When I was growing up, I believed in many a magical thing. There was Santa Claus, the Tooth Fairy, and of course the Easter Bunny, and each made their rounds at my house. Easter morning I would always wake up to a big Easter basket wrapped in cellophane with a big bow. Inside was small toys, maybe a Barbie, bubbles, kites, and oh yes, there was candy! Allegedly, the Easter Bunny hopping down the bunny trail left those goodies to all good girls and boys.
The night before Easter sunday, my mother always helped me dye my eggs. White vinegar poured into small bowls along with colored tablets, tiny hands trying to roll an egg into the concoction with just a wire twisted into the shape of a spoon usually resulted in a mess. It was an unspoken rule that every kid took only the poorly decorated eggs to church that morning because there would be kids who crawled out of the hollers and showed up with just their open hands looking to win the egg hunt. Sunday morning most mother’s including my own dressed us Lil Debbie for church. Colored straw hats, frilly dresses, thick tights, and patent leather shoes were some of the most popular frocks. Boys were dressed in little polyester suits with wedge haircuts, bowl bangs cut right above the brows. My goodness, what a sight!
Restless in the church pews, I remember my mother would always threaten me with, “…you wait til we get home!” under her breath as the preacher spoke of the resurrection. It was hard to sit still thinking about the big egg hunt, who would find the lucky egg, and of course me standing on my tippy toes trying to peep out the window as the deacons hid the eggs up on the graveyard. I was ready to climb those red clay banks and snatch up some eggs!
When the hunt was over, I would come slinging my basket filled eggs, tights tattered and torn, and some of the cutest shoes scuffed. My mother was never pleased and couldn’t wait to get to the car. Little did she know, I was just warming up.
I hope y’all have a blessed Easter weekend If you have a recipe you would like to share, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Southern Carrot Cake
2 c. chopped walnuts
2 1/2 c. self-rising flour
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1 tsp. baking soda
2 c. sugar
1 c. vegetal oil
4 large eggs
3 c. grated carrots
Cream cheese frosting
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 degrees Arrange walnuts in a single layer in a shallow pan. Bake 12 minutes or until toasted and fragrant. Sift flour, cinnamon, and baking soda. Line bottoms of 3 lightly greased (w/shortening) 9-inch round cake pans with parchment paper; lightly grease the paper as well. Beat sugar and oil at medium speed with an electric mixer until smooth. Add eggs, 1 at a time, beating until blended after each addition. Gradually add flour mixture, beating at low speed just until blended aftwr each addition. Fold in carrots and 1 c. walnuts. Spoon batter into prepared pans. Bake 35-40 minutes or until a wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean. Cool in pans on wire racks 10 minutes; remove from pans to wire racks. Carefully remove parchment paper, and discard. Completely cool, about 1 hour. Spread cream cheese frosting between layers and on top and sides of cake; sprinkle remaining 1 c. toasted walnuts onto cake as desired.