Easter is one of my favorite holidays. Always was. I loved the change to Spring. The symbolism of rebirth through the resurrection of Christ. I even like watching the religious television movies, Jesus of Nazareth, The Robe etc.
What makes Easter such a special time of year is the deliciousness and sweetness of the pastry. My house of humble Calabrese origins, were never brought up on pizza ghiena, (pizza rustica) or wheat pie (grano).
We indulged in “Guti”. The sweet braided bread with an egg in the center.
In different parts of Calabria and all around Italy you will find different variations of “Guti” along with different names. “Cuzzupe, Cuddrura, Cugghuraci cuculi, etc…” I was shocked to go in bakeries and see these beloved breads encased around a colored egg. Although I found it pretty, my mother was skeptical of the dye that cold seep into the bread. I know that back in Calabria, in my parents’ day, the notion of dye didn’t even exist so why would they even consider changing their tradition to make us kids happy? Tradition is more important!
This year my mother and her friends made the “guti”. I walked in and saw that they were making “pitte” as well.
Pitte, if I haven’t already blogged about are fig filled pastry that are baked during the Christmas Season. I asked my mother’s friend Anna who incidentally is not Calabrese but is quickly becoming just as authentic as one can by association, what the deal is with the “pitte”? She said, “Hey we’re in America we can do anything, anytime of the year.” She’s right. Back in the day ingredients were sparse and only made available during the appropriate time of year. Now we can almost get anything we want even out of season.
I love “guti” especially the egg in the middle. Even though I always longed for an Easter basket I got “guti” instead. Hoping this year the Easter Bunny will bring me a basket of chocolate but somehow I think I’ll help up with “guti” 😉
Wishing fellow Italians and non Italians Buona Pasqua with a renewal of strength and spirit throughout the Easter Season. A very humble blessing and wish for my mother to continue on her road to recovery during this Holy time of year! As you can see she is back in action. Just the way we want her!