric in two ear shapes, stitch on to a napkin ring and glue on a bunny tail pom pom.

Mini Hot Cross Buns

Serve miniature hot cross buns during your Easter celebration this year. Kids and adults alike will love this recipe for traditional hot cross buns. Make them in smaller sizes, and display in a shallow Easter basket. Here's the recipe>>

  • 2 packages (1/4 ounce) yeast
  • 1 cups warm water
  • 1 cup warm milk
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/3 cup butter, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar + 1/4 teaspoon
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground allspice
  • 6 to 7 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 2 tablespoons water
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 2 tablespoons milk or heavy cream
  1. In a small bowl, dissolve yeast in warm water (110 degrees F) and 1/4 teaspoon sugar and set aside.
  2. In a large bowl, combine milk, eggs, butter, sugar, salt, spices, yeast mixture and 3 cups flour; beat on medium speed until smooth.
  3. Add in raisins and additional flour (1/2 cup at a time) until soft dough is formed. Dough will still be slightly sticky.
  4. Knead dough on a floured surface for 5-6 minutes.
  5. Place in well-greased bowl, cover and let rise until doubled in size, usually 1 to 1 1/2 hours. For a warm location to let yeast rise, turn on oven for one minute, then turn off. Set bowl inside oven.
  6. When doubled in size, press down dough down using your fists. Divide into small balls (30 regular size or 60 miniature size).
  7. Place 2 inches apart on greased baking sheet. Cover with tea towel and let rise in a warm place for 30-45 minutes until doubled.
  8. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
  9. In a small bowl, whisk together egg yolk and water. Brush onto tops of buns.
  10. Bake for 15 minutes or until lightly golden. Let cool.
  11. While buns are cooling, whisk together powdered sugar and milk to form a glaze. Pipe in an “x” pattern on top of buns.
Recipe courtesy of Courtney Whitmore

Sippin' Sweet

Serve milk in glass bottles tied with white raffia and finished with yellow- and white- striped paper straws to coordinate with the yellow and pink party table.

Colorful Table Setting

Be sure to add pops of color to the party table with inexpensive paper plates in coordinating colors like pink and yellow. Fill mini baking cups with yellow and pink chocolate eggs for a special treat.

Sweet Basket Favors

Send the kids home with their place setting baskets, and let them collect the cookies and edible eggs to place inside as treats for later. They will love this sweet basket as a memory of their Easter dinner.

Bon App├ętit...

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Live well,

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