Easter Affair - Volume 1 - Issue #1

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ICONIC ORIGINS -The History of Easter


aster, the time where an empty seat in Christian churches worldwide is simply impossible to be found as they gather to relive and celebrate the persecution, death, and resurrection of the Lord Jesus Christ. Thus, it is also regarded as Christianity’s most important holiday. This year, Easter will be celebrated on the 1st April 2018. The fact that each year the date differs has led to the festival earning the name “moveable feast.” For Christian churches in the West, Easter is celebrated on the first Sunday following the full moon after the vernal equinox on March 21. As such, Easter is observed anywhere between March 22 and April 25 every year. Orthodox Christians use the Julian calendar to calculate when Easter will occur and typically celebrate the holiday a week or two after the Western churches, which follow the Gregorian calendar. So how did the religious festival earn its name? Well as anything with a historical origin, there is a certain

written by Daniela Nandlal phing into an event that was not only tied to religious symbolism. Crucifixes while still strongly associated with Easter started sharing public spaces with other non-religious symbols particularly in the Western hemisphere.

amount of ambiguity associated with it. Therefore, the exact origin of this religious feast day’s name is unknown. The Venerable Bede, an eighthcentury monk and scholar, suggested that the word might have come from the Anglo-Saxon Eostre or Eastre, a Teutonic goddess of spring and fertility. While others trace Easter to the

Latin term hebdomada alba, or white week, an ancient reference to Easter week and the white clothing donned by people who were baptized during that time. Through a translation error, the term later appeared as esostarum in Old High German, which eventually became Easter in English. Despite the sacredness associated with this festival, it soon began mor-

The Easter Bunny Before making appearances at Easter hunts and mall auditoriums, the first known mention of the bunny tradition appeared in 15th-century German literature. According to Discovery, the bunny has its roots in pre-13th-century pagan traditions. In fact, Discovery stated “bunnies, eggs, Easter gifts and fluffy, yellow chicks in gardening hats all stem from pagan roots. They were incorporated into the celebration of Easter separately from the Christian tradition of honoring the day Jesus Christ rose from the dead.” In addition to this, Time explained when the merging of various traditions took place by stating “Germanic, pagan, spring traditions and Chris-

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tian resurrection tradition was quickly melded together as Roman Catholicism became the dominant religion in the region around the 15th century. As a result, the Easter Bunny tradition in America takes its roots in the German settlers of Pennsylvania” Other sources such as History.com indicated that it is believed rabbits were associated with the Teutonic deity Eostra, the goddess of spring and fertility, for their especially high reproduction rate. Especially since eggs, and particularly their hatching, is another symbol of spring with roots in pagan tradition. Easter Eggs Although popular and sought after during the Easter season, it is unclear as to why eggs became associated with Easter. However, many ancient cultures viewed eggs as a symbol of life. So much so that Hindus, Egyptians, Persians, and Phoenicians believed the world began with an enormous egg. In an article published on the Christian website Crosswalk, it stated that the gift of eggs was done during Spring. Hence it is linked to Easter which is celebrated during that said season and is a representation of new life. “Persians, Greeks, and Chinese gave gifts of eggs during spring festivals in celebration of new life all around them. Other sources say people ate dyed eggs at spring festivals in Egypt, Persia, Greece, and Rome. While as in ancient Druid lore, the eggs of serpents were sacred and stood for life.” This belief that eggs represent new


life is also reinforced in an article published on Time titled “What is the Origin of the Easter Bunny?” The author stated “eggs are also representative of new life, and it’s believed that decorating eggs for Easter dates back to the 13th century. Hundreds of years ago, churches had their congregations abstain from eggs during Lent, allowing them to be consumed again on Easter.” According to History.com, in the 19th-century, Russian high society started exchanging ornately decorated eggs and even jewel encrusted eggs at Easter. Hot Cross Buns As for the delicious Hot Cross Buns

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served for breakfast on Good Friday, they too have a history and an ancient one as well. In 2010, then Church of England spokesman Steve Jenkins told the BBC: "They are fairly full of Christian symbolism. You have got the bread, as per the communion. You have got the spices that represent the spices Jesus was wrapped with in the tomb, and you have got the cross." However, as for the first recorded reference of the bun, it is said to have dated back to the early 1700s. This is according to The Poor Robin’s Almanac which states "Good Friday come this month, the old woman runs. With one or two a penny hot cross buns."

