Calabrian Easter Bread



Easter in my home would not be Easter without Easter bread and coffee for breakfast. Easter bread or Cuzzupe (pronounced gaz-u-pa) is a semi-sweet, egg-based pastry popular in Calabria Italy. My family's tradition is to bake the bread with a boiled egg nestled in the center and five fingers cut into the dough. The fingers represent the hand of Jesus. This recipe was passed through multiple generations before it was passed to me. Now, I am passing it to you. Happy Easter!


Makes 3 Cuzzupe


Ingredients


Egg Wash

1 Egg Yolk

1 tsp Water


Pastry

  • Flour - All purpose and pre-sifted

  • 3 tablespoons butter or spread

  • 3 tablespoons granulated sugar

  • 3 whole eggs

  • 2 egg yolks

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1.5 teaspoon vanilla extract

  • 1/3 teaspoon salt

  • Colored sugar or colored candy sprinkles


Preparation


Egg Wash

  • Mix egg yolk with water


Pastry

  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees farenheight.

  2. Cream butter/spread and sugar.

  3. Mix in all other ingredients, except the flour, to your creamed butter/spread and sugar.

  4. Mix in flour a tablespoon at a time until a dough is formed. The dough will be very sticky at first.

  5. Knead in flour until the dough is no longer sticky. Do not over knead or the bread will become too hard.

  6. Roll out the dough and cut into four equal parts.

  7. Shape three Cuzzupe.

  8. Place a boiled egg in the middle of each Cuzzupe. Some people place a raw egg and have it to cook in the oven.

  9. Cut and roll fourth piece of dough into thin cylinders. Crisscross the cylinders over the egg to secure it in place. Attach the ends of the crisscrossed cylandars to the Cuzzupe by wetting them with a little water. Then flatten the cylinders with your fingers.

  10. Brush with egg wash and lightly sprinkle with colored sugar or colored candy sprinkles.

  11. Bake until brown on the bottom (20-30 minutes) - check bottoms often.

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