Sicilian Easter sweets: the tradition of the agnello pasquale

Sicilian Easter sweets: agnello pasquale

To be precise, it is a typical Easter sweet of Favara (a small town in the province of Agrigento). But, during Easter, you can find it (and especially taste) in each part of Sicily. And the agnello pasquale (literally, “Easter lamb”) is one of the most special sweets that you will ever taste.

The agnelli pasquali are very ancient sweets. The recipe dates back to the late Nineteenth century. According to the tradition, the first persons who prepared them were the sisters of the Collegio di Maria in the “Batia” neighbourhood of Favara. A recipe that was passed down orally.

The two main ingredients of the traditional recipes are almond paste (also called pasta reale in Italian, “real paste”) and pistachio paste. These ingredients are very common in the Sicilian pastry making: one great example is the frutta di Martorana (marzipan sweets, in the form of fruits and vegetables), that are part of another Sicilian tradition, the cannistru of the dead.

There are several versions of agnello pasquale:

  • The ingredients of the traditional recipe are almond paste and pistachio paste
  • In one variant of the recipe, the ingredients are sugar paste and cloves
  • In another recipe, the ingredients are almonds, sugar and cinnamon

After all, every part of Sicily has its own variants of Sicilian culinary specialties.

 

Image source: Flickr.com/photos/francescav

Related articles