Another theory suggests that the hot cross buns originated in the 14th century in the city St Albans in Hertfordshire. According to this theory, a certain monk from St Albans Abbey, Brother Thomas Rocliffe, developed a recipe for Alban Buns which he distributed to the poor on Good Friday. Despite all of these assumptions, food historian Ivan Day told the BBC it is hard to pinpoint the origin of the bun, saying: "The trouble with any folk food, any traditional food, is that noone tended to write about them in the very early period." He added: "The buns were made in London during the 18th Century. But when you start looking for records or recipes earlier than that, you hit nothing." But perhaps the most interesting assumption of all is an old English folklore which believes that buns baked on Good Friday would never go moldy and were often seen as a good luck charm. These beliefs also encouraged people to use them for medicinal purposes as treatments for various ailments. A bun with healing properties is something we all can use. It is certainly safe to say that Easter has been transformed significantly since it was first celebrated hundreds of years ago. Nowadays, it can be deemed as a festival that has both religious and pagan roots with a not so mild threat of commercialization covered in milk chocolate waiting to be bought at almost every store.

Trinbagonian Easter Traditions


rinidad and Tobago is a special place. It takes the best the world has to offer from different cultures and amplifies it to make it its own. Our mixed society makes for exceptional cultural experiences that locals sometimes tend to neglect. With that said, we have some interesting practices which make us unique and at Easter time it is no different. Here are some experiences which are unique to Trinbago at Easter time. The Good Friday Bobolee Apart from a lavish breakfast featuring hot cross buns and delightful lunch with fish dishes as the centerpiece, a well-known tradition is the beating of the bobolee. On Good Friday, a stuffed effigy made in memory of Christ’s betrayer Judas Iscariot is made. Over time, bobolees have evolved, from being recreations of Judas to effigies of public figures. These effigies are mostly in the image of celebrities the public is aggrieved with. Nowadays, these bobolees are mostly found in the country’s rural 4

cession sites such as Mount St. Benedict and San Fernando Hill for Stations of the Cross. A grand reenactment of Christ’s persecution and crucifixion proceeds up the hill while prayers are recited and mournful hymns sung. The procession is followed by Holy Mass before attendees proceed unto other aspects of their personal holiday celebration.

areas. Yet, the biggest bobolee celebration takes place in Maraval where there is an annual Good Friday Bobolee procession which often culminates in a bobolee wedding. Good Friday Processions Catholics in particular get up before the crack of dawn to head to popular pro-

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Kite Flying at Savannah Kite flying has become more of a family pastime where the kids can go out and have fun. However, there was a lot of religious symbolism behind the practice in the past. Raising a kite was supposed to replicate Christ’s ascension into Heaven post resurrection from death. As such, many kites were squared or diamond shaped with a wooden cross brace. The cross struts on the kite symbolized Jesus’ death on the cross. Many do not celebrate the importance of the pastime as such, but would still buy (a few still make) kites to be flown on Easter weekend. The Queens Park Savannah draws

the largest number of kite fliers and a local radio station even hosts an annual kite flying competition which draws hundreds to the area. Camping Camping is another cherished Easter pastime which is especially popular with the Trinidad’s East Indian community. During this vacation period, hundreds of families converge on various camping sites (usually around beaches and rivers) to cook and bond through fishing and various other activities. Horse Racing Horse racing enthusiasts flock to the country’s only thoroughbred racing track for the Easter Guineas on Easter Monday. Triple Crown action takes place at the Santa Rosa race track in Arima and some women still come decked out in lavish colonial dress complete with broad hats or Easter bonnets. This is the biggest race day in Trinidad. Similarly, goat and crab racing provide quite the spectacle in the sister isle.

7 Spectacular Global Easter Pastimes written by Daniela Nandlal


or some, Easter brings about downtime from routine schedules such as work and school, while offering the chance to catch up on religious obligations and possibly a bit of kite flying. From a sacred perspective, it is deemed the most important and oldest festival of the Christian church… celebrating the resurrection of Jesus Christ. However, celebrations vary worldwide. From Easter bonnets to street parades each celebration offers a unique approach in commemorating the festival. Let’s explore some of them.

the town of Haux, every year on Easter Monday, around 10,000 people gather to make a giant omelette, using 15,000 fresh eggs, a four-meter pan, 40 cooks, and extra long sticks. It is said to have become a tradition based on Napoleon and his army having travelled through the south of France where they stopped in a small town

1. France Like many other historically Catholic countries, France is a big fan of Easter. In fact, many of France’s traditions during Pâques (Easter) stem from Old Catholic customs. However, one of their more bizarre celebrations includes making an omelette large enough to feed an army. In 6

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and ate omelettes. Napoleon liked it so much that he ordered the townspeople to gather their eggs and make a ginormous omelette for his army the next day. 2. Spain Locally known as Semana Santa (Holy Week), Easter is the most important celebration in Spain.

