March 30, 2015

4 Sweet Ways to Celebrate Easter - Photo by Tessa Zundel (HobbyFarms.com)

For some reason, many of us well-meaning adults fight an unbelievably strong urge to buy our kids baby chickens and rabbits at Easter. Live ones. Why do we want to do this? Animals require care, feeding and housing—they’re not toys. Perhaps its because we want connect our children to the symbols of Easter that represent new life, especially after a long winter of white snow and grey skies. While I’m all for getting baby chicks this time of year if you have the means to care for them, I’m not an advocate of gifting pets to children who aren’t ready to take care of them.

If live chicks and rabbits aren’t on the docket of Easter fun, edible ones are a perfect substitute. Here are several options sure to please your family.

1. Chocolate Easter Chicks and Bunnies

You can buy these or make them yourself. All you need is a silicone or plastic chick or bunny candy mold and some melted chocolate. Pour the melted chocolate into the mold and let it harden in the fridge. If you use this recipe, the candy will start to soften at room temperature because of the coconut oil, but it will be so much healthier for your children … and you. (You know you sneak a bunny ear or two when no one is looking.)

2. Marshmallow Easter Chicks

Making your own marshmallows is one of the easiest sweet hacks ever. To make your own marshmallow chicks, use a chick-shaped cookie cutter to cut out shapes once your marshmallows have set up. Homemade marshmallows can be stickier than commercial types, so dust your cookie cutter with coconut flour, homemade powdered sugar or Fair Trade cocoa before you plunge it into your marshmallow canvas. Stick with a really sharp, stainless-steel cutter, as well. If you can only find plastic, depress the cutter firmly before you pull it away. After they’re cut, roll your marshmallow chicks in coconut flour or flakes, cocoa, powdered sugar or cinnamon. Let them air-dry overnight.

3. Easter Cake Pops

Hippety hop cookie pops! On the blog????

A photo posted by @bakerella on

OK, there’s probably no way to make these cake pops healthy, but they are cute. If you’re torn between the adorableness of a live baby bunny and these, I say make these. You can get the live bunny when you have all the equipment you need and your child is prepared to care for it. A good book on raising rabbits would be the perfect gift to go along with these cake pops.

4. Soaked-Flour Easter Biscuits

4 Sweet Ways to Celebrate Easter - Photo by Tessa Zundel (HobbyFarms.com)

Despite all the sugary candies at Easter, one of my favorite treats is a humble sweet biscuit. Presoaking the flours makes the grains easier to digest. We cut the biscuits into chicks and drizzled with a raw honey and cinnamon glaze. Sometimes our chicks end up looking more like squashed turkeys, but they help us celebrate this special time of year.

This recipe is prepared over the course of two days, but don’t be intimidated—it’s very simple and will make your finished product so much easier on your gut.

Ingredients

Group 1

  • 3½ cups flour
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 1½ cups whole milk
  • 2 T. apple cider vinegar

Group 2

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1¼ cups of water
  • 2 T. apple cider vinegar or whey
  • 1/4 tsp. yeast

Group 3

  • 1/4 cup sugar or succanat
  • 1 tsp. sea salt
  • 2 T. butter
  • 2 tsp. yeast
  • 2 cups raisins, sultanas, currants or cacao nibs (optional)

Preparation

Mix all ingredients in Group 1 together until well combined. Cover and let sit on your counter overnight.

Mix all ingredients in Group 2 in a mixer for 5 minutes. Let it rest to soak up some of the moisture, then mix for 1 more minute. Cover and let sit on your counter overnight.

The next day, mix the ingredients in Group 3. The optional ingredients listed will make your biscuit taste more like a Hot Cross Bun, a traditional treat this time of year. You can also increase the sugar by 1/4 cup if you want a sweeter biscuit.

Combine all three groups of batter in a mixer, and knead for 8 to 10 minutes. The dough will be wet, but it should clear the sides of your bowl. Add a bit more flour if the dough is too wet, but don’t add too much or you’ll end up with bricks instead of biscuits. Roll dough into a ball, cover, and and let it rise for 1½ hours or until doubled in size.

The dough will still be sticky after rising, so wet your hands to begin shaping the dough. Experiment with different ways to form chicks, but remember that this dough will rise a bit more as it bakes and your chick will double in size.

After you’ve formed your shapes, add raisins for eyes and cacao nibs or slivered almonds for beaks. Bake at 350 degrees F for 35 minutes or until golden brown.

While the biscuits are baking, make the cinnamon-honey glaze. Heat 1 cup of raw honey to just below 110 degrees. Mix with 1 to 3 tablespoons cinnamon. Immediately after you remove the biscuits from the oven, drizzle the glaze overtop. Another option is to top the biscuits with homemade frosting, such as our vanilla honey spread.

What special treats will you be serving up this Easter?

Find more ways to celebrate Easter on HobbyFarms.com:

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