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Rania’s Recipes: Bread Knots & Spring Pea Soup

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(Photo Credit: KDKA)

(Photo Credit: KDKA)

If you’re looking for some new dishes to try out at Easter this year, be sure to try these two great recipes from Rania Harris!

Rania’s Greek Easter Bread Knots

2 packs yeast
1/2 cups lukewarm water with 1-tablespoon sugar
1-cup sugar
1-cup milk
1 stick of sweet butter
3 eggs
2 egg yolks
½ cup fresh chopped dill
7 cups all purpose flour (approximately)
1 egg beaten with 1-tablespoon milk
Sesame seed
Hardboiled eggs dyed in red food coloring

Directions

Proof yeast in sugar water until yeast mixture begins to bubble.

Place milk in microwave and heat until hot. Remove milk from microwave and add butter – stir until butter begins to melt place all liquids with 1 cup sugar, 2 cups flour, dill and eggs in bowl of food processor process – continue adding flour until dough forms and is no longer sticky allow to rise in a warm place – covered – until doubled in volume.

Punch dough down and cut dough into 1½ inch rounds. Roll each round between palms and work surface to 8-inch long rope. Tie each into loose knot. Place each knot on a parchment lined baking sheet brush with an egg wash and sprinkle with sesame seeds. Tuck a hard cooked dyed egg into the center of each knot. Allow to rise again until doubled in size. Bake in 350-375 degree oven until bread is golden brown and when tapped, it sounds hollow, about 20 minutes. Allow to cool on rack.

Yield: Approximately 20 pieces

Spring Pea Soup with Lemon Crème Fraiche

2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 cups chopped leeks, white and light green parts (2 leeks)
1 cup chopped yellow onion
4 cups chicken stock, preferably unsalted
2 (10-ounce) packages frozen peas
½ cup heavy cream
2/3 cup chopped fresh mint leaves, loosely packed
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

For Garnish:

Lemon Crème Fraiche:

½ cup Crème Fraiche
1½ teaspoons grated lemon zest
1½ teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
Fresh chive blossoms or edible flowers for garnish

Directions

Heat the butter in a large saucepan, add the leeks and onion, and cook over medium-low heat for 5 to 10 minutes, until the onion is tender. Add the chicken stock, increase the heat to high, and bring to a boil. Add the peas and cook for 3 minutes. Off the heat, add the cream, mint, salt, and pepper to taste.

Using an immersion blender, puree the soup.

Serve immediately and garnish with a dollop of the Lemon Crème Fraiche and fresh chive blossoms or edible flowers.

Serves: 6

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