COOKING & BEVERAGES

Italian Easter Cookies-Keeping Tradition

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-PUPA CU LOVA-

These cookies bring me back to childhood. Francine and I would each cherish our annual Easter egg treat made by Nonna Frances. My sister Fran loved the egg, with a little salt added. I ate the cookie-we are a dynamic cookie eating duo.

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I arrive tired, wearing sun glasses. I was grading papers until 3:00 a.m. Fran (AKA “Fern”) has my latte ready. Love how she makes the froth!

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Bella Sophia shows off her skills with her “selfie stick” I am thinking where’s my coffee?

Bella Sophia came up with a sample egg, it has a heart with a cross for the sacred heart of Jesus, a strong Sicilian symbol. I think it is precious and reminds me of the true meaning of Easter. My sister Fran shares history with all the kids, explaining the symbolic meaning of eggs, re-birth and spring time.

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The night before Bella Sophia and Nonna make dough. We deliver a very special Easter egg cookie and “S” cookies to Great Aunt Nancy Davi, who is going strong at 103 years of age! Her daughter, my Godmother Tina and her wonderful hubby Frank are in Sicily now. Wish I was with them!

We all gather, keeping tradition alive. Auntie Fran and Nonna Cathy encourage us all. Everything is ready, thanks to my sister. She is a terrific organizer. The “S” Italian cookie dough was made by Nonna Cathy and Bella Sophia yesterday. It is individually portioned. All of the cousins and friends get their own bag of soft dough to shape and frost.

Yummm…we can smell the vanilla and citrus (see prior post for “S” Italian cookie dough recipe).

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We color eggs for the Italian Easter baskets cookies. We also shape dough into traditional “S” shapes, making sure to keep some unfrosted for Bella Sophia’s Padrino.

Auntie Fran has gone to the bakery. She has pre-baked sugar cookies and bakery quality made buttercream! We are all thrilled, adults and children all eager to taste. We set up a “kiddie” station, to frost these pre baked cookies. All little hands are busy. There is laughter and fun. This was a good plan, to have store bought cookies as an alternative. Flexibility is key, no need to wear ourselves out. We find that we need to balance hand-made and store bought.

In between, the kids run outside to ride bikes, play basketball…explore. Del Monte Forest is a natural playground.

We wrap the cookies, especially well sealed are the baskets that have Easter eggs. These will stay in the fridge to be eaten Sunday morning before mass. A perfect balance of protein and sweet.

Do you remember your Nonna or Auntie’s making Italian Easter egg cookies?

Huckleberry Wishes, Maxine (A.K.A. “Molly”)

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