Well if you haven’t gotten the Easter Dinner planned by now, you better go grab another cup of coffee and get to moving! Sometimes as we approach this holiday we are looking for something different on the menu. This recipe for scalloped carrots came to me from ‘Aunt Phyllis, who currently lives on the Merrell Ranch, in southwest Kansas. I say currently because they are planning retirement for summer 2016!
I ‘think’ the first time I ran this recipe was about 4 years ago. Often I suggest asparagus for my holiday dinner. In reality more folks are probably going to eat carrots than asparagus! Especially the younger generation. “IF” I were serving more than 8-10 guests I would probably use both vegetables. If Phillip, our son, has input he might even suggest creamed peas. (This was always my brother, Greg’s favorite side.)
At Easter I almost always use a green and white cross-stitched tablecloth my friend, Francis, made for us. Yes, I go rather ‘old-fashioned’ dressing my table to the max whether I’m using every day dishes or something special. This is also a day when you need to use cloth napkins. Don’t take it for granted that those gathered at your table aren’t absorbing all the particulars about your dinner. In years to come they will remember certain foods served inside specific dishes. If you don’t believe me, just ask the grandkids! You’ll also be surprised when these memories surface.
Still struggling? OK, here’s what we’re having, and parts of it are already made! I know, don’t freak out. We’re super busy the day before Easter so I’ve been prepping ahead of time. The menu at this moment is: Ham Loaf & sauce, scalloped pineapple, potatoes, (type not decided), creamed peas, salad, bread and dessert. It’s just the three of us this year for dinner and with us being rather engaged on Saturday, I’ve prepared a menu that works around being gone. No deviled eggs this year, but I do intend to make a batch of homemade egg salad, my favorite!
I wanted to run my scalloped pineapple again this year, but figured many of my 10-year readers would be tired of seeing it! Easter just isn’t Easter without Scalloped Pineapple, (Thank you Shirley Hinkle!) Shirley is the one who got our family started on this delectable dish. Those in Northeast Missouri will have to ask my mother, Betty, if she made it for Jerry!
The grass is getting green and most of the trees here in the Ozarks are budding out. We may be having our pollen season a bit early this year. For those who have never experienced ‘pollen season’, allow me to describe it. For 4-5 weeks pollen coats everything! You could wipe a chair, table or bench off and in 30 minutes it’s covered again. Typically it’s the first week of May before we can hose the decks and use the outside porches.
Enjoy your Easter with family and friends, get outside and let the fresh air to lift your attitude to a new plateau. He Is Risen. Simply Yours, The Covered Dish. www.thecovereddish.com
Cheese Scalloped Carrots
12 medium carrots, sliced 1/4 – 1/2 inch thick
1/4 cup butter
1 small onion, minced
1/4 cup flour
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon dry mustard
2 cups milk
1/8 teaspoon pepper
1/4 teaspoon celery salt
1/2 pound sharp cheddar cheese, shredded
3 cups buttered bread crumbs
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Pre-cook carrots for 15-20 minutes, drain. Place butter and minced onion in a medium saucepan and cook 2-3 minutes. Add the flour, salt, mustard and milk. Cook, stirring mixture until nice and smooth; add the celery salt and pepper. In a 2-quart casserole, place a layer of carrots, layer of cheese. Repeat until both are used, ending with carrots on top. Pour on the sauce, top with the crumbs. Bake uncovered 25 minutes or until golden brown.
Serves 8 persons.