Der Osterhase

Clearly it had to be served on a bed of carrots and celery!

On Good Friday, I got off work early and drove over to the Farmer's Market to meet Justin for Easter weekend grocery shopping. Being Catholic, he had fasted all day. Also being Justin, not only was he hungry but he was also ornery – something only a bit of food could help with. After consuming a muffin and chatting outside with his parents on the phone about Easter, we headed inside to begin our shopping…

Since Justin is the main chef at the majority of our family holidays, he (and I) get the privilege of picking out the entree. Over the past week we had joked that the only "appropriate" meal to eat on Easter was either chicks, lamb, or rabbit. As you might imagine, everyone who was invited to the Easter celebration turned their noses up at these suggestions – imho, rightly so. As we wandered the gigantic store, we kept circling around the same ideas – steak, chicken, or BBQ – none of which pleased my husband. I guess we've had all of these things so frequently in the past that they've lost their sparkle. (However, if they do indeed sparkle, I can say with utmost certainty that I understand why Justin wouldn't want to eat them in the first place!) Rather than wander around the freezing cold store for eternity (I swear they keep it at like 30º!), Justin and I finally agreed on a combination of steak and rabbit. While I wasn't certain I would actually consume the rabbit myself, (I'm the one in the kitchen complaining about Bambi and Nemo being cooked! "Fish are friends NOT food!!") I couldn't pass up the comedic aspect of letting Justin cook (and eat) the "Easter bunny" on Easter. Justin used The Joy of Cooking to make the rabbit, and surprisingly enough, all of the family gave the poor guy (bunny) a taste!

One thing to note is that, while I thought eating Easter bunny was an original and unique experience for the holiday (most Americans eat ham or so I thought…), I was surprised to learn that perhaps eating rabbit for Easter is not as unique and original as I had first imagined. (Thanks Google for bursting my bubble!)

Despite that, it was quite fun listening to my grandparents recall their childhood when they would eat rabbit for dinner (and apparently kill and sell rabbit for a nickel in downtown Atlanta!). My step-grandmother mentioned to Justin that his rabbit tasted better than the one her mother made when she was a child! I know this made Justin happy (and gave him tons of extra grandson points!).

Now! Where does the German Osterhase (Easter hare) come into play?

It doesn't.

Or maybe it does?

It depends on how you look at it…

1. If Google is correct, the idea of an Osterhase began in Germany … or, at the very least, the idea of the American Easter bunny originated from immigrants that came from Southwest Germany to Pennsylvania in the 1800s. At the time, Easter was not purely a Christian celebration but rather it was also a pagan ritual in which kids would leave out their bonnets for the Easter bunny to deposit eggs, candy, and gifts while they were asleep, much like what Santa Claus does with stockings at Christmas time.

2. On that particular day, I messaged a German friend about how Justin was cooking an Osterhase knowing he would be amused. (He was, I think.)

3. I needed an O food word for food Friday. :)

Have you ever eaten rabbit? What is your traditional Easter dinner?

** Participate in the A-Z blogging challenge with me! You know you want to! :)

1 comment:

  1. Poor rabbit, I can't help thinking about the children's books that celebrate the Easter Bunny, but then, during the war years in England it was often the only meat we had.


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