Covid-19 pandemic is hopefully leaving space for travels and events. Italy is starting to loosen the restrictions and so it is time to dream and plan your next holiday and we are celebrating Easter!
During Easter, Pasqua in Italian we generally spend time with friends. In fact, an Italian proverb says that one should spend Christmas with family and Easter with those you enjoy your time most. Meaning: do not feel obliged to stay with your family. And this is generally what we do: barbecue, trips and eating. If there is a constant in our lives, that’s definitively food.
And here are 5 delicacies that you can find almost everywhere in Italy during Pasqua and Pasquetta.
Although there isn’t a traditional first course, generally handmade pasta or lasagne are very common in this period. But definitely lamb prepared in many varieties is the real protagonist of this holiday. The lamb for Christians represents Jesus who sacrificed himself and died on the cross. But this tradition is also present in the Old Testament to remember Abraham’s sacrifice.
Chocolate bunnies can be found in shops and supermarkets but the tradition on Easter in Italy is to eat a chocolate egg. Eggs can be divided into two main groups: with dark or milk chocolate. You can go for a simple one or for eggs enriched with nuts, sugar, candies and any sort of decoration. Eggs come in every size, colour and price. The handmade ones can easily reach some hundred euros. Some producers also allow you to choose the surprise to put inside, so with a diamond ring there really is no limit on chocolate eggs. Well, maybe your credit card can represent one.
This Dove-shaped cake is a sort of panettone, the dough being very similar, topped with almonds and sugar. But even here the varieties can be unlimited: with cream inside, pieces of chocolate or covered with chocolate.
Pastiera is a very popular and traditional cake from Napoli and is prepared with ricotta cheese. You can generally find it in South Italy, but also in many restaurants during Easter time all over the country.
Traditionally families prepare a lot of Pastiere, some to eat, others to gift. An Italian proverb says: those who find a friend, find a treasure. I think we can all agree that those who find a friend who can cook Pastiera, has found an even bigger treasure.