Since we were here in Italy for Easter, I thought it made sense to highlight a recipe and tradition that’s relevant for every Italian family on this important cultural holiday.
With their strong Christian background, Italians are particularly serious about the observance of Easter. What was perhaps most interesting for me to learn was that many of the famous churches and cathedrals throughout every city we visited are actually still in use for services on the holiday. Regardless of which famous Italian artist painted what Renaissance fresco, these medieval churches are still in use today, especially for important masses like the ones held during Easter.
But almost as important as the religious observance is the food. During our Umbrian lunch in Orvieto (which, I should add, was held in a grotto dug out of volcanic rock), we celebrated with a traditional Easter dessert, the colomba.
The colomba is an Italian bread made of eggs, flour and butter, then sweetened by adding candied orange peels, almonds and a dusting of powdered sugar. The bread is often shaped like a dove, after which it’s named.
Melissa is tasting her way through Food & Wine: Flavors of Tuscany and Umbria. Follow along as she checks off all of her food-centric to-dos.