Feast of St. Joseph

In  many Italian-American communities,  St. Joseph, who prevented a famine in Sicily during the Middle Ages is regarded  as a Patron Saint. There was a severe drought at the time, and the people prayed for rain; promising that if he answered their prayers, they would prepare a large feast in his honor. The rain came, and the people of Sicily prepared the banquet. Since they were saved from starvation, giving food to the needy also became a St. Joseph’s Day custom. The fava bean, the abundant crop, has become a traditional part of St. Joseph’s Day 

St. Joseph’s Altar…courtesy of http://www.houston.org

Upon a typical St. Joseph’s Day feast altar(in three tiers to represent the trinity), people place flowers, candles, limes,  wine, meatless dishes(the Lenten fast), fava beans, specially prepared cakes, breads, cookies and, of course, zeppole, the cream filled pastries.                                                                             

Zeppole…it looks delicious

Tradition says that the zeppole was named after the Zeppelin AirShip, lighter than air.Have you had a zeppole? Do you really think it is lighter than air? No matter. They are delicious and it’s once a year. The Feast is on March 17th.

Buona Festa!
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2 Comments on “Feast of St. Joseph”

  1. Anita Iannuccilli Says:

    Ed, Thank you for the background on St Joseph’s Day which is extremely close to my heart since my mother’s birthday was March 19th and her name was Josephine. Because I am in Italy, all our Italian heritage is of great importance. We just came from a passegiata and preparing to go out for a Sicilian dinner. All is well here….. Love, love to all

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