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Holiday Breads
Easter bread
Pane di Pasqua di Nunziatina Melfi-Fresco (Easter Bread from Molise, with yeast, lard and lemons, Version II)
Originated from: Casacalenda, Molise, Italy
Occasion: Easter
Contributed by: Pauline Fresco, Elio, Carinna and Tomas

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2 envelopes yeast (regular)
1/3 cup warm water
1/2 tsp. sugar

2 kilos flour (Robin Hood or Five Roses)
750 grams sugar
500 grams potatoes(mashed potatoes must be well cooked)
1/2 lb (225 gr) Crisco
2 whole lemons (juice and zest)
20-25 eggs at room temperature


Mix yeast in warm water. Let stand to rise.

Mash potatoes very fine.

Mix in Crisco so that it melts in hot potatoes.

Beat 10 eggs with all the sugar.

Put the flour in a very large container and pour all other ingredients over top.

Add eggs and continue to add eggs a little at the time and knead till bubbles form (approx. 1/2 hour).

Add oil all around the bottom of the dough when done with kneading and let rise.

The dough must grow 3 times its height.

Proof and re-knead into loaf pans that you sprayed with Pam.

Put only 1/4 size of dough into pans.

Makes approx. 15 loafs (size of banana bread).

Oven 250 degrees F.

Time: 30 Minutes, then cover the tops of the loafs with Scott towels in oven and cook 20 minutes longer.

Optional: If you don't want to spray pans with Pam you can grease and flour the pans.


The Easter bread was made by Pauline Fresco and her two children; the photo was taken by her cousin, Mary Melfi.

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