The country’s biggest Easter celebrations take place in Seville and the city comes to life with thousands of pilgrims gathering to witness the city’s extravagant pasos. A paso is an enormous float adorned with life-sized wooden statues of biblical characters, designed especially for religious processions. In Seville, they are considered genuine artistic masterpieces, some of them dating back as far as the 16th century. 3. Indonesia Despite having a predominantly Muslim population, Portuguese missionaries brought Christianity to Indonesia around 1534. Thus, the current estimated amount of Catholics is said to be 7 million. Celebrations in the main cities such as Jakarta, Surabaya and Manado have somewhat mimicked westernized customs. However, in other parts of Indonesia, the celebration is done in more


unique ways. For instance, Kure (Latin word ‘currere’ which means to run or to walk) is an Easter tradition celebrated by the community of Kote in the town of Noemuti, North Central Timor, Nusa Tenggara Timur. The ritual commences with the purifying of crucifixes and statues of Jesus Christ and the Mother Mary. It ends with the offerings of money, fruits, vegetables and palm dedicated to God. These offerings are later distributed to the pilgrims, prayer groups and other attendees of the ritual.

Furthermore, one of their traditions bears resemblance to Halloween. Children dress up as Easter witches; clad in discarded clothes, gaily-coloured headscarves and red-painted cheeks. They go from house to house in the neighbourhood and present the occupants with paintings and drawings in the hope of getting sweets in return. 7. Brazil Easter is known as Pascoa in Brazil and since the country boasts of the largest Roman Catholic population in the world (with 123 million followers) it’s no surprise that this particular occasion is celebrated with immense grandeur and splendour. Worshipping nature is one of the major aspects of Easter celebrations in Brazil. There are also several plays and festivities such as singing and dancing taking placing during this time. Another tradition is centred on the Macela flower. This particular flower only blooms during the Lenten season. Churchgoers take the flower to mass, seeking the blessing of the priest. The flower is then used as a medicine. Another major part of their celebration is 'Pacoca.' It is a special food that is prepared in every Brazilian household. Some other Brazilian delicacies include clip fish, chocolate Easter eggs and Easter ring cakes.

4. Florence, Italy On Easter Sunday every year, Florence celebrates the religious holiday with The Scoppio del Carro, or the "Explosion of the Cart" which dates back over 350 years. A huge wagon built in 1622 is pulled by a pair of oxen decorated with garlands through the streets of Florence until it reaches the cathedral. From there, ‘Gloria’ is sung inside the cathedral and the Archbishop sends a dove-shaped rocket into the cart, igniting a large fireworks display. 5. Germany Easter is one of the most anticipated holidays in Germany, not only for its religious representation, but because it also marks the start of spring after a traditionally harsh winter. Unlike some western celebrations where there are Easter egg hunts and the ultimate goal is to find the hidden eggs, the opposite takes place in Germany. In the weeks prior to Easter, bright multicoloured eggs are displayed on


trees for all to see. The colours are said to represent sunlight and growth. Besides Easter eggs, the rabbit is also a popular Easter icon. It symbolizes fertility and was first mentioned in German writings in the 16th century.

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6. Sweden While in many countries Easter is a religious holiday, it has become a secular one in Sweden with most people celebrating it at home with their families and relatives.

Have you been fortunate enough to experience any of these? If not, are you willing to visit any one of these countries to be part of their Easter celebrations? Maybe you can meet us in France for a bite of that gigantic omelette.



hough it's definitely not the most fun thing about the season, cleaning a little before the holidays can make things a lot less stressful than trying to scramble to do everything at once.

bristles with a cloth dipped in warm soapy water to degrease that area. Manage the Microwave - In the microwave, boil a cup of water with a few slices of lemon in it for one minute. The steam softens stuck-on food, while the lemon water can be used with a sponge to wipe away grease and residue.

Cleaning your Precious Knickknacks If you have a great collection of knick knacks that you love to display, but hate to clean, here's some good news: there's a quick and easy way to clean your figurines. Simply place your knickknacks inside the kitchen sink and spray them with window cleaner. Move them to a paper towel to air dry. This works for glass, china, and glazed figurines. KITCHEN Tackle the Fridge - Clear out food and leftovers that are past their prime. Wipe down shelves and make room for new items. Wipe down the handles and doors with Multi-Surface cleaner or vinegar. It gently cleans even stainless steel with a streak-free shine and a fresh, clean scent. Declutter - Clear everything off the counters that isn't involved in cooking. Put whatever has been slowly piling up, like mail and magazines, in piles: throw away, keep and recycle. This will make 10

