Why Not Review: Easter Treats
Seven Tab writers assess their Easter indulgences.
In an age where Christianity's influence continues to decrease for a large number of us, Easter exists only for some as a commercial entity. For others the gap between last term and next is a time to celebrate other religious festivals.
I appreciate this reads like a script for a Year Six assembly, where like the greedy and distracted kids we all were then, you momentarily believe any minute now a bag of Mini Eggs will be passed around.
Unfortunately, no Mini Eggs follow but The Tab's tales of Easter Treats.
PHOEBE LUCKHURST thinks ‘Truly Irresistible Fairtrade Belgium milk chocolate Easter egg with chocolate truffles’ leaves a little to be desired…
As an astute seven year-old, I dethroned Santa when I observed casually that Daddy’s writing looked like Santa Claus’. As an astute nineteen year old, I realise that when there’s a Co-Op round the corner and Easter morning yields just a Co-Op Easter egg – it means Daddy forgot Easter 2010.
Title: ‘Truly’ gestures towards a nebulous universal truth and ‘irresistible’ designates a taste experience so undeniable that you must devour it. But. ‘Fairtrade’. Fairtrade still tastes a bit like sanctimony. After Fairtrade I got lost in words. If the Conservatives were simply to pen ‘Take Brown Down!’ as their party slogan, it‘d all be over. Keep it brief, whether slogans or confectionery.
Packaging: Infant-proof – sister foiled by small oval of selotape at the top of the box. Not eye-catching, though there was a rabbit on the side. How ‘Easter’ of it.
Taste: Front of egg ornamented with swirls dark and white chocolate pattern, injecting variety into what might otherwise have been a cloyingly milk chocolate egg. Truffles bore traces of that indeterminable ‘gritty’ substance that coats cheap chocolate and catches in your throat. There were six truffles, three flavours; one of the flavours was ‘salted caramel’. Bonus points for fidelity to ‘mission statement’: tasted like you’d dropped a melted Taz in a sandpit.
Size: For a direct ovoid comparison I’d select the ostrich egg. Chunky.
MOLLY GAVRIEL was similarly unimpressed…
Easter eggs have always kind of passed me by, if that’s at all possible. I have a tendency to get far too distracted by simnel cake and cardamom bread and sugared almonds and hot cross buns and mmm…the list goes on.
This year I was underwhelmed by the nostalgic but oh-so-sickly Nestle Milkybar classic that is. Whatever happened to the surprise packet of chocolate buttons inside? And was the chocolate always that sweet? On the bright side they’ve finally replaced the war-waging earth-polluting plastic encasement for a simpler, more eco-friendly cardboard basket, which is a step in the right direction for both the environment and my fingernails. Instead, the winner of my foodie heart wasn’t egg shaped at all – it came in the form of a bar of Rococo’s cardamom white chocolate. Unfortunately for my bank balance, I think my tastebuds may have matured a little.
LOTTIE UNWIN is relieved to be too grown up for the Easter Egg Hunt…I am pretty sure I am allergic to chocolate, and almost certain I am allergic to alcohol. Yes, allergic might not be ‘scientifically correct’, but the results are similar – headaches, rashes and such like. Essentially I am a pathetic creature, but regardless come Easter time I loyally plough through, with every inch of pain I endured this afternoon, polishing off large glasses of wine in a sunny pub garden.
Easter is my mum’s time to shine. Entrusted with the title of ‘prodigal child’ from a young age I was subject to impossibly clues – product of years of practise with the Sunday crosswords. While my dyslexic brother sat, his face already smeared with chocolate, I would be desperately searching for anagrams, trying to say words backwards and then in despair tearing apart cupboards.
To my delight, getting into Cambridge seems to have proven my worth once and for all. This year, there was a Green and Black’s egg on the table and I relished every undeserved morsel of it.
However, I looked through the recipes and conceded that there was one option that was perhaps worth committing this sacrilege for. Chocolate nest cakes. They throw up nostalgic memories of "cooking" them at brownies, but unlike most childhood forays into baking (half cooked fairycakes anyone?) they actually taste good. And are fairly difficult to do wrong. Plus, as they are made with breakfast cereals, I always feel it is entirely justified to eat them for breakfast, they can't be much worse than coco pops, right?
JORDAN BICKERTON indulged in something unusual, in light of some tragic circumstances…
Easter – an unfettered bastardisation of a fictitious religious festival at best, another excuse for filthy capitalist multi-nationals to take advantage of the gullible man on the street at worst. As if I’d lower myself, conform and buy a tacky, over-packaged monstrosity (If only I were so principled). Basically, I forgot. My family didn’t remind me or shop on my behalf, I am in dire financial straits, and, most importantly, I’m just not that into chocolate. It makes me thirsty. No gut-busting triple Mars combo for me then! Instead, I treated myself to a packet of Wine Gums – who am I to miss an opportunity to consume? – and diligently toasted our lord the saviour with every gelatinous, synthetic mouthful. Yummy.
EMILIE FERRIS was in no spirit for celebration and explains the two reasons why Easter bothers her…
Number one, I was raised by a family of calorie counting doctors. Two; I’m Jewish. Let me explain.
The first issue was easily resolved by sequestering other people’s Easter eggs at break-time, occasionally by persuasion, more often by force. As a result, I grew into a fat, sly child with a reputation for stealing. Easter is always a painful time for me, when I recall all those snatched moments at the shadiest end of the playground; exchanging those beloved sought after eggs with anything interesting I might have in my desk, putting them into my pocket only to discover that they’d melted from their perfect, nay, oval form into an unappetising squelch against my thigh.
The second issue is slightly more complex. Easter, as some of you may know from RS GSCE, often, but not always, falls around the same time as Passover. This festival, in which, amongst other things, one must not consume anything made with flour, naturally forbids the additional consumption of Easter eggs, tantalisingly put on display and made into ever more daring formations in almost every supermarket for miles. Which I was not allowed to eat. Ever.
ANNA SHEINMAN embraces Jewish Passover…
Easter eggs? Pah. Instead, I was sitting in a darkened room, candles flickering. As one, twenty elders turn the first page, and begin to chant in an ancient tongue. The talk is of plagues, of death, and of blood. The liquid in the crystal glasses is a deep, thick red. On the table are bones, burnt offerings, a powder so sharp tears come to our eyes as we force it down.
Items with strange names are held up in turn: the chanting grows louder. The eldest of the elders is muttering to herself, rocking back and forth. I, the youngest, begin to feel sick. The chief elder strides in. “Right!” she exclaims, lacquered nails glinting in the candlelight, “Down to business: how many matzah balls do you all want in your chicken soup?” Pesach celebrates the coming forth of the Jews from slavery in Egypt. We sing, we pray, we read a darn good story all about us running away, (you know the one: plagues and sea crossings and all that jazz), and then do what us Jews do best, and eat. Oh and the elder rocking back and forth is my Great Aunty Yeta, no real explanation for that, she’s just really old. Happy Pesach everyone!