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If Christmas is the most wonderful time of the year for Italians, then Easter is surely the most joyous. It is yet another excuse for us to feast, be thankful and put into practice the traditions of our ancestors. And nothing is more important to Italians than tradition. Except eating… but really, eating and tradition are one in the same.
Mommy Francis (Joe’s grandmother, pictured above) was from a small town in Southern Italy called Agone. This village has a very special history, it is the home of the centuries-old Pontificia Fonderia Marinelli- the maker of Italy’s church bells. In a country where chapel bells sing the time and note moments of importance throughout the day, their silence between the days of Good Friday and Easter morning is conspicuous, and the return of their song is collectively rejoiced.
Every Easter, Mommy Francis would bake the Shadone- a savory egg pie filled with spring cheese and black pepper. Her grandchildren would come into the house, skipping with the excitement of the day. Immediately she would yell at the children to stop running around, heaven forbid their stomping should cause the Shadone to fall in the oven. No running or ringing bells until the Shadone has cooled, been served and enjoyed with a glass of Asti Spumante. It’s tradition.
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