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Make This Year's Easter More Egg-citing With This Italian Tradition

These giant chocolate Easter eggs are Giada's favorite way to celebrate the spring

Easter celebrations all over the world use many of the same images to symbolize life, fertility and rebirth; think bunnies, lambs, and of course eggs. In Italy, however, the humble Easter egg gets an especially glorious upgrade - by super-sizing it.
The practice of gifting oversized chocolate eggs at Easter took off after World War II, when war-weary Italian citizens were looking for ways to once again find joy in everyday life. Chocolate, which had become a popular treat in the 19th century, was the perfect answer. An inexpensive indulgence, chocolate eggs were accessible to anyone with a few lire to spare, securing their place in the hearts of Italians across economic backgrounds.
Italian Easter Eggs

Extravagantly wrapped in colorful foil, the enormous eggs make a festive addition to any Easter celebration. Some are decorated with colored chocolate or royal icing, some come flavored with hazelnut, and many feature a little trinket or toy inside the hollow cavity, from keychains and costume jewelry to stuffed animals. (To make sure you get a treat, look for the word sorprese - surprises - on the Italian label!)
In Italy, local pasticcerias make their own eggs, in sizes from teeny tiny all the way up to enormous, 80-pound behemoths. They'll also let you bring in your own gifts to place inside, and a popular trend these days is to stash an engagement ring box inside the chocolate - talk about an unexpected proposal!
A favorite since she was a kid, Giada gets hers every year at a local Italian market, where they have a great selection of milk and dark chocolate eggs. These days, it's Jade's turn to unwrap the colorful foil and give them a mighty crack to reveal the treasure inside!

If you don't have an Italian shop in your town, don't despair!

During the holidays, we sell authentic Italian chocolate Easter eggs in our online pantry!


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