Here is the Pane Pasquale or the Italian Easter Bread. This old, yet original Easter recipe calls for eggs wrapped in dough.
Serving: Serves 6
Prep Time: 3 hours and 40 minutes
- 1 lb all-purpose flour
- ½ oz fresh yeast
- 3 oz sugar
- 3 oz lard
- ¼ cup water
- ¼ cup anise liqueur
- half lemon zest, grated
- 2 eggs
- salt to taste
- 1 whisked egg
- egg, per ring
- Begin by preparing the starter (biga in Italian), which will improve the leavening of the dough.
- To make the starter, mix together 1/3 of the flour, the yeast and water in a bowl.
- Mix until smooth and uniform.
- Then shape the starter into a ring and, to make it rise quickly, place it in the bottom of a bowl of hot water so that it is completely covered.
- In the meantime, use the remaining dough to make a well on a flat work surface.
- To the middle, add the sugar, salt, lard and grated lemon peel.
- As soon as the starter floats to the top of the bowl, it has finished rising.
- It can now be removed from the water and placed in the center of the well with the other ingredients.
- Also add the eggs and anise liquor.
- Mix everything together for a long time, preferably using a mixer, until the dough is smooth and elastic.
- Shape the dough into a ball and dust with flour.
- Let rise in a glass bowl, covered with a sheet of plastic wrap, in a warm place for about half an hour.
- Once the dough is done rising, divide the dough into as many cakes as you would like to make.
- Roll each piece into a long, thick log.
- Shape each log into the form you prefer (a ring, an eight or a braid).
- Place the raw eggs (in their shells) in the middle of any holes in the dough.
- Place the rings on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
- Cover with sheet of plastic wrap or and let rise for 30 to 45 minutes in a warm place.
- Once the dough is done rising, brush it with whisked egg and bake in a 400° F over for 40 minutes or until golden.
- Your may now serve your Pane Pasquale or Italian Easter Bread!
Recipe from: http://www.academiabarilla.com/italian-recipes/desserts-fruit/easter-biscuits.aspx