BATHROOM Let the Light In - Take down your bathroom light fixtures and clean them with glass wipes. Dust off your light bulbs too -- you'll be surprised at how much brighter the bathroom looks when you're done.

clearing the clutter more manageable. Work From the Top Down - Start by dusting the tops of cabinets. Then wipe down the cabinet doors, followed by countertops, lower cabinet doors, then the floors. Clean the Stovetop - Crumbs can build up in the space between the stove and the countertop. Use a stiff brush to loosen and remove them in no time. Once the crumbs are gone, wrap the

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Sweep first, then mop - Vacuum or sweep the floors, using the crevice tool to get behind sinks and toilets and to get into corners. This will clear the floor of hair and dust before you wipe down the baseboards and mop the floor, leaving a clean and shiny floor. Soap Up the Sink - Use an old toothbrush to get behind the sink faucet and knobs, and don't forget the sink pedestal or lower cabinets where dust, hair and makeup can build up. Mind Your Medicine Cabinet - Yes, guests will peek. Tidy things up, dispose of old medications and stash items

you'd rather not be seen. Spruce Up - Fresh, neatly folded towels, scented hand soaps and a candle go a long way toward making a bathroom look and feel welcoming. Clear Reflection - Make sure the mirror is free of mascara smudges and water spots by wiping it down with Window cleaner. LIVING ROOM Freshen Up Fabrics - Get pet hair off of upholstery with your favorite pet hair remover. Vacuum upholstered surfaces, then spot clean and use a fabric freshener where needed. Add a few pillows or throws for a fresh look guests will love. Make It Shine - Dust can build up on your most valuable electronics including computers, televisions and other items in your living room. Whether it's electronics Spray, dry cloths, or wipes, these formulas remove dust, dirt and grime from household electronics, leaving behind only a streak-free shine. Get Rid of Smudges - Doorknobs, light switches, phones and more can get smudges and fingerprints. Give them a good cleaning with a glass and surface wipe -- this is a great job for the kids to tackle.

Why Fasting May Be Good For You


he post-Carnival period brings with it an era of solemnity and sacrifice known as Lent. Many Christian Trinbagonians swear by the tenets of restraint (which usually surround food intake) at this time. People abstain from meats, alcohol and other pleasures until Easter Sunday arrives and they can once again fully gorge on traditional Trini ‘sweet hand’ food. Some go as far as abstaining from food entirely, surviving only on liquids “Kublalsingh style.” This can seem like torture, but such fasts are actually beneficial to us. Here’s how fasting can actually be a good thing. Fasting promotes Natural HGH Secretion Human growth hormone, or HGH, is naturally produced by the body, but remains active in the bloodstream for just a few minutes. It’s been effectively used to treat obesity and help build muscle mass, important for burning fat. HGH also helps increase muscle strength, which can help improve your workouts, too. Combine these together and you have an effective fatburning machine on your hands. 12

digestion and promote healthy bowel function, thus improving your metabolic function. Fasting Aids Detoxification When no food is consumed by the body, the body turns to the fat deposits for energy, which releases chemicals from the fatty reserves and results in the eradication of these chemicals through the organs. It has been well favored by Ayurvedic therapy for cleansing and correcting the imbalances in the body.

Fasting Encourages Better Insulin Sensitivity Fasting causes the body to secrete less insulin because you’re not giving yourself steady doses of sugar. Lower levels of this hormone leads to increased sensitivity in those with insulin resistance. Excessive fat stores seem to contribute to this resistance. Some research points to excessive fat in the body, blood, and diet as a contributor to insulin resistance by preventing it

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from doing its job, i.e., opening the pores on your cell membranes to allow sugar to pass into them. Fasting Speeds Up The Metabolism Intermittent fasting gives your digestive system a rest, and this can energize your metabolism to burn through calories more efficiently. If your digestion is poor, this can affect your ability to metabolize food and burn fat. Intermittent fasts can regulate your

Fasting Reduces Oxidative Stress and Inflammation This is pretty much linked to the previous tip, but studies show that intermittent fasting can reduce oxidative damage and inflammation in the body. This contributes to promoting the healing process in the body. When food is no longer present in the stomach, the body focuses on other vital functions like metabolic activity and the immune system, rather than digestion which is not necessary until the next meal. This should have benefits against aging and development of numerous diseases.

Embellish Your Easter Table Settings With Seasonal Style


reen represents the hope of Christ's resurrection and eternal life. In fact, after Easter is over, priests begin wearing green vestments to mass. That is why green is one of the most common colours for Easter Sunday dĂŠcor. Fancify your feast by adorning your abode with great table settings. These green choices are just right for your dining scene.

