An Easter Celebration With My Family

A white bowl of vegan choc-nut balls on a wooden table.

This post includes a recipe for Vegan Choc-Nut Balls

Easter is a special occasion in my family.  It is a celebration.  This year I will spend Good Friday with my in-laws and Easter Sunday with my sons.  Even though I don’t go to church any more, it is hard to break away from family traditions.  My children appreciate the effort I make to create a joyous atmosphere.

Easter Traditions – Good Friday  

I grew up in a household where Roman Catholic traditions were honoured.  Therefore, we fasted during Lent and did not eat meat on Fridays.  We went to church nearly every day during Lent. Good Friday was a solemn occasion of prayer and fasting to reflect that Jesus died for our sins on the cross.

Traditionally Good Friday is the one day of the year that all the shops are closed in Australia. Many Australians keep to the tradition of eating fish on Good Friday, even when they are not Catholic.  My in-laws have their main Easter celebration on Good Friday. They don’t exactly fast though – there will be prawns and salmon on the menu! 

Easter Sunday Celebration

Easter Sunday was the main day for celebration in my family.  This was to reflect Jesus rising from the dead.  My parents would stop at the corner shop on the way to church and buy us one Easter egg each.  These days the shops are full of every kind of chocolate Easter egg and people spend a fortune on them.  It has become more commercialised like Christmas.

I have always enjoyed creating a special Easter for my family. I love cooking their favourite food, and hiding mini easter eggs for them to find.  My husband and I are empty nesters so these family gatherings are very special to us.

Making Vegan Easter Food

My son’s girlfriend is vegan and one of my sons is vegetarian.  I have been searching for vegan recipes so that I can make some easter treats for them.  I like to be inclusive and try to make everything vegan so that everyone can eat it.  It gets a bit tricky at times.  

There are some dishes that can’t be adjusted to make vegan versions, like pavlova.  But I have found some chocolate recipes that I can make or adapt, including the recipe below.  We will have  roast chicken, and I’ll make a roast cauliflower for them. I’ll bake vegan bread and have almond milk, vegan margarine and vegan snacks on hand.

A white bowl containing vegan choc-nut balls on a grey bench.  Easy healthy recipe to have at your Easter Celebration
An easy healthy recipe for vegan choc-nut balls. May be adapted if you are not vegan.
A white bowl containing vegan choc-nut balls on a grey bench

Vegan Choc-Nut Balls

These vegan choc-nut balls are so delicious the whole family will enjoy them. They contain lots of protein so have them after work-outs.
Prep Time 10 mins
Refrigeration time 10 mins
Total Time 20 mins
Course Snack
Cuisine Healthy, Vegan, Vegetarian
Servings 40 balls
Calories 66 kcal

Ingredients
  

  • 1 1/2 cup Rolled Oats
  • 2 tbsp cocoa powder
  • 1/2 cup chocolate protein powder
  • 1 cup vegan nut butter
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup
  • 1/4 teaspoon vanilla essence
  • 45 grams vegan chocolate chips Chop up small bar of vegan chocolate

Instructions
 

  • Stir together the oats, cocoa powder and protein powder in a large bowl.  Stir in the nut butter, maple syrup, and vanilla.  Stir until combined.  A food processor may be used. Add the chocolate chips and stir through.
  • Line a flat container with kitchen greaseproof papers.  Use a small cookie scoop to form balls.  Roll in between hands.  
  • Refrigerate for at least 10 minutes.  May be frozen.

Notes

If you are making a non-vegan recipe honey may be substituted for maple syrup.
Keyword Healthy, Snack, Vegan, Vegetarian

Covid-19 continues to disrupt plans

The one concern this year is that a sudden lockdown could be on the cards which would prevent us from being together.  My son lives in Brisbane, where there has been an outbreak of Covid-19 cases.  My other son was going to go on a road trip to Sydney and Melbourne but the borders have closed again.  

Once again travel arrangements are up in the air and the local tourist industry is suffering.  It will be so good to see an end to this pandemic as the continual disruptions to normal life are getting beyond a joke. Meanwhile we wait to see if further restrictions will affect our Easter celebration. I hope not.

