Images and text by Gabrielle.
For us, living in France means living with a general feeling of being foreigners or outsiders. (Not necessarily a bad thing. It is what it is.) When it’s a holiday, that feeling is magnified. I was thinking about that as I wandered through the Easter candy aisle at the grocery store the other day.
Obviously, all the types of treats that spell Easter to me and to my older kids, weren’t anywhere to be seen. No fluorescent Peeps (my favorite!). No jelly beans. No Cadbury mini eggs. No chalky malted eggs that you can use to paint your lips blue. No Reeses peanut butter eggs. And no egg dyeing kits either — dyeing eggs isn’t really a thing here.
That said, there were tons of holiday treat options, and I kept thinking how French adults must walk through these aisles and fondly identify the candies that define their childhood Easters. But I have no idea what they are! I have no idea which chocolate eggs are stereotypical, which ones have been sold for decades, and which ones have just been introduced as a new product.
So I end up choosing treats based solely on looks. I am 100% judging these books by their covers — or these candies by their wrappers. Today, I’m sharing the prettiest treats I’ve found. I thought you might like to get an idea of what a French child would find on Easter morning — a gift from the Church Bells, instead of the Easter Bunny.
I really like the look of these speckled eggs. At first, I thought they would be some version of an oversize malted egg, but they’re not. They’re hollow chocolate with a candy coating.
These chocolate eggs in primary colors, also hollow, might be my favorite. I spotted them at a grocery store in Ireland called Dunnes. I thought it was fun to see something Easter-y, that wasn’t in spring pastels. And I like the illustrations too.
These pastel eggs are tiny, and solid chocolate. They are also from Ireland. That little bunny is the cutest thing I’ve ever seen in my life.
Gingham plus scallops? It doesn’t get French-ier than that. So cute! Variations on foil-wrapped hollow chocolate eggs (like these and the polka dotted and striped versions at top) seem to be the most widely available Easter candies available here. For Easter Egg hunts, these are the sorts of eggs that are hidden.
These look like jelly beans, but they are not jelly beans. I repeat. They are NOT jelly beans. They are kind of crunchy. And I can not figure out what the flavors are. But they sure are pretty.
Though it will be hard to convince you based on these photos, we have been working hard as a family to cut way down on our sugar consumption. Our current aim is to go refined-sugar-free except for one day per week. We hope those once-a-week sugar days will accommodate traditions we love — like birthday cake, holidays sweets, weekend baking and our beloved movie parties. We’re not there yet, but we’re trying.
How about you? What sorts of treats and foods mean Easter to you and your kids? And will you be cutting down on sugar in this year’s Easter basket?