These green pastel accents among dry brown signify both the elements of death and resurrection.


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Fresh flowers, dyed eggs and a bit of bright ribbon is just enough to take this table setting to the next level

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A simple note can add a personal touch to your Easter experience


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A touch of fresh real greenery freshens up this simple, but symbolic table setting

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Easter Recipes


n Trinidad, many of us treat Easter Sunday lunch like we do Christmas. It’s an extravagant affair with a variety of food choices aimed at making Lenten fast a distant memory. Here we share some Easter recipes from around the world that can contribute to your delicious buffet.

HOT CROSS BUNS Ingredients 3/4 cup warm water (110 degrees F/45 degrees C) 3 tablespoons butter 1 tablespoon instant powdered milk 1/4 cup white sugar 3/8 teaspoon salt 1 egg 1 egg white 3 cups all-purpose flour 1 tablespoon active dry yeast 3/4 cup dried currants 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon 1 egg yolk 2 tablespoons water 1/2 cup confectioners' sugar 1/4 teaspoon vanilla extract 2 teaspoons milk Directions Put warm water, butter, skim milk powder, 1/4 cup sugar, salt, egg, egg white, flour, and yeast in bread maker and start on dough program. When 5 minutes of kneading are left,

add currants and cinnamon. Leave in machine till double. Punch down on floured surface, cover, and let rest 10 minutes. Shape into 12 balls and place in a greased 9 x 12 inch pan. Cover and let rise in a warm place till double, about 35-40 minutes. Mix egg yolk and 2 tablespoons water. Brush on balls. Bake at 375 degrees F (190 degrees C) for 20 minutes. Remove from pan immediately and cool on wire rack. To make crosses: mix together confectioners' sugar, vanilla, and milk.

Place glaze in a piping bag or a sandwich bag with the corner snipped off; pipe a cross onto each roll.

EASTER BREAKFAST CASSEROLE Ingredients 1/2 pound bacon 2 tablespoons diced onion 2 tablespoons diced green bell pepper 1-1/2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese 4 eggs 1 cup milk 1/2 (16 ounce) package frozen hash

brown potatoes, thawed Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease a 7x11 inch casserole dish. Fry the bacon in a large, deep skillet over medium-high heat until evenly browned, about 10 minutes. Drain on a paper towel-lined plate. Crumble. In a large bowl beat together eggs and milk. Mix in cheese, bacon, onion and green pepper. Stir in the thawed hash browns. Pour mixture into prepared casserole. Cover with aluminum foil and bake in preheated oven for 45 minutes. Uncover and bake for another 30 minutes until eggs have set.

SLOW COOKER HAM Ingredients 2 cups packed brown sugar 1 (8 pound) cured, bone-in picnic ham Directions Spread about 1 1/2 cups of brown sugar on the bottom of the slow cooker crock. Place the ham flat side down into the slow cooker - you might have to trim it a little to make it fit. Use your hands to rub the remaining brown sugar onto the ham. Cover, and cook on Low for 8 hours. ww w .a m gt t .c om

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1 14 ounce can cannellini beans, undrained 1 14ounce can garbanzo beans, undrained 1 cup 2 cups hominy, drained 1 2 cups sweet corn Ground paprika, to taste Ground cumin, to taste Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Ingredients 6 eggs 1/2 stalk celery, finely chopped 1/4 onion, finely chopped 1/4 cup mayonnaise Salt to taste 1 dash hot sauce Paprika, for garnish Directions Place eggs in a medium saucepan and cover with cold water. Bring water to a boil and immediately remove from heat. Cover and let eggs stand in hot water for 10 to 12 minutes. Remove from hot water, cool and peel. Cut eggs in half. Remove yolks and place in a medium bowl. Mash together with celery, onion, mayonnaise, salt and hot pepper sauce. Stuff the egg white halves with the egg yolk mixture. Sprinkle eggs with paprika. Chill covered in the refrigerator until serving.

