Every year, on March 19th, Italians celebrate the Father’s Day.
Maybe in your country you celebrate this occurence on another day – or maybe it doesn’t exist at all!
Why do Italians celebrate it on March 19th?
Because is “San Giuseppe” (Saint Joseph)’s day – and in the catholic tradition is THE father! The result is that Italians celebrate their fathers on this specific day.
Before 1976 Italians didn’t go to work nor to school on this day.
In some regions of Italy, Sicily for example, it’s tradition to offer meals to the poor people: Saint Joseph is the protector of the orphans, too!
We wouldn’t be talking about Italy if we didn’t mention… Food!
What special food do Italians eat to celebrate this day?
Though every region has its own tradition, the typical dish is usually made with choux pastry, cream or jam.
Let’s see some examples!
“Zeppola” is a fried cream puff filled with custard and black cherry jam.
It was created in Neaples but you can find it anywhere in Italy!
It is said that Saint Joseph fled to Egypt with Holy Mary and Jesus, and that he used to sell “Zeppole” to make ends meet.
It’s just a legend anyway.
In Tuscany and Umbria you can taste delicious “Frittella di riso”. a sort of rice crumpet. It is spicy and often contains liquor!
In Emilia-Romagna, and specifically in Bologna, they usually eat “Raviola”: it’s a sort of a soft cookie filled with jam!
Last but definitely not least, “sfince di San Giuseppe”! It’s a kind of fried pastry, typical of western Sicily. Its name comes from Latin (spongia) or maybe from Arabic ( isfanǧ) and it means sponge!
Do you celebrate the Father’s day in your country?
If so, when – and what do you usually eat?
Let us know – and thanks for reading!