Lamb, Ham or Turkey … HAPPY EASTER!

Happy Easter Carnivores,

Now that the meal has been consumed and the family has returned home, I have been thinking about all the wonderful food that celebrates the Easter Holiday season so today, I present this missive about traditional feasts.

I was brought up in a Christian home but, I want to focus here on the food and not necessarily the worship of any single religion. That said, traditional Easter foods historically represent the coming of Spring and the promise of abundance the new season brings. Whether your feast includes Lamb, Ham, Turkey or something else, this is the time of year when people celebrate renewal, for others Easter is a day to rejoice in the resurrection of Christ. It’s also a day when people gather to enjoy the fellowship of a bountiful feast with family and friends.

As a child I remember fondly the Easter feasts at our house beginning with Hot Cross Buns for breakfast on Good Friday morning. Did you know the cross symbol on the buns is a modern-day reminder of the Crucifixion but, years ago it was a representation of the four seasons by ancient Anglo-Saxons to pay respect to the Goddess Eastre. Hmmm … who knew ???

Pretzels (although I didn’t know this either) were once shaped like a person praying with arms folded in front. Made of unleavened bread, they made it to the list of Traditional Easter foods.

Growing up, Ham and Turkey were the usual suspects at our dinner table but Lamb is also a huge favourite. The lamb is traditional to many because it represents the sacrificial Lamb eaten at Jewish Passover.

It always seemed odd to me that (for obvious reasons) Ham is a food eaten at Easter however, the reason for this goes way back to the time before refrigeration. Pork was slaughtered in the Fall, the meat smoked and cured over the Winter months was ready to eat in the Spring … around Easter. Pork is also considered to be lucky in some European cultures.

The Turkey is a bit of a mystery to me. As far as “traditional” goes, it is a very popular food eaten at Easter but, it seems to be only a North American thing so … I suspect it’s because the bird is indigenous to the Continent and usually represents a food served at celebrations here on this side of the pond.

What ever you ended up having at your house this year, I hope it was a wonderful get together with your family and friends.

As for me, I’m still looking forward to the sandwiches …

Happy Easter Carnivores and … stay hungry.

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