Easter Bread

sol

#SOL16 Day 25

There is only one thing more precious than our time and that’s who we spend it on. ~Leo Christopher

Today I didn’t worry about time. I planned to do my traditional Easter baking – Ricotta pies and Easter bread. I dug out my handwritten recipes that are stained from years of use and nostalgically thought about the people who generously shared their family recipes with me. I have been making these since I was first married over 35 years ago.

Easter bread takes time and patience. You must melt the butter and let it cool. You must warm the milk but not too hot. Add the yeast and wait for it to bubble. Mix the ingredients then knead the dough for eight minutes. Then it rests and rises under kitchen towels and a homemade afghan – have to keep it warm. Again I wait until it doubles in size. Again I knead in the raisins and nuts (some with no nuts because that’s how my son likes it). Again I wait for them to rise.

Finally they are ready to bake. The house is filled with the aroma of love. Once they emerge from the oven I wait one last time for them to cool so that I can drizzle them with a confectioner sugar mix and nonpareils. It takes me all day.

Today I moved a little slower than I have in years past. I remember years when I made a dozen batches of Easter bread; today there were only three. I remember when I kneaded those 12 batches by hand – two times for each batch. Today I let the Kitchenaid mixer do the work. My hands are not as strong and agile as they once were, but they got the job done. When I said that my fingers were locking up a bit, my husband said that maybe this should be my last year to make the bread. My reply was quick – “NO.”

My family waits almost 365 days for a taste of this bread. We only have it at Easter. It is tradition. I know that someday someone else will have to make the bread and carry on the tradition, but not yet. If it takes me longer to make the bread, it takes me longer. This is one time I am not worried about time.

 

10 thoughts on “Easter Bread

  1. This was writing with great love, Rita. I slowed down so I could linger here with the sounds and smells and sights. So sweet, a little sadness, too, but so much strength in continuing a great tradition – even if it looks a little different, takes a little more effort – just a beautiful memory here, Rita. I can almost taste that bread!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. While reading your post, I could smell the Easter bread my mother-in-law makes. I would NEVER suggest to her that it be the last year she makes it…and she’s in her 80s. (Is that selfish?)

    Blessed Easter to you and your family.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I loved reading your post. It smells of love! You lovingly kneading the bread for your family making it the way they like it! Sounds like a lovely day and great memories being made.

    Like

  4. Yummm…. as I read this post, I could easily imagine the wonderful smell of freshly baked bread. I especially liked how you described it as the aroma of love. 🙂 What a wonderful tradition for you and your family—I’m sure it means so much. Not only are you giving them the bread, but you’re also building beautiful memories for your loved ones. Happy Easter, Rita!

    Liked by 1 person

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