(Easter Sunday, 1956)
When we contemplate Easter, what are our thoughts as Christians? First and foremost, is the miraculous resurrection of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. And to celebrate that epitome of our faith, humans have devised various symbols and customs. Since spring is arriving around Easter time, icons of the season enter into Easter celebrations.
I have not investigated where the Easter Bunny came from, but I don’t really care. It is as it is. He may have come from a pagan background, but so what. Today he is a harbinger of spring arriving on Easter Day. It makes our Christian holiday palatable to non-Christians so that, serendipitously, they are also celebrating Easter even though they do not recognize it as such. As God said, His Word will never return unto Him void. Whether we have Easter parades with Easter bonnets or egg hunts on the town square, they are associated with Easter, the day Christ rose from the dead.
Many of the customs we followed in my childhood, a few short years ago in my memory, are no longer in vogue. Everyone always had a brand new outfit to wear on Easter from hat to gloves to footwear. Ladies wore a corsage. My siblings and I had three Easter baskets each which we reused year after year. We colored eggs on Easter eve. Then we left them and the empty baskets for the Bunny to complete and hide. The hunt to find the baskets and eggs was a special thrill. The Bunny filled the baskets with jelly beans, small chocolate eggs, one large decorated egg, perhaps an Easter trinket, and a homemade chocolate egg. My great aunt, who lived next door, found this recipe for fudge in the local newspaper in the 1950s and adapted it for making Easter eggs.
Shape fudge into eggs, place on a tray covered with wax paper and chill thoroughly. (They will have to be reshaped as they cool). Coat each egg with melted chocolate. Place in refrigerator to harden. I find it easiest to put the chocolate coating on the bottom of the egg first and chill it upside down to harden before coating the top side of the egg.
Chocolate eggs and chocolate nut eggs: recipe as given, some with and some without nuts.
Peanut butter eggs: recipe as given without nuts, and add some large scoops of peanut butter to the fudge. (no exact quantity – “to taste”)
Coconut eggs: use vanilla pudding and add coconut and almond flavoring.
For fudge: spread into a square pan, let cool, and cut into squares.
I have used both bakers chocolate and chocolate chips for the chocolate covering of the eggs. I make some with dark chocolate and some with milk chocolate. Finally, if you have any energy and creativity left, use a stiff decorator’s icing in a variety of colors to add flowers or other decorations on the top of the eggs.
Whatever we do to celebrate the day, Easter is the shining day of Christ’s resurrection affording us the opportunity to live in heaven with him which happens by simple faith in His fabulous grace and mercy for us.
My church choir ended our Easter Extravaganza performance with this song and dance last Sunday. I have been singing and dancing it for a month. Join in the celebration! Rise Up!