CAPIROTADA Ingredients 3 cups water 3 cups brown sugar, divided 2 cinnamon sticks 2 cups butter, softened 2 loaves sliced white bread, toasted 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon, or to taste 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg, or to taste 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves, or to taste 2 cups raisins 2 cups peanuts 1 pound shredded sharp Cheddar cheese


Garnishes Sliced hard boiled eggs Chopped Cilantro Fried sweet plantains sliced avocado

Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Combine water, 2 cups brown sugar, and cinnamon sticks together in a saucepan; bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer, stirring occasionally, until sugar is dissolved and liquid has reduced into a syrup, about 15 minutes. Remove cinnamon sticks from syrup using a slotted spoon. Spread butter onto each toasted bread slice. Make 1 layer of buttered bread in a deep casserole dish or oven-proof stockpot. Sprinkle cinnamon, nutmeg, and cloves over bread layer. Sprinkle 1/4 the raisins, 1/4 the peanuts, 1/4 the remaining brown sugar, and 1/4 the Cheddar cheese over bread layer. Repeat layering with remaining ingredients. Pour cinnamon syrup over entire dish; cover with aluminum foil. Bake in the preheated oven until

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cooked through, about 30 minutes. Cool for 20 minutes before serving.

FANESCA Ingredients 1 pound salt cod, boiled for 12 minutes, drained, cut into about 2-inch pieces 1 lemon, juiced 1cup long grain white rice 1cup lentils 2 cups milk, plus extra as needed Âź cup unsalted peanuts, toasted 2 tablespoons vegetable oil 1 cup yellow onion, finely diced 3 cloves garlic, minced 3 tablespoons chopped chadon beni 2 cups pumpkin (calabaza/zapallo), cooked and cubed (reserve the water) 2 cups yellow squash, cooked and cubed (reserve the water) 1 14 ounce can lima beans, undrained 1 14 ounce can red kidney beans undrained

DIRECTIONS Cook the cod fish in abundant water plus the lemon juice. Bring to a boil and simmer for 15 minutes. Remove the fish from the water, and discard the water. Meanwhile, cook the rice in 3 cups of water. It should be soggy and tender. Set aside. Cook the lentils in 2 cups of salted water. Drain and reserve the cooking liquid. Blend the milk and peanuts and set aside. In a large Dutch oven or stew pot, make a refrito by heating 1 tablespoon of oil over medium heat, and adding the onion, garlic, cilantro, paprika and seasoning with salt, pepper and cumin. Cook for about 5 minutes. Add the peanut and milk puree to the refrito, and cook for 5 minutes more. Add the soggy, tender rice. Stir and mash the rice with the ladle to thicken the soup. Cook for 5 additional minutes. Add the cooked pumpkin, yellow

squash, plus 1 cup of each of the cooking liquids. Mash the squashes with the ladle to thicken the soup. Add all the beans with the liquid, plus the hominy and corn, drained. Bring to a boil. Lower the heat to medium and simmer for 30 minutes, stirring every so often so the soup doesn't stick to the bottom of the pot. The Fanesca soup is thick and hearty, but if you notice it is drying too fast, or prefer a lighter soup, add more milk, about 1 to 2 cups, depending on your preference. Meanwhile, in a skillet, heat the remaining 1 tablespoon oil and lightly sautĂŠ the cod fish pieces on all sides until golden and firm. Taste the Fanesca for seasoning, and adjust the flavor by adding more salt, pepper and cumin if necessary. To serve: in a bowl, place a few pieces (depending on your preference) of the sauteed cod. Ladle some Fanesca over it. Garnish the soup with additional chopped cilantro, slices of hard-boiled eggs, or slices of avocado. Serve with fried sweet plantains. 22

CHOCOLATE COVERED EASTER EGGS Ingredients 1/2 cup butter, softened 1 teaspoon vanilla extract 1 (8 ounce) package cream cheese, softened 2 1/2 pounds confectioners' sugar 1 cup creamy peanut butter (optional) 1 cup flaked coconut (optional) 1 cup unsweetened cocoa powder (optional) 2 cups semisweet chocolate pieces 1 tablespoon shortening or vegetable oil (optional) Directions In a large bowl, mix together the butter, vanilla, and cream cheese. Stir in confectioners' sugar to make a workable dough. For best results, use your hands for mixing. Divide the dough into four parts. Leave one of the parts plain. To the second part, mix in peanut butter. Mix coconut into the third part, and cocoa powder into the last part. Roll

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each type of dough into egg shapes, and place on a waxed paper-lined cookie sheet. Refrigerate until hard, at least an hour. Melt chocolate chips in a heat-proof bowl over a pan of simmering water. Stir occasionally until smooth. If the chocolate seems too thick for coating, stir in a teaspoon of the shortening or oil until it thins to your desired consistency. Dip the chilled candy eggs in chocolate, and return to the waxed paper lined sheet to set. Refrigerate for 1/2 hour to harden.

BAKED SALMON FILLETS DIJON Ingredients 4 (4 ounce) fillets salmon 3 tablespoons prepared Dijon-style mustard Salt and pepper to taste 1/4 cup Italian-style dry bread crumbs Directions Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Line a shallow baking pan with aluminum foil. Place salmon skin-side down on foil.

