Easter spring breeze 2013

Feeling bohème in a light spring breeze, March, Swedish west coast, 2013.
In a cashmere top, made in Japan, and silk-mix dress, made in Italy.
A belt with two long strands of cultured pearls bound as one, in light pink to deep purple lustre.

Text and Photo © JE Nilsson, CM Cordeiro 2013

As the earth turns on its axis, the Land of the Midnight Sun is awakening to spring at a cozy -4 to 1 centigrade outdoors. Not warm by any standards but sunlight is here to stay for the next few months in a stretching of daylight.

The colour yellow marks Easter in Sweden, as red marks Christmas. And while in previous years, Easter decorations on tables consisted of the sunshine marigold of Easter Lilies with likewise colourful feathers and eggs, the symbols of the spring equinox, of new beginnings and fertility, this year in shops – black feathers – that were fetching enough for me to bring home where they immediately found a place on the dining table together with the bright Easter lilies.

Black feathers, available at the florists, find their way to interior decoration in Sweden this year at Easter.

On Swedish tables this Easter weekend would be piscatorial staples such as sill, herring and anchovies in the form of Janssons Frestelse (Janssons Temptation), a potato gratin laced with heavy cream, sauteed onions and anchovies.

And eggs.

Apart from the moulded bacon and eggs dish I’ve prepared, I would love spending exquisite time exploring some of the more delectable looking egg recipes. Softly poached and creamy to the palate, Eggs Benedict makes it high on the breakfast list and Shakshuka on the lunch list.

Cooking is as therapeutic as it is an adventure to the senses. Poached eggs are not always easy to prepare to perfection, but I figure after some experimenting, I might finally get it right.

With a not too impressive zero degrees in the shade, there is always a fairly warm spot to seek out in the sun. Strange for me, to try to seek out a warm spot when in Singapore the basic rule is to stay in the shade whenever possible.

An annual fun thing to do at this time of year is to sit and decorate Easter Eggs, where one of my first art classes in primary school in Singapore when I was six, was to decorate egg shells with paint or crayon – any design, any colour of choice.

The result from the class of an average of 40 girls, each with their own colourful painted egg, all collected at the back of the class in large baskets rendered such a pretty picture, I still remember it till today.

Art class: Easter Egg decorating techniques got really advanced this year.

Easter in Singapore in primary school was also marked by the annual Easter Egg hunt in mid-morning recess!

Teachers at the convent where I grew up would paint and hide hard boiled eggs, perhaps as many as ten eggs, in a small cordoned off garden that was situated between a rectangle of classrooms. This garden in particular, had low cultivated fruit trees, where girls could climb up and sit if they wished, though we were never encouraged to behave in such tomboyish ways.

I think I only ever picked up one Easter Egg in my years in primary school on such egg hunts. I remember spotting several pretty eggs, but never tried to pick them up as ‘prizes’, always preferring to watch as someone else picked it up and what delight she got from having that egg in her hands. Priceless.

Easter Lilies.

I remember that closed garden fondly because while it was surrounded by classrooms, very few girls would choose to spend their recess time playing in that garden, preferring instead to play in the large field adjacent to the school canteen.

Wonderful memories from school days at the convent, in Singapore.

From the Swedish west coast, Glad Påsk 2013!

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