Italian baking: Easter bread

Italian Easter bread.

Every year on the occasion of Holy Easter, Italians in Italy and around the world prepare Easter bread, in Italian casatiello. Easter bread is a dry cake made with natural ingredients: flour, sugar, animal fat, eggs, natural starter, and fragrances. The ingredients are kneaded by hand to produce the right texture. It is definitely a good exercise for the arm muscles, too! The Easter bread typically is decorated with colored eggs and sprinkles. The flavor and fragrance are delicate and delicious on the palate. In the past, it was baked in the bakers’ wood-fired oven. Today you can easily prepare it in your own oven.

Easter bread is not a difficult cake to make. As always, one needs passion to work in the kitchen, some experience, and time. Easter bread needs several hours of rising time to succeed softly. During baking, the scent wafts not only inside the house, but also outside. It is certainly very inviting. Italians double the amounts to make many to eat with family and to give as gifts to relatives and close friends. The Easter bread can be eaten not only on Easter Day, but for breakfast in the morning and after lunch. On Easter Monday, it is brought to a picnic outing. In addition, it can be consumed as a snack during the Easter holidays.

The tradition of making this cake is ancient. History tells us that it is a product of Neapolitan cuisine. There are several versions, both sweet and savory. Each family has its own recipe, so the proportion of ingredients, scents, and decorations may vary. The shape of each cake is round, and it has symbolic value, as it resembles the crown of thorns of Jesus Crucified. The egg is symbolic of Christ’s resurrection, thus rebirth, matching the arrival of the spring season and the beginning of new life.

During the Easter season, this cake can be found for sale in Italian pastry shops, bakeries, and in supermarkets. Without the presence of casatiello, it’s not Easter for Italians. In fact, it is considered the king of Easter sweets.

Happy Easter! Buona Pasqua! ¡Feliz Pascua!

*Schedule cooking classes with Maria in your home to learn more.

*Organizza delle lezioni di cucina con Maria a casa tua per apprendere di piu’.

*¡Organiza clases de cocina con María en tu casa para aprender más!

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