I had an early Italian Easter lunch with friends a few days ago. I tried to get all the ingredients from Italy, and I managed to find most of them, even though the shank of lamb I got was from New Zealand.
I started with bresaola with arugula and shaved Grana Parmesan. Bresaola is an air-cured beef meat which is typical of northern Italy, and it is usually eaten this way as an appetizer.
The first course was the Italian Easter pie. I baked two mini pies for convenience since I did not want leftovers. As for the filling, I could not find artichokes and Swiss chard some recipes mentioned, so I used fresh spinach instead.
We later had a lamb stew with potatoes and green olives. I used a whole shank of lamb which was already deboned. I removed the fat and cut it in small pieces. It was worth simmering for long time: it came out very tender and almost melt in my mouth.
We also had a fennel salad as a side dish. The dressing was very simple: salt, pepper and olive oil. It was very crunchy and tasty!
Finally, there was a dessert: sliced colomba served with a tiny marzipan chick. The colomba is a typical Easter sweet bread in Italy. You can think of it as the Easter version of panettone. This one I’ve found in one of the local stores had a zabaione filling, which is a custard made with sweet wine.
If you liked this recipe, you might also be interested in how to make mini Italian Easter pie.