Easter Bank Holiday Lunch: Pear, Blue Cheese & Chicory Salad, Roast Lamb, Orange Cake

by Sasha Wilkins on April 1, 2013 · 22 comments

Easter table setting

Being stuck in England for Easter had its bonuses, one of which was being able to drive up the glamorous M1 to my mother’s cottage in Northamptonshire for Easter Bank Holiday lunch today. She was cooking for nine people, so one more wasn’t going to be an issue. I was thrilled as lots of my favourite people were there, including blissful Tony who reads LLG daily (*waves*), and dearest Rog, a dab hand with a corkscrew.

St Julien Bordeaux 2005

St Julien Bordeaux 2005 St Julien Bordeaux 2005

Easter table setting

The first course was a Pear, Blue Cheese (Saint Augur, which is a good sub for the much more spendy Roquefort), Chicory, Watercress and Walnut Salad, with a splash of Balsamic Vinegar. No other dressing. We like Belazu because it’s really thick and syrupy: Balsamic really is one of those things that it is worth paying a little bit more for. Thin, watery, sour vinegar is not delicious.

Easter table setting

It’s a great salad if you have a rich, meaty main course coming up: it’s light, crispy, creamy and crunchy, and the vinegar sets up your taste buds for the lamb to come.

chicory, watercress, walnut, Saint Agur salad

The wine was a 2003 Condrieu – a white wine from the Voignier grape.

Condrieu Viognier 2003

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Then it was time for the main course: very pink roast leg of lamb with garlic, rosemary, butter and good anchovy fillets all mashed up and poked into slits in the skin, with a gravy made from the jus, a giant gratin Daupinois, petit pois, and roasted parsnips.

Roast leg of lamb

Roast lamb sunday lunch

The red wine was a 2005 Chateau Lagrange from Saint-Julien.

St Julien Bordeaux 2005

gratin Dauphinois

Then it was time for the cheese. One piece of squishy, oozy, melting Brie de Meaux. With grapes and pain de campagne.

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Then my mother’s signature pudding cake pimped out for Easter with some chick and egg action: a recipe by Diana Henry, where an entire orange is boiled, liquidised, beaten with eggs and ground almonds, and then baked. There was a compote of Sicillian blood oranges to go with it.

Easter cake

Orange blossom cake

Then a scrumptious sauce made from Greek yogurt mixed with Creme Fraiche and marmalade. Genius.

Orange blossom cake

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I’m not quite sure what these chicks are saying to each other…

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{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

s April 1, 2013 at 23:17

This is such an exquisite meal – my God, each and every single thing is delicious and so lovingly created for the guests (lovely touch of the creme fraiche, marmalade and Greek yoghurt) – i adore Brie from Meaux. and those wine flutes / glasses – they are just beautiful. Please wish your mum a belated Happy Easter from me. x s

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LLG April 3, 2013 at 14:28

@s: She send Easter greetings back lovely. The wine glasses are from Dartington Glass: they are very heavy, which I love. LLGxx

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Nancyblackett April 1, 2013 at 23:36

That makes me weep with longing to be in England. I know your winter has been never ending but that is exactly the kind of Easter lunch I miss. Your mother’s table is exquisite (she taught you well!) and I have those water glasses (but not her beautiful silverware). I recently learned a tip on that orange cake (mine came via claudia roden so may be different) but that you can prick the orange, put it in suitable bowl, cover in cling film and cook in the microwave in 10 minutes. Happy Easter

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LLG April 3, 2013 at 14:28

@Nancyblackett: oh that’s brilliant: I am definitely going to try that microwave trick, thank you so much LLGxx

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TRENDSURVIVOR April 1, 2013 at 23:43

Great pics. The food looks so delicious!
See you in my blog, maybe.
xxx
Nina
http://trendsurvivor.com/

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Susan April 2, 2013 at 06:05

Oh please, please ask your mother’s permission to share the cake recipe. That looks divine! (And potentially edible for my celiac sister!)

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LLG April 3, 2013 at 14:29

@Susan: It’s from Diana Henry’s Crazy Water, Pickled Lemons, but I am going to make it on here shortly LLGxx

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Jo April 2, 2013 at 09:45

This looks AMAZING :)
WOW!!

Please check out my new blog? Comments appreciated :)

http://primeministeroffun.blogspot.co.uk

xoxo

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sadie April 2, 2013 at 10:00

oh my. Just my kind of food, especially the starter.

Can I come next time ?!
x

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LLG April 3, 2013 at 14:29

@sadie: HA! My mother really does know how to do an Easter meal LLGxx

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Janie April 2, 2013 at 11:07

looks do-able and yummy, hope you all had a fab Easter

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Heather April 2, 2013 at 14:19

Mmmmm…. I second the request for cake recipe, please. Another gorgeous table setting.

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LLG April 3, 2013 at 14:29

@Heather: it’s en route, I promise! LLGxx

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Angela April 2, 2013 at 15:12

It all looks and sounds absolutely delicious!

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Helen April 2, 2013 at 18:11

That looks AMAZING. My mouth is watering at the thought of it all. Can I come to Mummy LLG’s next Easter please?!

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LLG April 3, 2013 at 14:31

@Helen: You can see why I am obsessed with food and with entertaining! LLGxx

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