Spread a thin layer of mustard on the top of each fillet, and season with salt and pepper. Top with bread crumbs, then drizzle with melted butter. Bake in a preheated oven for 15 minutes, or until salmon flakes easily with a fork.

STRAWBERRY SPINACH SALAD Ingredients 2 tablespoons sesame seeds 1 tablespoon poppy seeds 1/2 cup white sugar 1/2 cup olive oil 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar 1/4 teaspoon paprika 1/4 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce 1 tablespoon minced onion 10 ounces fresh spinach - rinsed, dried and torn into bite-size pieces 1 quart strawberries - cleaned, hulled and sliced 1/4 cup almonds, blanched and slivered Directions In a medium bowl, whisk together the sesame seeds, poppy seeds, sugar, olive oil, vinegar, paprika, Worces-

minutes. Meanwhile, combine lemon juice and 1/4 cup sugar in a small bowl. Remove bread from pan and drizzle with glaze. Cool on a wire rack.

tershire sauce and onion. Cover, and chill for one hour. In a large bowl, combine the spinach, strawberries and almonds. Pour dressing over salad, and toss. Refrigerate 10 to 15 minutes before serving.



Ingredients 4 cloves garlic, sliced 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary salt to taste ground black pepper to taste 5 pounds leg of lamb

Ingredients 1/3 cup melted butter 1 cup white sugar 3 tablespoons lemon juice 2 eggs 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour 1 teaspoon baking powder 1 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup milk 2 tablespoons grated lemon zest 1/2 cup chopped walnuts 1 cup fresh or frozen blueberries 2 tablespoons lemon juice 1/4 cup white sugar Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Lightly grease an 8x4 inch loaf pan. In a mixing bowl, beat together butter, 1 cup sugar, juice and eggs. Combine flour, baking powder and salt;

stir into egg mixture alternately with milk. Fold in lemon zest, nuts, and blueberries. Pour batter into prepared pan. Bake in preheated oven for 60 to 70 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into center of the loaf comes out clean. Cool bread in pan for 10

Directions Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Cut slits in the top of the leg of lamb every 3 to 4 inches, deep enough to push slices of garlic down into the meat. Salt and pepper generously all over the top of lamb, place several sprigs of fresh rosemary under and on top of the lamb. Place lamb on roasting pan. Roast in preheated oven until the lamb is cooked to your desired doneness, about 1 3/4 to 2 hours. Do not overcook the lamb, the flavor is best if meat is still slightly pink. Let rest at least 10 minutes before carving.

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Fun Family Bonding Activities For A Fit Vacation

ooking for a fun way to get the family to spend more quality time with each other? Why not try exercising. No, not boring crunches or weight-lifting; fun exercises that the whole family can enjoy as part of a team. With all the talk about families not spending enough time together, this is a great way for members to bond or for the love and unity to return to the family unit. Since the kids will be home for the Easter holidays, try these activities below.

of fun in your own backyard. Hide Easter eggs around the house, in your yard or on the playground. Let the kids hunt chocolate or candy eggs for a great reward when they are found. You can also use plastic eggs so they can continue hunting several days after Easter is over. The thrill of the hunt never fades and it is a great way to stay active while having fun.


Dance. Put your favourite record or video on and get to dancing! It doesn’t take much and dancing burns calories faster than running on a treadmill. Not to mention the fun and excitement from seeing your child’s dance moves.


Encourage active games. These include hop-scotch, jumping rope and even gymnastics. They not only keep your children active, but they promote strong bones.


Visit the Park or Zoo. Easter time usually has lots of fun additions at the zoo. You can also use this as a reward for positive work done by your child in End of Term Exams. The sights would encourage good conversation and an open park encourages running or the playing of outside games. You will get a good workout too just by following the kids around.


Learn a new activity together. This one would definitely provide some bonding time, particularly with mother and daughter or father and son. For parents with teenage girls, exercise together; follow a yoga class on YouTube. For teenage boys, try some martial arts moves.


Go Egg Hunting. The egg hunt is probably an Easter tradition you enjoyed as a child and believe it or not, there are still Easter egg hunts in some parts of Trinidad and Tobago. You can find one near you and enjoy the fun with other families. If you are not able to attend one, you can have plenty


Plant an Easter Garden. Let one of your Easter traditions brighten up your yard. Many Trinbagonians believe in planting a tree at Easter. Gardening Celebrate the arrival of spring by planting a garden with your kids for Easter. Follow a regional gardening guide to enjoy everything the opportunity with your family while doing the digging, bending and other workouts that gardening involves.

