I know Easter is basically over but, in another sense, Easter is never over, is it? In that spirit, I’d like to spread one more idea for celebrating-with-littles at this time of year that we enjoyed this year on Holy Saturday, the day before Easter. I forget where I stumbled on this one first, but it’s all over the place.
It may seem funny to talk about Silent Saturday and the burial of the crucified body of Jesus in conjunction with sweet rolls. We were concerned for a while that Harriet might begin to believe that Jesus was a marshmallow. But actually it made the moment of Jesus’ body disappearing from the tomb just concrete enough for her to grasp it. Many cultures have foods that are prepared or constructed in a symbolic way, with each element suggesting some greater reality. Here in England (and in many other places) the hot cross buns served on Good Friday are the traditional symbolic food of Easter. But try these with your very little ones.
Preheat the oven and then give a triangle of roll dough to each child (Pillsbury crescent rolls are the easiest. Similar dough is available in the UK, called Jus-Rol croissant dough and costing around £2.). Then give each child a white marshmallow, symbolizing the (sinless) body of Jesus. The child dips the marshmallow in melted butter and rolls it in cinnamon and brown sugar because they would have put oils and spices on Jesus to prepare him for burial. The child then wraps the marshmallow in the roll dough and seals it closed, because Jesus’ body was sealed in the tomb. Then bake according to package/recipe directions. When you serve the hot rolls and break them open, the marshmallow is gone–because Jesus’ body wasn’t there!
We had these for breakfast with fruit and poached eggs. And ever since the discovery of the missing marshmallow, Harriet has been telling everyone that Jesus’ body wasn’t there because he rose from the dead. Pretty good lesson from breakfast food!