March is upon us – the final stretch of dreary winter before the beginning of Spring. Shoppers look forward to Easter, which falls early this year, on April 12th. Chocolate eggs and bunny-shaped candy will fill your shelves, but how about your prepared foods case? The arrival of Spring is celebrated from Argentina to Spain, France to Italy. We’ve rounded up some of our favorite Easter recipes to give you some ideas. If you need a recipe don’t hesitate to contact our Corporate Chef Josh!
Torta Pascualina – Argentina
A beautiful Spring pie that is typically served around Lent. Tender, flaky puff pastry (or empanada dough!) encases a moist filling packed with ricotta cheese, mozzarella, parmesan and spinach. Hard boiled eggs are strategically placed in the pie so that they reveal themselves in each slice.
If you hail from Genoa, this tart may remind you of the fantastic Eastertide pie, prepared with swiss chard. The flaky dough encasing the filling is said to require 33 layers, in honor of Jesus Christ.
Cost-effective and approachable, both these preparations are a great way to add some seasonality to your prepared foods selection.
Star ingredient: Sicuro Shredded Mozzarella, and Sicuro Grated Parmesan.
Pizza Rustica – Italy
Hailing from Napoli, Italy, this often-spectacular preparation reminds us that pizza actually means … pie. No tomato or mozzarella in sight for Pizza Chiena, also called Pizza Gain or Pizza Rustica. The recipe may go as far back as the 17th century, when churchgoers would break their dairy and egg fast with this hearty pie.
This towering pie is filled with eggs, cheese, and salami. Where the Italian version uses a specific fresh cow’s milk cheese called “Basket Cheese”, Italian Americans often use ricotta or feta. You will also see hard boiled eggs, shell-on, dotting the top of the pie.
Star ingredients: Negroni Prosciutto d’Italia, Licini Sopressata Chubs and Slicing Sopressata, Colomba Fontina, Ambrosi Parmigiano.
Magiritsa was the answer to a very practical problem: once the lamb is butchered for a juicy roast, what to do with all the leftover offal and less savory bits? Romaine lettuce, some rice, and a lemon give this offal-based soup a refreshing twist. Today, one can use lamb shoulder and other conventional cuts for a twist on this comfy classic.
Star Ingredients: Iliada Extra Virgin Olive Oil.
Hornazo – Spain
Hornazo is a traditional specialty from Salamanca: a soft and fluffy bread dough stuffed with hard boiled eggs, chorizo and pork loin and baked till golden brown. Legend goes the bread was invented to use up all the hard boiled eggs accumulated during Lent …
Star Ingredient: Licini Spicy Chorizo, Palacios Chorizo.
Napolitan Grain pie
A truly iconic sweet confection, shrouded in myths and contradictory origin stories. Pastiera Napoletana is a delicate pie filled with an intensely perfumed filling, midway between a cheesecake and a rice pudding. Legend says the nuns of the San Gregorio Armeno Covent created the cake to celebrate Spring and the blooming orange flowers of their garden. You’ll recognize the pie thanks to its beautiful lattice top and light dusting of powdered sugar.
Star Ingredient: D’Amico Grano Cotto
Do you create Easter Specialties in your store? Tag us on Instagram @ muscofoodcorp and we’ll showcase them!