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Interesting Easter Facts You didn’t Know

ou’ve read about the historical genesis of the holiday and the origin of several local and international customs, but these lesser known facts could be the info that gives you extra ammo for your holiday chats.


Many areas have Easter carols that are played on the holiday much like the songs associated with Christmas. Songs like The Easter Parade and Here Comes Peter Cottontail are firm holiday favorites for children.

with Easter because the twists of the pretzel were thought to resemble arms crossing in prayer.

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AD and BC were invented in 525 AD by Dionysius Exiguus to determine the correct date of

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The largest ever Easter egg hunt was in Florida, where 9,753 children searched for 501,000 eggs.


Lilies are a flower often associated with Easter. As they represent grace and purity, many churches and homes have chosen to decorate with the white lily for the holiday. In fact, they’re commonly known best as “Easter lilies.” The petals face downward, which is in honour of Jesus.

mas Day to “Family Day”, Holy Easter Week to “Tourism Week”, and Epiphany to “Children’s Day”



In 1919 after becoming an officially secular country, Uruguay renamed the holidays of Christ-

Two rival churches in Greece celebrate Easter by firing over 100,000 rockets at each other.

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Tasmania has an extra day of Easter – Easter Tuesday. It is only celebrated in Tasmania. Easter is not only about eggs, candies and chocolate. In the old days, pretzels were associated

The tallest chocolate Easter egg ever was made in Italy in 2011. At 10.39 metres in height and 7,200 kg in weight, it was taller than a giraffe and heavier than an elephant!


The word “Easter” occurs only once in the King James Bible (Acts 12:4). Elsewhere in the King James Version, the word “Passover” is used.

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Must-See Easter Movie Classics


very Easter, Trinidad and Tobago’s television stations are inundated with movies that befit the holiday being celebrated. We decided to take a look at some of the Easter classics that should be a part of your family’s Easter must-see TV additions. There is sure to be something for everyone.

Roman prince whose powerful friendturned-foe banishes him to a slave ship. Revenge awaits… Ben-Hur's tribulations are interspersed with scenes of Jesus Christ’s life and death.

Ben-Hur Not to be confused with corny remake in 2017, Ben Hur (1959) is a classic piece of film. Outstanding set design in a golden era before cartoonish CGI; acting intensity and incredible chariot chases made this movie especially epic. What it's about? Ben-Hur, played by the legendary Charlton Heston, is a

Jesus Christ Superstar For those seeking a non-traditional take on the life of Jesus, this 1973 musical is likely to float your boat. In this rock musical adaptation of the life of Christ, Andrew Lloyd Weber shines light on Jesus’ vocal chops. Hit songs from the film include “I Don't Know How to Love Him,” sung by a remorseful Mary Magdalene. King of Kings The esteemed Leonard Martin celebrated this piece of cinema as "grandly 28

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filmed” and “deeply moving." While the subject matter has been approached on numerous occasions since; this powerful and critically-acclaimed story of Jesus told in a strikingly beautiful visual style is hard to match. The 1961 film, which is narrated by Orson Wells contains a memorably moving scene of the Sermon on the Mount. It Stars Oscarnominees and Emmy-winner Rip Torn as Judas and Robert Ryan as John the Baptist with Jeffrey Hunter as Christ. It's the Easter Beagle, Charlie Brown In this 1974 flick about the Peanuts gang, Linus tries to convince everyone the Easter Beagle will make the holiday a success when he arrives on Easter morning. After Linus' previous belief in the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown and co. don't buy in to his ideas. Even Sally has trouble keeping the faith in her "sweet baboo" following her previous disillusionment at Halloween. Of course, by the time Easter morning arrives, so does the Easter Beagle (Snoopy), just in time to distribute eggs. The Passion of the Christ Directed by Mel Gibson and starring Jim Caviezel as Jesus, the film covers the final 12 hours of Jesus' life and was controversial for its use of language and depiction of violence. The entire dialogue is performed in the ancient languages of Aramaic, Latin and Hebrew, with Jesus' arrest, trial, torture, crucifixion and res-

urrection shown in graphic detail. "The Passion of the Chris" is still the most successful non-English language film ever at the box office, grossing more than $600 million worldwide. Bugs Bunny’s Easter Funnies Hello, Bugs Bunny? Easter Bunny? It’s so obvious. This “movie” is basically a clip show, using segues and fades to tie a bunch of previously released Looney Toon classics into an Easter story. If you know the original cartoons it feels kind of cheap and lazy — those cartoons were fantastic on their own. However, it’s still funny and clever, and a great way to introduce the kids to cartoons from back in the day. Actual “back in the day” may vary.


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