Zeppole di San Giuseppe: It’s Father’s Day in Venice

One cake recipe is traditional and the other is “modern” and inventive. But then, the colors of Father’s Day in Venice are tinted with red, the color of love. You can see it in the traditional treat served today in Venice and in particular, at Pasticceria Rosa Salva’s who specialize in making it. It’s called Le Zeppole di San Giuseppe, a bignรฉ treat Venetians love so much.

Rosa Salva is one of the most ancient chocolate and pastry stores in town, in fact, it developed into a luxury catering company as well and also sponsors and organizes traditional Venetian Feasts. It has three outlets in town and on weekdays, you get fluffy croissants filled with Nutella cream, strawberry and apricot jam at breakfast. Around 11 am, their pastry stores become little cafes when plates of tramezzini and panini farciti – rolled sandwiches arrive, covered with cellophane paper, delivered by the dozens. Everythings then in place for a delicious lunch break amongst the Venetians. You get a small menu of warm and cold lunch and today, their variant of Zeppole di San Giuseppe, vanilla-filled bignรฉ cakes for Father’s Day decorated with candied cherries.

Our weekly Breakfast Postcards from Venice are back, and today we take you for a walk around the pastry outlets at the Rialto Market, celebrating Father’s Day !

On 19 March, Italy celebrates La Festa di San Giuseppe, the Feast of Saint Joseph which is Father’s Day, and Venice is no exception. Le Zeppole di San Giuseppe originally come from Naples, Campania, but then, we have seen quite a few southern Italian sweets in Venice, originating in Campania, Calabria, Sicilia and Puglia. I first noticed them a few years ago and by now, every second pastry store in town offers fragrant treats from the South.

For example, at the Rialto Market bakeries and pastry outlets and also at Pasticceria Ponte delle Paste located at San Lio, you can find cannoli siciliani and sfogliatelle just like you were entering some cafe in Sorrento or Naples for your breakfast break.

These sweets are getting that Venetian touch though, they come enriched with cream fillings that differ from the original recipes. Above, you can see Neapolitan sfogliatelle filled with crema zabajon which is the Veneto touch. Or, a soft chocolate mousse filling goes into them and they might be enriched with cocoa in the first place.

Today in Venice, we also get red velvet cakes, but the ones you can see above are not flavored with artificial colorants. Their red color comes from using strawberry syrup instead and sometimes, alchermes liquor which provides a nice flavor as well. The soft dough contains a lot of butter and is enriched with coconut flakes, cane sugar and a touch of honey. By the way, we’ve got a special variety of honey in the Lagoon and we’ll be taking about it soon here on the blog!

PS – Stay tuned for our weekly Breakfast Postcards from Venice, we will publish one every Monday, starting 19 March 2018.

Would you like to get more culinary travel tips about Venice ? We’ve created a Welcome to Venice Kit for you consisting of a 32-page e-book, 10-page travel planner and a virtual guided tour in Venice ๐Ÿ™‚ You can download it here.

Published by Iris Loredana

Iris Loredana: Author of La Venessiana - Venice Travel, Food and Lifestyle Guide for Responsible Visitors.

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