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Easter

Sharon Hearne Smith shared her go-to Easter recipe for this delicious cake. This stunning rose effect is surprisingly easy to achieve once you have a piping bag fitted with a star nozzle. Be sure to practice your rose making technique on a plate first but if you do make a mistake on the cake, simply lift the rose off and go again. While the recipe makes a large amount of buttercream, it is necessary to achieve this effect. It is important to use a gel and not liquid food colour to avoid watering down the buttercream. The buttercream can be prepared up to 24 hours in advance and left in the fridge, but it will harden, so remove it about 15 minutes before you need it to let it soften up.

Serves 8-10

Cake

250g unsalted butter, plus extra for greasing

250g caster sugar

4 large eggs

250g self-raising flour

1 teaspoon baking powder

2 lemons

4 tsp poppy seeds

200g lemon curd

Buttercream

500g white chocolate

700g unsalted butter

700g icing sugar

Yellow gel food colour

You will need

A piping bag fitted with an open star nozzle

A homemade flower bunting, optional

Method

Preheat the oven to 180C (fan 160C), 350F, Gas Mark 4. Grease 3 x 20cm sandwich tins and line each base with a disc of parchment paper. Set aside on baking sheets.

Using an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until smooth and fluffy. Add the eggs, one at a time and each with a little flour, until incorporated. Add the rest of the flour, the baking powder and poppy seeds. Finely grate the lemon zest in, squeeze in the juice and beat until well blended to a dropping consistency.

Divide the mixture evenly between the tins, levelling the tops with the back of a spoon. Bake for 20-25 minutes, swapping the tins around halfway through.

Meanwhile, make the buttercream. Snap the chocolate into a large heatproof bowl and melt either in the microwave in 30-second blasts, stirring between each go, or over a pan of simmering water, shallow enough that the water doesn’t touch the bowl. Once melted, remove and leave to cool.

Using an electric mixer, beat the softened butter in a large bowl until pale. Sift the icing sugar over in stages, combining well before adding the next. Beat in the cooled chocolate until well combined to give a smooth mixture.  Beat in enough yellow food colour to give a vibrant yellow. Cover and set aside.

Once the cakes are cooked through and just springy to the touch, remove them from the oven. Leave in the tins for 10 minutes before transferring to a wire rack to cool completely.

To assemble, using a palette knife, spread 150g of buttercream on each one. Divide the lemon curd evenly between two of them, spreading it level. Stack these two on top of each other on a serving plate or cake stand and top with the remaining cake. Spread 200g of buttercream all around the sides of the cake, ensuring a smooth and even finish. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes until firm. Fill a piping bag fitted with an open star nozzle with buttercream and set aside for now.

To make a rose, start in the centre and pipe anti-clockwise around the centre to create a tight prawn like shape. Pipe the first row of roses in a single layer around the base of the cake. Then repeat the rows all the way up the side of the cake, refilling the piping bag as necessary. Finally, pipe the roses around the top of the cake, beginning on the outside and working inwards until completely covered.

If the icing is beginning to soften, set in the fridge until ready to serve. Serve topped with a homemade flower bunting if liked.

Top Tip!

Don’t let the rose icing put you off if you don’t have time or feel unable to manage it. Simply apply and smooth the icing with a palette knife. Half of the buttercream will be sufficient in this case.

With thanks to our Easter contributors

Photo Credits

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As Easter looms, we thought it might be inspiring to put some ideas together that can help you create a special day at home. Maria Reidy Events has made it easy while working with some of her contacts in the industry to bring you some great ideas for entertaining at home.

Whether it’s having a rhubarb Bellini, getting dressed up or creating a pretty table with some extra decor they have you covered!  

Bunny ears napkin fold

Pick your napkin – fold into a triangle, roll, wrap around your egg and tie with ribbon or twine.

The fold works best with a square napkin (any material – even paper works!)

Mix and match glassware

Maria and her team love the combination of coloured and eclectic glassware against white crisp linen. Use what you have at home – try to use similar hues of colour to give a cohesive look.

Pop of colour

Skip the usual pastels in favour of bold and bright colours that celebrate spring.

Mix and match stems from your local grocery store or garden, very often what you need is right outside your door.

A collection of smaller vases or old bottles, such as empty gin bottles, a mismatched look can work well if the colours are pulled together by the flowers.

