St. Joseph's Day

Saint Joseph’s Day

March 19, 2014

Saint Joseph’s Day

Saint Joseph’s Day

Saint Joseph (1st Century). Our only reliable information about Joseph is to be found in the Infancy narratives of Matthew 1-2 and Luke 1-2. According to them Joseph is of royal descent from David. Joseph’s family came from Bethlehem in Judea but he had moved to Nazareth in Galilee, where he was a builder. He was betrothed to Mary, became alarmed when he found Mary was pregnant though she had not lived with him, and was dissuaded from divorcing her by the angel of the Lord who told him her pregnancy was, “by the Holy Spirit.” He was with Mary at the birth of Jesus and the visit by the Magi at Bethlehem. He took Mary and the child to Egypt to escape Herod’s massacre of the infants, and after the death of Herod, brought them back to Nazareth. He and Mary had Jesus circumcised and presented to the Lord in the Temple in Jerusalem. When Jesus was twelve Joseph and Mary took him to Jerusalem, lost him, and found him discoursing with the doctors in the temple. Thereafter the name of Joseph is absent from the New Testament except in Luke 4:22, where he is mentioned by name as the father of Jesus. Joseph was probably dead by the time of the Passion and death of Christ; the apocryphal Photovangelium of James says he was and old many when he married Mary. Special veneration to Joseph began in the East, where the apocryphal History of Joseph enjoyed great popularity in the fourth to the seventh centuries. In the West the ninth-century Irish Felire of Oengus mentions a commemoration, but it was not until the fifteenth century that veneration of Joseph in the West became widespread, when his feast was introduced into the Roman calendar in 1479, his devotion was particularly popularized by St. Teresa and St. Francis de Sales. Joseph was declared Patron of the Universal Church by Pope Pius IX in 1870; a model for fathers of families by Pope Leo XIII, who confirmed that his preeminent sanctity places him next to the Blessed Virgin among the saints, in his encyclical Quanquam pluries in 1889; a protector of workingmen by Pope Benedict XV; the patron of social justice by Pope Pius XI; and in 1955, Pope Pius XII established the feast of St. Joseph the Working on May 1, March 19.

© Victoria Hart Glavin

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Sfingi or St. Joseph’s Day Zeppole

March 19, 2014

Sfingi or St. Joseph’s Day Zeppole

Sfingi or St. Joseph’s Day Zeppole

It's Saint Joseph's Day and time to make Sfingi.

INGREDIENTS

Ricotta Cream Filling

One 15 Ounce Container Ricotta

3/4 Cup Confectioners’ Sugar

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1/4 Cup Mini Chocolate Chips

1 Tablespoon Finely Chopped Candied Citron Or Orange Peel

Dough

1 Cup Water

4 Tablespoons (1/2 stick) Unsalted Butter

1 Teaspoon Kosher Salt

1 Cup Unbleached Flour

4 Large Eggs

Vegetable Oil For Frying

Candied Cherries – Cut In Half For Garnish

2 Tablespoons Chopped Unsalted Pistachios For Garnish (Optional)

Confectioners’ Sugar

In a medium Bowl, whisk the ricotta, sugar and vanilla until smooth.  Stir in the chocolate chips and candied fruit.  Cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight. 

To make the puffs, bring the water, the butter and the kosher salt to a boil over medium heat.  Remove from the heat, add the flour all at once and stir well with a wooden spoon until the flour is completely incorporated. 

Return the saucepan to medium heat.  Cook, stirring constantly and turning the dough often, until the dough begins to leave a thin film on the bottom of the saucepan (about 3 minutes).  This dries the dough so the puffs will be crisp.  With a rubber spatula, scrape the dough into a large bowl.  Beat in the eggs one at a time.  Continue to beat until smooth – about 2 minutes more. 

In a deep heavy saucepan or deep fryer, heat about 3 inches of oil until the temperature reaches 375° F on a deep frying thermometer or until a small bit of the dough dropped into the oil sizzles and turns brown in 1 minute.  With a tablespoon, scoop up a rounded spoonful of batter and with another spoon; carefully push the dough into the oil so that it doesn’t splash.  Continue to add the dough by the spoonful without crowding the pan.  The dough will puff up and double in size so do not add too many at one time or they will stick together.  Cook, turning them often, until the dough breaks open – about 4 minutes.  Continue to cook 1 to 2 minute more or until crisp and golden brown.  Remove the fritters with a slotted spoon or skimmer and place them on paper towels to drain.  Repeat with the remaining dough.  Let cool slightly.

With a small knife, split fritter partway open.  Spoon the cream inside, allowing it to show through the split.  Press a cherry half into the cream and sprinkle with pistachios (optional).  (If it is not St. Joseph’s Day, you can just shake these, without the filling in a bag with confectioners’ sugar and serve like donuts). 

Dust the sfingi with confectioners’ sugar.  These are best right after they are made.  Makes 12

© Victoria Hart Glavin

tnyl-logo-combo

Sfingi

March 19, 2013

 It's Saint Joseph's Day and time to make Sfingi.

