Here is what Easter is looking like out in the country, a/k/a Sant’ Erasmo. We rowed over to the island today to buy some vegetables from the Finotello brothers and came home not only with bitter chicory and a couple of fresh eggs but also two bussolai buranelli and hearts full of spring.
As I write, it’s 11:00 PM and the bells have just begun ringing outside. This means it’s Easter. They don’t wait till a sedate, well-bred 8:00 in the morning. In fact, they don’t want to wait at all. If nothing else could make Easter beautiful, it would be enough just to hear all the bells singing in the dark.
I had a fleeting notion of looking up some Easter poetry for you. Then I decided to just let the world speak for itself.
Somebody in the Finotello families -- two brothers and wives and small children -- always assembles some sort of festal creation. Whoever does it manages to make it look like it wasn't any effort at all.
Even the rosemary is in bloom.
And the baby fruit trees.
And some embryonic fig trees, branches already budding with teeny little figs.
This is what an Easter basket for that happy Primrose family looks like.
Of course you knew it was all going to come down to food. For anyone who thinks chocolate is too simple or trite, let me present their homemade bussolai buranelli. This is how I like to consume my Easter eggs. All you need is large quantities of flour, whole eggs, egg yolks, butter, sugar, and small quantities of lemon and vanilla. Like most homemade comestibles, these bear little resemblance to the ubiquitous commercial version.
A sample was thoughtfully and craftily offered. Because only one small chunk was needed to convince me to buy two. Believe me, this is not a confection to scarf like popcorn. It demands to be taken seriously, to be eaten with appreciation and complete denial of any knowledge of what it's made of. If you think of the ingredients, you're doomed.