Blue Drumshambo Gunpowder Gin bottles are really lovely for this.

Decorate your table with your dessert

Whether it is home baked, or shop bought, why not make your cake a feature.

An effortless way to decorate your Easter tablescape is to use your dessert as a centrepiece.

Place your dessert of choice on a cake stand and arrange it at the centre of the table.

Remember to cover it with a glass dome to avoid any wandering fingers during dinner.

The space

Maria advises to always work with the surroundings. Rather than put in something that feels out of place or alien to the space, put thought into what’s already in the room.

The table must not compete with its surroundings. Ask yourself; is it a modern contemporary setting, rustic or old world?

How are the shapes, structures and setting going to work when people walk in?

What is going to be the most visually striking set up?

Dress up

We are living through unusual times and so it makes the day special when you make an effort to put on a little bit of glam!

If you have young children suggest they make an Easter bonnet with a prize for the best one on the day!

With thanks to our contributors

Photo Credits

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Christmas is just over and we know, we know it is far too early to be thinking about Easter, but that’s tricky when the supermarkets are already stocking Easter chocolate.

It may be months away but we’ve spotted Easter goodies popping up in the local corner store and the big Tesco. 

We ate our weight in chocolate over Christmas but nothing compares to this latest discovery… Terry’s Chocolate Orange Mini Eggs.

Our dreams have come true.

New Foods UK posted a photo of the chocolate delights on their Instagram this week and we are now beginning the hunt for them.

The orange chocolate eggs are covered in a crispy orange shell and we truly cannot wait to try them. They come in 80g bags and only cost £1.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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The limited edition chocolates will more than likely vanish from the shelves after Easter so we will certainly be stocking up over the next few weeks.

Don’t judge us. We developed a major chocolate addiction after Christmas and we’ve no intention of giving it up in 2020.

Feature Image: Newfoodsuk

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Whether your Easter traditions involve a raucous family egg hunt or enjoying the cut-price Easter eggs in the days following the chocolatey celebrations, one thing is for sure: Easter is one indulgent holiday.

Many families go all out and do a big roast dinner to mark the occasion, or simply fill up on delicious chocolate. 

To honour the Easter weekend, one popular Mexican mecca on Irish soil is melding the sweet and the savoury into a very intriguing Frankenfood. 

The avocado pizza, the cronut, the carrot latte and the unicorn anything dominated the 2017 frankenfood trend charts. 

In 2018, we saw the eggs benedict doughnut, the crossushi and salted watermelon. 

2019 kicked off with the sushi sandwich, and now another iconic food pairing has been blended. 

Boojum has a massive Irish fan base, with their burritos making the 4th most ordered dish globally on Deliveroo in 2018, and the food favourite has risen again to create a bespoke miracle for Easter.

Teaming up with an Easter classic, the Cadbury's Cream Egg, Boojum's speciality team at Quesadillas by Boojum have collaborated to concoct the Cadbury's Cream Egg Quesadilla.

The traditional Mexican flat bread has been reimagined to host the sweet treat, as well as a generous helping of the sumptuous Cream Egg goo poured over top. Is that the unmistakable sound of growling stomachs we hear? 

Joe Groves at Deliveroo says: It is a privilege to partner with the amazing team at Quesadillas by Boojum to bring this bizarre creation directly to our customers’ doorsteps or desks.'

'Two things we absolutely love in Ireland are Boojum and chocolate, and since our creativity knows no bounds, we thought, ‘why not bring these two together?' they finished. 

If this sounds like something that would be right up your alley, here's how to get your hands on one: 

The Creme Egg Quesadillas will be available exclusively from the Deliveroo app or website during Easter.

They launch on Wednesday, April 17th and are available to order up until Easter weekend – with Quesadillas by Boojum of Dublin, Cork, Limerick, Belfast and Derry all participating.

If you're not feeling like cooking over Easter, this could be the perfect treat to satiate the salivating family you might have around, or if you will be spending the holiday solo, it could be ideal for a quiet night in foodie experience. 

The dish is priced at €9.50 (ROI) and £7.50 (NI) respectively – happy hunting.

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Oh McDonald's, how we love you.

Our teeth, however, are less fond espesh when you put two eggs-traordinarily delicious desserts on  the menu.

