The Walpole Daily Practice | Easter Special

Walpole CEO Helen Brocklebank reminisces about Easter past, and provides suggestions on how to make Easter present that extra-bit special – despite living in lockdown.

The Easter weekend has long been a high spot in the Walpole CEO family calendar. We drive off down the A303 to my mother’s house, arriving in time to admire her Easter decorations, quite as lovely as those at Christmas, and to argue about why there are twelve, not eleven apostles on her excellent simnel cake (she feels sorry for Judas, and can’t quite bear to leave him off, despite his being the baddie in the Easter story). There are always long country walks – isn’t the weather always lovely at Easter? – and fields full of sweet newborn lambs to be met with heartless shouts of ‘mint sauce’, reminding us that the lamb will be the main attraction come Sunday lunch. There’s always an Easter egg hunt in the garden too, which the children are really far too old for but won’t do without, and church and all the lovely rituals that will be so much missed this time round, as we stay obediently put in London.

We may not be able to travel, but Walpole members have come to the rescue with wonderful ideas to make Easter special at home: Moriarty, who make the Walpole Awards so magical, has come up with beautiful ideas for Easter tablescapes from items you may already have lying around the house, inspired by styling Moriarty founder, Georgina Attwood, did for Moët’s bridal brochure; and Marcus Wareing has given us his mouth-watering slow-cooked lamb recipe: the perfect culinary complement for your Easter tablescape. Chapel Down’s NV Vintage Reserve would add an excellent seasonal sparkle. Happy Easter.


Moriarty’s Easter tablescapes

With the world being slightly different in 2020, Moriarty Events’ Founder, Georgina Attwood has been looking at how we can still make this Easter weekend memorable for the right reasons by creating some beautiful Easter tablescapes from items you may already have lying around the house.

Use layered plates of the same tone, and put pink tulips and florals of different heights in a number of bud vases. Try to leave your tulips by a window to open up 48 hours before you want to put them on the table.

Each place setting is created with napkins bunched and tied with ribbon and a flower.

To add an Easter touch George has put a little chick on each place setting: you could also use eggs or Lindt bunnies here.

Using a variety of different plates, vases, glasses and candlesticks brings a gorgeous layering effect which is super easy to replicate at home. Head to Moriarty’s Instagram or Pinterest for more inspiration for your Easter styling and send Walpole your tablescapes and we will put them on our Instagram Stories.

Moriarty will be working on new Tablescapes at Home classes over the coming weeks to help you give a little love to your time at the table – do follow Moriarty’s Instagram to take a look and have a go yourselves, and Georgina says “if any Walpole brands would like Moriarty to feature their products please get in touch as we would love to collaborate!”


Marcus Wareing’s Slow-roast leg of lamb with mint sauce

“With Easter on the way,” says Marcus, “what better time to celebrate the wonderful produce that come with Spring. You really shouldn’t rush the cooking of a whole leg of lamb, and the secret to getting tender meat that’s infused with plenty of flavour is to baste it frequently. This recipe makes its own delicious gravy too.” Serves 6

INGREDIENTS
2 large onions, quartered
1 leg of lamb, approx 1.8kg
3 peeled garlic cloves
2 tbsp chopped rosemary
1 tbsp thyme leaves
Grated zest of 1 lemon
2 tsp sweet paprika
1 tbsp sea salt
3 tbsp olive oil
250ml sweet sherry

For the Mint Sauce
2 tsp caster sugar
½ tsp ground cumin
6 tbsp white wine vinegar
4 tbsp finely chopped mint

METHOD

Heat the oven to 160°C/140°C fan/gas 3. Put the onions in the bottom of a large deep-sided casserole or roasting tray. Sit the lamb on top of the onions. Blend together the garlic, rosemary, thyme, lemon zest, paprika, salt and olive oil to give a thick paste. Spread the paste all over the lamb and put into the oven for 45 minutes. Pour the sherry over the lamb and baste the lamb with the liquor in the bottom of the casserole or tray. Return to the oven and cook for a further 3 hours, basting every 45 minutes-1 hour. If the liquid is evaporating, add some water.

While the lamb is cooking, make the mint sauce. Dissolve the sugar in 3 tablespoons of boiling water. Mix in the cumin and vinegar. Just before serving add the chopped mint so it retains its bright green colour.

Remove the dish/tray from the oven and transfer the lamb to a board, ready to carve. Pour off some of the lamb fat/oil from the cooking liquor, strain the liquor into a jug and serve with the lamb.