The first holiday I bumped into once I was a vegetarian, I was left with a bread roll on my plate and nothing else. It didn't occur to me then that I had to alter all my Easter dishes. Over the years, I have learned how to have my plate filled with delicious, festive, vegetarian friendly foods. Here are five of my most favorite dishes to eat and recipes to make Easter day.
1. Deviled Eggs
1 teaspoon of mustard.
1 1/2 tablespoons of sweet pickle relish.
1/4 cup of mayonnaise.
7 large eggs, hard-boiled and peeled.
Add paprika, salt and pepper, and parsley.
Halve 7 eggs lengthwise. Remove yolks and place in a small bowl. Mash yolks with a fork. Stir in mayonnaise, pickle relish, and mustard. Add salt and pepper. Fill egg whites evenly with yolk mixture. Garnish with paprika and parsley.
Store covered in refrigerator. Makes 14 half eggs. If you want them to look extra festive, crack the shell before dying the eggs in color to give them a marble effect.
2. The Lady's Cheesy Mac
This recipe is from the Queen of food herself, Paula Deen and must give credit where credit is due.
4 cups of cooked elbow macaroni.
2 cups of grated (vegetarian) Cheddar cheese.
3 eggs, beaten.
1/2 cups of sour cream.
4 tablespoons of butter.
1/2 teaspoon of salt.
1 cup of milk.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Add cheese to boiled and drained macaroni. Mix in remaining ingredients. Pour into dish and bake for 30 to 45 minutes.
Add more cheese on top if you want it even more gooey.
3. Spinach Salad
1/4 cup of dried cranberries.
3 tablespoons of lightly toasted walnuts.
1 (5-ounce) package of baby spinach.
4 tablespoons of blue cheese.
1/4 Red Onion, thinly sliced.
Newman's Own Raspberry Walnut Vinaigrette Salad Dressing.
Lightly toast walnuts just until fragrant (allow to cool).
Top Spinach with Red Onion, Cranberries, Walnuts and blue cheese.
Toss with dressing.
4. Fruit Dish
1 Cantaloupe (cut into chunks). 1/4 Watermelon (cut into chunks). 1 Honeydew (cut into chunks). 1/2 Pineapple (cut into chunks). 3 cups of grapes. 1 container of Fage (Fa-yeh!) total 0% Greek Strained yogurt.
Mix all fruit together. Place around the rim of a plate. Put a dollop (size optional) of Greek yogurt in the center and enjoy!
5. Bunny Cupcakes
Cake mix of your choice (I like to use Betty Crocker's white cake).
Frosting of your choice (I like to use Betty Crocker's cream cheese frosting).
Follow the ingredients of your box.
Follow the instructions of your box. Spread the frosting on the cupcakes once they've cooled and decorate. In the spirit of togetherness, I did top my cupcakes with little peep bunnies. I knew my carnivore family and friends would appreciate it, but fellow vegetarians, I'd advice you to remove the peeps before consuming.
Makes 24. Can be modified to anyone's decoration preferences.
It is my hope that anyone who tries these recipes enjoys every bite. The best things in life are often learned, including festive vegetarian meals. You better believe my plate will be filled with each of these dishes this Easter. I have learned over the years that these recipes never really grow old, they just get better with the knowledge that you can still enjoy this great holiday, even when you say no to ham, peeps and jellybeans.