The folk at Maccy D's are bringing us joy in the form of the – the Cadbury Crème Egg McFlurry and the Cadbury Caramel McFlurry – just in time for Easter.

They will be available from March 20, but they are only here for limited time only – so get cracking!

They’re only in restaurants for six weeks so egg-cited customers had better move fast before they fly the coop.

It seems that people are excited for these delicious treats.

One said, ''Guys!! The Cadbury Creme Egg Mcflurry is back and I little just cried happy tears!!''

While another wrote, ''My favourite time of the year is now: Cadbury Creme Egg McFlurry time.'' 

Get them while they're in all good McDonald's near you. 

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If you're anything like us, Easter morning is often spent lounging around the sitting room surrounded by piles of torn wrapping paper and empty Easter egg packaging. 

The chocolate just keeps on coming and before you know it you've milled into half an chocolate orange, the ears of an unsuspecting Lindt bunny, and more creme eggs than you can even count – and it's not even lunchtime.

But hey, it's only one day a year, so you may as well enjoy it!

And to help ease the guilt, we've compiled a helpful list of all the reasons why a chocolate-based breakfast is actually good for you.

1. Chocolate makes you happy

A natural mood-enhancer, Chocolate is known to release a number of 'happy' hormones into the brain. 

It also contains a compound called phenylethylamine, otherwise known as the 'love drug', which arouses feelings similar to those that occur when one is in love.

Honestly, who needs a boyfriend when you've got a selection box and a chocolate Santa? 

2. It can help relieve stress

Studies have shown that eating dark chocolate everyday can reduce stress hormones in as little as two weeks. 

Chocolate everyday and not a care in the world? Don't mind if we do. 

3. You'll eat less throughout the day

Believe it or not, chocolate consumption may actually reduce your appetite, meaning you'll be less inclined to overeat throughout the day.

And given that all portion control generally goes out the window on Easter weekend, a chocolate-based breakfast might be just want to prevent a turkey induced coma later on in the evening. 

4. It can help with PMS

Dark chocolate acts as the perfect remedy for many PMS symptoms such as bloating, fatigue and irritability. 

It's antioxidants also also trigger the walls of your blood vessels to relax, lowering blood pressure and improving circulation.

Sounds good to us! 

5. It helps to wake you up

The caffeine content of chocolate can vary with the types of beans, however all chocolate will produce a slight stimulatory effect. 

It's nothing compared to the pick-me-up feeling you'd get from a cup of coffee, but we're willing to bet that if you ate enough of it you'd be alert all day. 

6. It's good for your skin

One of the less known benefits of chocolate is that if can actually do wonderful things for you skin. 

It can help you maintain a healthy glow by modulating healthy blood flow, while high flavanol cocoa powder has been shown to provide effective defence against sunburn. 

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Easter break is here and we have welcomed it with open arms.

You may be a lucky college student with weeks off from lectures, or a girl boss who is constantly dreaming about bank holiday Monday.

Even though we love having a busy schedule we adore the thought of curling up with a book with an Easter egg to our left and a cup of tea to our right.

We’ve conjured up a list of the books you just have to delve into this Easter. Bookworms, enjoy these joyous tales.

The Bestseller: Letters To My Daughters by Emma Hannigan.

 

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This novel is jam-packed with excitement, heartache, and shocking twists. There is so much going on in Emma Hannigan’s Letters To My Daughters you won’t be able to put it down. The book follows the lives of the Brady sisters who are all living drastically different lives, from the wild sister who lives in LA, to the sister whose husband and daughter gang up on her, making her life miserable, and the eldest sister who owns a string of successful bridal shops, but can’t help but feel like something is missing from her life, despite her booming business. The tale looks at the strained relationship between the sisters and their busy mum Martha.

This book is ideal for those of you who love a drama-filled tale stocked full of family drama.

The Old Favourite: Bridget Jones’s Diary by Helen Fielding

The classic chick-lit novel stole the hearts of many women back in the 90s, and it is still one of the most loved novels today. The tale is written in the style of the personal diary making it extremely easy to read. You’ll gobble this novel up in one sitting. If you’re unfamiliar with the legend that is Bridget Jones, she is a thirty-year-old singleton living in London, who has set new year resolutions that every girl will relate to- lose weight, improve career, stop drinking and find a boyfriend.

