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Kristine Fellizar
March 19, 2018 12:29 pm

St. Patrick’s Day may be over, but there’s another big holiday dedicated to eating delicious traditional meals with friends and family. Good news, that day is today! Many people of Italian heritage will be celebrating the feast of San Guiseppe, also known as St. Joseph’s Day, today. The holiday falls on March 19th every year, and it’s basically Italy’s version of Father’s Day.

And like pretty much all big holidays, today is all about sharing good food with those you love most — especially St. Joseph’s Day pastry.

According to Delish, the story goes like this: Back in the middle ages, Sicily went through a major drought that would leave its people in famine. The locals prayed to their patron saint, St. Joseph (the husband of the Virgin Mary and the Earthly father of Jesus Christ) and promised to honor him with a banquet each year. St. Joseph answered their prayers, and they were able to feast on local foods that managed to thrive after the rain.

Italy is known for its delicious traditional cuisine, so you wouldn’t expect anything less from a celebration like today. A typical St. Joseph’s Day meal will include fig dishes and a ton of St. Joseph’s Day pastry. So here are some delicious St. Joseph’s Day recipes you should try tonight:

Zeppole 

You’ll need: vegetable oil, flour, ricotta cheese, mascarpone cheese, sugar, baking powder, salt, eggs, vanilla extract, and powdered sugar.

These sweet doughnuts filled with cheese are popular and a definite must-have for today. Find the full recipe for these zeppoles at Brown Eyed Baker’s blog.

Baked Zeppole di San Giuseppe 

You’ll need: water, salt, butter, flour, eggs, sugar, vanilla bean, and black cherries in syrup.

This is another version of the zeppole, but this time it’s baked. If you want to try this version that’s topped with cherries and not powdered sugar, check out the full recipe for these zeppoles here.

Shirt Cookies

You’ll need: cookie mix, eggs, butter, water, and frosting.

This may not the typical traditional St. Joseph’s Day pastry, but this is Italy’s Father’s Day, after all. Why not make it fun with shirt-shaped cookies to celebrate your dad? Check out the full recipe here.

Sfinge

You’ll need: water, Crisco, salt, flour, eggs, custard cream, cannoli cream, and cherries in syrup.

The sfinge is another popular traditional St. Joseph’s Day pastry. Check out the full recipe for this cream puff-like treat here.

Ciambelle

You’ll need: flour, potatoes, vegetable oil, eggs, active dry yeast, sugar, and oil.

Ciambelle are sweet, potato-based doughnuts that are pretty popular on St. Joseph’s Day and on Christmas. If you want to try these, check out the full recipe here.

St. Joseph’s Day is all about the baked goods, but many people will also sprinkle break crumbs on top of their pasta to honor the saint. So whichever treat you choose to try today, enjoy!

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