How do you celebrate Easter? Do any of your family have dietary needs that affect what you serve at special occasions? If you enjoyed this post, you may like to read:

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Easy Vegetable Soup Recipe

Vegetarian, Vegan

There is nothing more satisfying on a cold day than a warm bowl of soup. Unlike many vegetable soup recipes, this one has no added fat. A bowl of this soup is only 93 calories so you can eat it as a snack without spoiling your diet. When blended it is easily mistaken for pumpkin soup without the added cream! It is an easy way to add vegetables to your diet, and will provide approximately 2 serves of vegetables. The best part is, it is so easy to make and may be changed to suit your taste.

Easy Vegetable Soup Recipe

Ingredients

  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 100 grams dry red lentils
  • 1 leek
  • 500 grams pumpkin
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 1 litre vegetable stock
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

Method

Remove skin from pumpkin, carrots and potato. Chop all vegetables up

Into a large stockpot, put the soy sauce and leeks. Heat on high heat until soy is bubbling, then add the washed and strained lentils. Stir to stop it sticking on the bottom of the pot. Cook for 5 minutes

Pour in the stock and stir

Add all the vegetables and seasonings. Bring to the boil then simmer for an hour

Taste test as it cooks – you may want to add more seasonings. I usually use much more salt, pepper and paprika than this but that may not be to everyone’s taste. You could also add dried or fresh herbs to boost the flavour

Eat it just as it is, or blend it once cooled – it will look like pumpkin soup without the calories!

May be divided into 8 serves and frozen for lunches or quick meals

Recipe variations

You can add any other vegetables e.g. celery, potatoes, spinach, cauliflower, broccoli. I use up a lot of my vegetables that are getting a bit soft, just to use them up.

The vegetable stock may be substituted with chicken stock if you are not vegetarian.

Vegetable soup - vegetarian, vegan recipe

Nutrition information

Servings: 8

Calories – 93
  • Total fat 0.6g (1% daily value)
  • Saturated fat 0.1g (1%)
  • Cholesterol 0mg (0%)
  • Sodium 611mg (27%)
  • Total Carbohydrates 18.3g (7%)
  • Dietary fibre 5.3g (19%)
  • Total Sugars 3.6g
  • Protein 5g
  • Vitamin D 0mcg (0%)
  • Calcium 41mg (3%)
  • Iron 2mg (13%)
  • Potassium 484mg (10%)

The % Daily Value tells you how much a nutrient in a food serving contributes to a daily diet. 2000 calories a day is used for general nutrition advice

Easy Vegetable Soup

Easy Vegetable Soup

midlifestylist
Easy Vegetable Soup – Vegetarian, Vegan An easy, healthy soup recipe that is sure to please the whole family.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 1 hr
Total Time 1 hr 15 mins
Course Appetizer, Main Course, Side Dish, Soup
Cuisine American, Australian, British
Servings 8 people
Calories 93 kcal

Equipment

  • Large Saucepan with Lid
  • Sharp knife
  • Wooden Spoon
  • Vegetable Peeler
  • Blender (optional)
  • Measuring Jug and Spoons

Ingredients
  

  • 1 Tablespoon soy sauce
  • 100 grams dry red lentils
  • 1 leek
  • 500 grams pumpkin
  • 2 carrots
  • 1 sweet potato
  • 1 litre vegetable stock
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika

Instructions
 

  • Remove skin from pumpkin, carrots and potato. Chop all vegetables up
  • Into a large stockpot, put the soy sauce and leeks. Heat on high heat until soy is bubbling, then add the washed and strained lentils. Stir to stop it sticking on the bottom of the pot. Cook for 5 minutes
  • Pour in the stock and stir
  • Add all the vegetables and seasonings. Bring to the boil then simmer for an hour
  • Taste test as it cooks – you may want to add more seasonings. I usually use much more salt, pepper and paprika than this but that may not be to everyone’s taste. You could also add dried or fresh herbs to boost the flavour
  • Eat it just as it is, or blend it once cooled – it will look like pumpkin soup without the calories!
  • May be divided into 8 serves and frozen for lunches or quick meals

Notes

Recipe variations
You can add any other vegetables e.g. celery, potatoes, spinach, cauliflower, broccoli. I use up a lot of my vegetables that are getting a bit soft, just to use them up.
The vegetable stock may be substituted with chicken stock if you are not vegetarian.
Keyword Easy, Healthy, Vegan, Vegetable Soup, Vegetaria

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Healthy Vegetable Soup Recipe
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