This book is the perfect antidote if you’re feeling a little bit glum. Bridget Jones’s Diary will leave you crying with laughter and the diary-style makes the story that little bit more heartwarming.

The Biography: Is Everyone Hanging Out Without Me? (And Other Concerns) by Mindy Kaling

She may be busy starring alongside Oprah and Reese Witherspoon in A Wrinkle In Time, but prior to that role, Mindy Kaling penned one of the best biographies in a long time.

 

The actress opens up about her fears and worries and the doubts that fill many of our minds on a daily basis. Mindy’s honest words are so refreshing and endearing. The Office star shares her opinions on friendship, Hollywood and romance in this genius book.

This witty biography is bound to bring a smile to your face, even if you’re not a fan Mindy. She discusses the anxieties and worries we are often too afraid to talk about, and her openness is a real breath of fresh air.

The One Everyone Is Talking About: Almost Love by Louise O’Neill

 

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Louise O’Neill’s poignant and moving stories have won the hearts of many women around the world. She has featured such important and touching topics in her work. Almost Love follows the complicated story of Sarah who falls for a man and sacrifices everything else in her life to be with him, even her job. Sarah and Matthew’s toxic relationship makes this a raw and gritty read.

This book will open your eyes to the scary reality of falling for the wrong person.

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The long weekend is just around the corner and with so many amazing events due to take place around Dublin, staying in is not an option – (that is if you're not too busy devouring copious amounts of chocolate, of course). 

From Whitney sing-alongs to mass pillow fights, here's our top five picks.

1. Beauty and the Beast Drive-In, March 31, Leopardstown

Retro Drive-in Movies are bringing the Disney magic this weekend, with a special screening of the iconic Beauty and the Beast. 

Grab the girls, load up the car and prepare for the sing-a-long of your lives! 

There'll be burgers, hot digs, pizza and popcorn available on site 

Limited tickets are available here

2. Whitney vs Mariah Easter Sunday Special, April 1, MVP Dublin 8 

Reckon you could give the queens of pop a run for their money? 

The Sing Along Social is a zero-commitment choir designed for people who can't sing.

You don't have to practice, or even need to know the words. It's about singing along to your favourite tunes in the company of friends and strangers. 

Doors at 7.30pm sharp and tickets are €9.00 online or €10.00 on the night. 

3. North Side vs South Side Pillow Fight, April 1, Phoenix Park 

It looks like the old rivalry is alive and well, as Dubliners from both sides of the Liffey meet for a massive pillow fight at 3pm in Phoenix Park.

Oh, the organisers have also planned a 'Grushie' afterwards – which, from my understanding is some kind of old tradition that involves throwing small coins on the ground for children to collect.

Sure, what else would you be doing on Easter Sunday?  

4. Ted Fest Dublin, The Church Bar & Restaurant, Dublin 1  

Is there anything to be said for saying another Ted Fest?

Awakening your inner Mrs. Doyle and celebrate the Easter weekend with a lovely cup of tea down at The Church Bar & Restaurant. 

Guest are invited to dawn their holiest attire and participate in a world record attempt for the Largest Gathering of Characters from Father Ted. 

There'll also be an interactive big screen quiz, Funland photo opportunities, drink special and prizes for the best dressed and best quiz team name. 

Tickets are €45.00 for a table of four and are available here

Go on, go on, go on, go on! 

5.Red Bull Music FREE GAFF

Did I hear someone say free gaff? 

From cheeky cans to late night jams, there are few things in life more enjoyable than a humble house party. 

Taking over a city-centre gaff for one spectacular weekend, FREE GAFF brings together Ireland's best musical talent all under one roof.

For more information, click here

 

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We just LOVE a good food trend on Instagram – from rainbow bagels to bubble waffles.

We're always always always on the hunt for new and delicious Internet offerings, and we have struck gold. 

We were recently scrolling through one of our favourite Insta accounts @EatMeNYC when we saw it – the bunny cone. 

Easter is around the corner, and to be honest, as much as we want all the eggs, our hearts are craving these gorgeous bunny cones. 

