Easter was never a big holiday in my family. When we were little kids I remember baskets with candy lovingly prepared by Mom, and hunting for eggs. Folks at church were maybe a bit more dressed up than normal, but the old school Scottish Presbyterians of Memphis were not ostentatious. I know a lot of people for whom the holiday is bigger than Thanksgiving, with massive dinners and traveling across the country to be with family. And of course, the annual debate over lamb vs. ham.
I found myself alone for Easter, but it was not a sad occasion. I'm always happy to fill the house with the sounds of classic jazz and putter around in the kitchen. I had the ingredients on hand to make a decent seasonal dinner. I started out with a broccoli-spinach soup. Dead simple: a handful of frozen chopped spinach, a handful of frozen broccoli, thawed in a pint of chicken broth. I added wine and cream, mixed it with the immersion blender, and added a dash of pepper and nutmeg toward the end.
Friends always rave over main courses that I fix, but somehow I've always been really excited when a soup turns out just right. This one was so delicious that I ended up eating two bowls.
I went for a simple lamb shoulder chop with a peach-white wine sauce. I generally prefer shoulder ground or slow cooked, but often a shoulder chop is a good deal if you just want to enjoy some lamb without making a big production.
For the wine I served the 2006 Anne Amie Cuvée A Amrita from the Willamette Valley of Oregon. $15. There seems to be conflicting information out there regarding the grapes and ratios, but among those listed are Chardonnay, Müller-Thurgau, Pinot Grigio, Riesling, and Viognier. The wine has a delicate apricot nose, slightly sweet, rich full fruit flavors. Spend some time with this one and you'll encounter peach, pear, and various floral elements as well. Oregon white wines are so nice, and need more attention.