St. Joseph's Day brings special breads, sfingi and zeppole to Rochester bakeries

Mar 16, 2022 514

BY: Tracy Schumaker

While St. Patrick's Day, with its soda bread, green beer and corned beef and cabbage, seems to garner much of the attention in mid-March, another saint has a feast day with its own food traditions. St. Joseph's Day, on March 19, honors the man most Christians consider the foster father or earthly father of Jesus Christ. In Italy, where St. Joseph is beloved, the feast of St. Joseph coincides with the country's celebration of Father's Day.  

According to legend, a drought in Sicily in the Middle Ages led to crops failing and people starving. People prayed to St. Joseph, and after the rains came and plots were planted, a celebration was held to honor the saint. Wealthy families prepared bountiful feasts that they shared with people who were less fortunate. This became known as Tavola di San Giuseppe (St. Joseph's table).

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