 

BOGOFREE Ice Cream Tag your friendsnd join us for BUY ONE GET ONE FREE! —— Easter is coming soon! @taiyakinuc is doing BOGO for everyone starting March 26 until April 2. The Easter Bunny Kone with vanilla ice cream, cotton candy sprinkles, rainbow mochi and bunny ears. (BOGO)AlsoThe Easter Bunny Taiyaki is BACK! The Easter Bunny Taiyaki Special with consist of their signature red bean taiyaki fish waffle cone, vanilla ice cream, cotton candy sprinkles, rainbow mochi and bunny ears (not bogo)!What are you waiting for?! Mark your calendar and join us for FREE ice cream ( BOGO) ————  @Taiyakiny9 Baxter St, New York @nycmouthg your frien ———— #nycmouth #taiyaki #icecream #icecreamporn #bunny #taiyakinyc #easter #dessert #dessertport #zagat #foodie #infatuation #hungry #nyfoodie #timeoutnewyork #topcitybites #lovefood #buzzfeat #eatingnyc #foodiegram #igfood #insider #insiderdessert #insiderfood #foodporn #foodpornography #foodnetwork #foodgasm #foodpics #foodoftheday

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Created by New York based ice cream shop, Taiyaki NYC, these bunny cones are the sweetest treats on Insta right now. 

They're made with your choice of waffle cone, any flavour of whipped ice cream and a delightful set of bunny ears (which are edible, btw).

Top that all off with pastel coloured sprinkles and some sweets on a stick, and you may just have the most perfect cone ever. 

Taiyaki has become pretty famous as an ice cream destination, due to their many creative cones, such as their unicone – yes, inspired by unicorns. 

Actually, at Christmas they created the most adorable Christmas tree cone, that even had a little star on top. 

WHAT WILL THEY THINK OF NEXT? 

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Get ready for the most magical Easter yet because Harry Potter chocolate eggs are here to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Inspired by the world of witchcraft and wizardry, 'The Sorting Egg' was created by Slattery Patisser & Chocolatiers in North Manchester.

With it's gold painted lightning bolt and sugar paste Sorting Hat, the all-black egg wouldn't look out of place on the Hogwarts Express sweet trolley or even served in the Great Hall.

Oh and the wand? – Just a chocolate dripped pretzel, no biggie.

*drools*

But wait, that's not all.

Hidden inside the egg is a parchment scroll that will reveal which house you've been sorted into.

-Not Slytherin. Not Slytherin. Not Slytherin-

Unfortunately, the egg is only available by collection at the Slattery store in North Manchester, so unless you're planning a trip or know someone who lives close by, it's unlikely that you'll get your hands on one this side of Easter.

But hey, a girl can dream!

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Kim Kardashian took the opportunity to enjoy some downtime with family this Easter, and posted a series of snaps to Instagram to share the sweet family moments.

Kim, who last year was the victim of a traumatic robbery in Paris, has been focusing on her family since the event. 

The reality TV star, along with husband Kanye West and a number of celeb friends including Chrissy Teigen and John Legend, enjoyed an Easter party at the Kardashian-Wests'. 

Kimye posed with their three-year-old daughter North and one-year-old son Saint, in a snap that has garnered 4.2 million likes.

Kim captioned the image “Easter 2017."

 

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Kim went all out for the family event, donning a gold silk slip dress and strappy high heels.

She also off her new sleek lob hair cut, while the kids opted for a series of princess costumes

However, it was Kanye who went for the most eye-catching ensemble. 

The rapper decided to dress up as the Easter bunny, much to the delight of the kids at the party. 

It looks like the family truly marked the Easter occasion in style. 

Oh, and while we have you; don't forget to have your say in the inaugural SHEmazing Awards this May! It's time to vote, and you can do it right here!

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As most people are home chilling with friends and family for Easter, there is probably a lot of relaxing TV and cups of tea going on around the country. 

If you're felling a combination of bored and creative right this second, you could try your hand (literally) at one of these gorgeous Easter nail art designs.

There are nail art themes for every festivity, and Easter is clearly no different according to Instagram. 

From adorable bunnies to intricately painted eggs, the possibilities are endless.

Here are a few of our favourite Easter nail art looks from Instagram:  

 

A post shared by Nicole Smith(@nicolesmithnails) on

 

A post shared by Anna(@annanailartt) on

 

A post shared by Melinda VanNewkirk (@mellee5911) on

 

A post shared by Jo Fogarty (@jofoge) on

Feature image: Instagram / Jofoge

Oh, and while we have you; don't forget to have your say in the inaugural SHEmazing Awards this May! It's time to vote, and you can do it right here!

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