This past Sunday was Easter Sunday! Personally, I am not very religious myself, but as mentioned previously, I come from an Italian family. Simply put, holidays mean delicious food that everyone looks forward to eating that one time of year. My family has special food traditions for each holiday and every single year I cannot wait to eat everything I see. Calories don’t really exist on holidays…am I right?
Usually, our family holidays consist of multiple food courses. Our Easter Sunday only consists of two courses, but what it lacks in courses it makes up for in sheer amount of food.
Course 1. Homemade Manicotti:
According to Wikipedia, “Manicotti is very large pasta tubes usually ridged, that are intended to be stuffed (filled) then baked.” For those of you who have never had manicotti before, you are doing yourself an extreme amount of injustice. Try them and thank me later. You need a lot of patience and time to make them, but let me tell you it is so worth it. You can taste the difference in texture and density. Homemade manicotti is so much lighter.
Let me start by explaining the manicotti process. Like the section says, they are from scratch, as has been the Easter tradition for what feels like forever in my family. There are always two bowls of ingredients. One contains the secret family recipe for the manicotti shells and the other contains the ricotta mixture. Each manicotti is made individually. Yes, it is made one by one in a small cast iron skillet ¼ cup of batter at a time. They are then removed from the skillet and placed on wax paper to cool where they are then stuffed with the ricotta and folded to create the tubular shape. It is grueling and, as I said, extremely time consuming. We had 120 of them on Easter.
Course 2. Ham and Such:
Just because all that manicotti wasn’t enough, my aunt also made 15 pounds of ham. So just one short hour after the first course done, it was time to loosen that belt at least a one notch and prepare to eat yourself into a food coma. We had the 15 pounds of ham, stuffed mushrooms, asparagus, sweet potato casserole, and mashed potatoes.
Course 3. Dessert…Obvi:
What holiday would be complete without this course? Over the years, I have learned to pace myself and limit my intake of food so this way I can eat everything. It is flawed and does not always work, but hey, I try. By the time dessert and coffee came, everyone was visibly uncomfortable. Bring it on dessert! For this course we had homemade that included, coffee cake, rice pudding, icebox cake, chocolate chips, sprinkled cookies, and bunny cake. Then we had cannoli’s, sprinkled donuts, and cupcakes.