We've moved from Baltimore, Maryland USA to Venice, Italy in pursuit of living our dream!

Sunday, March 31, 2013

Buona Pasqua!

Happy Easter and Buona Pasqua!

Of all the things I've had to get accustomed to living here on the other side of the Atlantic ocean, learning about new traditions and how the locals celebrate holidays is one of my favorites.  I have learned that  somewhere around 2 -3 weeks before Easter I must make a stop at Drogheria Moscari near the Rialto Bridge (on the San Polo side) to check out their huge chocolate egg. Once I see their window display of chocolate eggs, chocolate bunnies and their one enormous chocolate egg covered with elaborate decorations, I know Easter is just around the corner. It's probably my favorite thing about this holiday.

Another Easter time favorite of mine is seeing all of the grocery stores and bakeries display the "Colombo" , a cake like dessert in the shape of a bird, in their windows.  This tastes a lot like the Christmas time Panetone, it has candied citrus baked in it, and almonds on the top, and has a consistency that is a cross between a bread and a cake.  Even though I see it in shop windows for most of the month preceeding Easter Sunday, I wait until a day or two prior to the holiday before I buy mine. The anticipation makes it so much more enjoyable. It isn't Easter without at least one Colombo!

Coloring hard boiled eggs is not a tradition here. In fact, I scouted all over this side of Venice the other day in search of white eggs. No luck. All I could find were brown eggs. I don't think those would be very good to color. I'm thinking Italian children might really like doing this. Did not find any Paas boxes of dye for eggs either.

Easter baskets are not common here either. Instead, children receive one fairly large chocolate egg about a foot tall that is already packaged and wrapped in fancy paper by some chocolate maker. Inside the egg is some little toy for the child.

And the Easter egg hunt doesn't exist here either. I mentioned it to a friend of mine the other day, and she told me she had only ever seen it in a movie. Sant'Elena has a lovely grassy park right in front of our apartment which might just become the site of a big American style Easter egg hunt next year. I'm already plotting!!!  


Ă„iti said...

Brown eggs do work for dyeing, you just have to leave them a bit longer. And regular food colour with vinegar works well too, though the yellow doesn't seem to stick, it wouldn't show up on brown egg anyway.

We're in Finland and have to come up with new ways to colour eggs as they don't do coloured eggs either, we also use watercolour paints and glitter paints from craft shops. Glue, glitter and sequins are fun too. Maybe for next year.

I have really been enjoying your blog, thank you so much.

karen said...

Aiti-- grazie!!! those are fantastic ideas. Now I will start planning for next Pasqua!!!