The Easter dove is the sweet leavened “must” of this holiday, also for its shape which represents peace and love. To go back to its origins, you have to dive into a series of legends, all born in Lombard territory.
One wants it to have been born in 610 in Pavia, when the Irish pilgrim Saint Columbanus was hosted by Theodolinda: the queen offered him a rich meal based on game, which the holy declined as it was Lent. In order not to offend the queen, then, Columbanus blessed game, turning it into white doves of bread.
Another, traces its origins back to the Battle of Legnano (1176). Legend has it that a leader of the Lombard League saw two doves posing on the flags of his army and, inspired, had the cooks prepare dove-shaped loaves, enriching them with eggs. Of course, it is that the dove is the direct daughter of “panettone”, and with certainty it has been preparing since the 1930s, when Dino Villani, mantuan artist and publicist, had the intuition to use the same equipment for the production of “panettone” to create a new Easter cake in the shape of a dove.
HOW TO PREPARE THE EASTER DOVE
Since then, the dove is characterized by a long preparation punctuated by three leavenings and simple but delicious ingredients: flour, sugar, butter, eggs, vanilla and then candied oranges and raisins. The final touch imprints the glaze, enriched with almonds and sugar grains.
As in all of Lombardy, also in the province of Varese almost all pastry shops offer classic or revisited artisan versions.
SWEETS AND PASTRY SHOPS IN VARESE
In this article we mark some of them. We start from the capital, whose historic center, in addition to beautiful houses for sale in Varese, is teeming with excellent pastry shops.
It is the case of Buosi Pastry (piazza Beccaria, 6 – tel. 0332241227) where, in addition to excellent traditional doves, you can taste special desserts such as Dolce Varese and Caffè Buosino, an irresistible mix of hot chocolate and coffee. For a historic pastry shop you have to walk along Corso Matteotti, where you meet Ghezzi Pastry (Corso Matteotti, 36 - tel. 0332235179): a real favor in the heart of the city, once frequented also by Gabriele D'Annunzio. If you want to try something different from dove, do not miss the soft nougat, but also the marron glacé and boeri, pralines and cakes in all variants.
Going to Gallarate, the addresses to be pinned are a couple. Bianchi Pastry (via Sant’Antonio 1 – tel. 0331793338) offers for Easter compelling doves, with or without candied fruit, covered with chocolate, and adorned with Easter objects. But the most particular is the puff pastry dove stuffed with cream, typical of Easter Day. You go safe even with the dove of the Fratelli Gnocchi Pastry (via Varese, 71 – tel. 0331796537). In between tastings, remember also to pin a few appointments to discover our homes for sale in Gallarate.
Between one taste and the next, remember to also make a few appointments to discover our homes for sale in Gallarate. In the province of Busto Arsizio there is Pasticceria Campi (via Milano, 3 - tel. 0331631418), a historic pastry shop whose specialty is the sweet Pulenta and Brüsciti, made with sponge cake, Strega liqueur, cream, chocolate, cream, hazelnuts and honey which, however, in the Easter period, leaves the leading role to the dove: very classic, with a crunchy glaze.
In Morazzone, Mariano Massara and his wife Sara Costa, owners of Sem Sara and Mariano Pastry (via Caronno Varesino, 53 – tel.0332461595) guarantee a theory of extraordinary sweets. Here, relying on the dove can be really reductive.
In Gavirate you go safely with Veniani Pastry (Piazza Matteotti, 4 - tel. 0332743084), an historic address where on the initiative of Costantino Veniani in 1878 were born the ugly and good preparations with almonds, toasted hazelnuts and vanilla, patented in 1910, still wrapped today in elegant art nouveau paper. Even with Easter eggs and doves they guarantee the highest quality.
Finally, in Marchirolo, almost on the border with Switzerland, let yourself be tempted by the creations of Bacilieri (via Statale, 24 – tel. 0332723987), a beautiful pastry recognized for its leavened – dove above all – but also for decorated chocolate eggs.