 

INGREDIENTS

Ricotta Cream Filling

One 15 Ounce Container Ricotta

3/4 Cup Confectioners’ Sugar

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

1/4 Cup Mini Chocolate Chips

1 Tablespoon Finely Chopped Candied Citron Or Orange Peel

 

Dough

1 Cup Water

4 Tablespoons (1/2 stick) Unsalted Butter

1 Teaspoon Salt

1 Cup Unbleached Flour

4 Large Eggs

Vegetable Oil For Frying

Candied Cherries – Cut In Half For Garnish

2 Tablespoons Chopped Unsalted Pistachios For Garnish (Optional)

Confectioners’ Sugar

 

In a medium Bowl, whisk the ricotta, sugar and vanilla until smooth.  Stir in the chocolate chips and candied fruit.  Cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight. 

To make the puffs, bring the water, the butter and the salt to a boil over medium heat.  Remove from the heat, add the flour all at once and stir well with a wooden spoon until the flour is completely incorporated. 

 

Return the saucepan to medium heat.  Cook, stirring constantly and turning the dough often, until the dough begins to leave a thin film on the bottom of the saucepan (about 3 minutes).  This dries the dough so the puffs will be crisp.  With a rubber spatula, scrape the dough into a large bowl.  Beat in the eggs one at a time.  Continue to beat until smooth – about 2 minutes more. 

 

In a deep heavy saucepan or deep fryer, heat about 3 inches of oil until the temperature reaches 375° F on a deep frying thermometer or until a small bit of the dough dropped into the oil sizzles and turns brown in 1 minute.  With a tablespoon, scoop up a rounded spoonful of batter and with another spoon, carefully push the dough into the oil so that it doesn’t splash.  Continue to add the dough by the spoonful without crowding the pan.  The dough will puff up and double in size so do not add too many at one time or they will stick together.  Cook, turning them often, until the dough breaks open – about 4 minutes.  Continue to cook 1 to 2 minute more or until crisp and golden brown.  Remove the fritters with a slotted spoon or skimmer and place them on paper towels to drain.  Repeat with the remaining dough.  Let cool slightly.

 

With a small knife, split fritter partway open.  Spoon the cream inside, allowing it to show through the split.  Press a cherry half into the cream and sprinkle with pistachios (optional).  (If it is not St. Joseph’s Day, you can just shake these, without the filling in a bag with confectioners’ sugar and serve like donuts). 

Dust the sfingi with confectioners’ sugar.  These are best right after they are made.  Makes 12

Sfingi or St. Joseph’s Day Zeppole

March 16, 2011

Sfingi

St. Joseph’s Day Zeppole

INGREDIENTS

Ricotta Cream Filling

One 15 Ounce Container Ricotta

¾ Cup Confectioners’ Sugar

1 Teaspoon Vanilla Extract

¼ Cup Mini Chocolate Chips

1 Tablespoon Finely Chopped Candied Citron Or Orange Peel

Dough

1 Cup Water

4 Tablespoons (1/2 stick) Unsalted Butter

1 Teaspoon Salt

1 Cup Unbleached Flour

4 Large Eggs

Vegetable Oil For Frying

Candied Cherries – Cut In Half For Garnish

2 Tablespoons Chopped Unsalted Pistachios For Garnish (Optional)

Confectioners’ Sugar

In a medium Bowl, whisk the ricotta, sugar and vanilla until smooth.  Stir in the chocolate chips and candied fruit.  Cover and refrigerate several hours or overnight. 

To make the puffs, bring the water, the butter and the salt to a boil over medium heat.  Remove from the heat, add the flour all at once and stir well with a wooden spoon until the flour is completely incorporated. 

Return the saucepan to medium heat.  Cook, stirring constantly and turning the dough often, until the dough begins to leave a thin film on the bottom of the saucepan (about 3 minutes).  This dries the dough so the puffs will be crisp.  With a rubber spatula, scrape the dough into a large bowl.  Beat in the eggs one at a time.  Continue to beat until smooth – about 2 minutes more. 

In a deep heavy saucepan or deep fryer, heat about 3 inches of oil until the temperature reaches 375° F on a deep frying thermometer or until a small bit of the dough dropped into the oil sizzles and turns brown in 1 minute.  With a tablespoon, scoop up a rounded spoonful of batter and with another spoon, carefully push the dough into the oil so that it doesn’t splash.  Continue to add the dough by the spoonfuls without crowding the pan.  The dough will puff up and double in size to do not add too many at one time or they will stick together.  Cook, turning them often, until the dough breaks open – about 4 minutes.  Continue to cook 1 to 2 minute more or until crisp and golden brown.  Remove the fritters with a slotted spoon or skimmer and place them on paper towels to drain.  Repeat with the remaining dough.  Let cool slightly.

With a small knife, split fritter partway open.  Spoon the cream inside, allowing it to show through the split.  Press a cherry half into the cream and sprinkle with pistachios (optional).  (If it is not St. Joseph’s Day, you can just shake these, without the filling in a bag with confectioners’ sugar and serve like donuts). 

Dust the sfingi with confectioners’ sugar.  These are best right after they are made.  Makes 12

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