Thursday, March 27, 2008


Having grown up Lutheran, it seems strange for Easters to go by without any sort of churchiness. Given that the day is about celebrating the resurrection of Christ, the orgies of candy and general "spoil the kids" attitude strikes me as a perversion of what the holiday is supposed to be about. Not that I ever go to church anymore. In fact, I've avoided it at Christian holidays for the past number of years because being at church reminded me that my grandmother (who died in 2005), the person in my family who enjoyed being there most, couldn't be there--she was too ill to go for a few years before she passed away. Although we went all the time when I was little, over the years our attendance dwindled to Christmas and Easter, when my extended family would fill up two pews or more at University Lutheran. Then, it was fun because the whole family was there. But my cousins grew up and had family traditions of their own, and people went their separate ways. When Grandma could no longer go, we all stopped going and would visit the nursing home instead. I was never particularly religious, going to church was just something we did. Now that I'm older, I don't particularly believe in "religion"... and the thought of going to church makes me want to cry. But still... making Easter into a candy holiday is ridiculous.

We spent the day at my sister-in-law's house, where the candy was flowing like Niagara Falls. They had two cakes and a cheesecake for dessert, plus the dessert that I was ordered to bring that had to serve 12 people (that I didn't find out about until Friday night). So, Saturday was baking day. Not to be outdone by those damn lazy and epitome of tackiness store-bought cakes, I made labor-intensive Linzer cookies--jam sandwiched between two cookies. As you can see from the picture, I was up until 3 in the morning (I started baking at 5 in the evening). But my cookies were vegan, damn good, and ridiculously cute--and also sugar-free so the diabetics could eat them, more than I can say for those nasty cakes. My sister-in-law said I am a Betty Crocker and she doesn't know how I do it. I did it because, despite the complete uncouthness of waiting until 36 hours before the event to invite someone and assign food to bring, I have standards and refuse to let people make me look bad simply due to lack of foresight.

I saved the tiny rabbit cut-outs from the centers and baked those too, as you can see. My sister-in-law kept all of those to put in her kids' lunches. I was also assigned an hors d'oeuvre, so I made artichoke puffs (because that's what my mother-in-law requested) in two different sizes. Those took all morning on Sunday--remember, there had to be enough for twelve. Maybe it's a good thing church wasn't on the schedule.

Easter by the numbers:

62 Linzer cookies
56 bunny cut-out cookies
12 large artichoke puffs
48 small artichoke puffs

Aggravation? Infinite.

That complaining done, however, it could have been a lot worse. Getting on well with the in-laws is always tricky, but this time everything worked out fine in the end.

Happy bunny day.


Katie said...

Hi!! So good to hear from you! I'll be adding you to my list...

Feel free to add a link... I'll add you next time I have a little time.

God Bless and congrats on the marriage!!!

~Angela~ said...

Dude, those cookies are ADORABLE!

Veggie said...

Your bunny cookies are adorable, so worth staying up till 3am to make them.