Sunday, April 24, 2011


A French Easter tradition, like grand-mère used to make: oeufs à la coque en chocolat--emptied egg shells filled with melted chocolate, cooled and hardened. These are simply peeled and eaten. Another variation is to fill the eggshell with a creamier chocolate ganache that can be eaten with a spoon, and served in a coquetier for a yummy Easter dessert.

Who brings the eggs?
In Alsace and Loraine it's the lapin de Pâques or Easter Bunny, as in Germanic and Anglo-Saxon countries, who hides chocolate and candy eggs in the garden for children to find on Easter morning. In the rest of France, however, the popular legend is that the chocolate Easter eggs fall from church bells "returning" from Rome where they had "voyaged" during the three days before Easter. In fact, during those three days, church bells in France are silenced, then on Easter Sunday burst with sound celebrating the resurrection of Jesus.
Le voyage des cloches à Rome.
Engraving by Grandville.

une grand-mère:  a grandmother
un oeuf à la coque:  a soft-boiled egg
un coquetier:  an eggcup
une ganache:  a whipped filling of chocolate and cream used in desserts such as cakes and truffles
un lapin:  a rabbit
les cloches d'eglise:  the church bells

There is a distinction in the French language between "la Pâque" the original Jewish celebration and "les Pâques" the multi-faceted Christian celebration. Thus:
Joyeuse Pâque, i.e. Pâque without an "s" is said to wish a Jewish person a Happy Pessah, and Joyeuses Pâques with an "s" is said to wish a person of the Christian faith a Happy Easter. There is no difference in the pronunciation!

More on eggs...

©2011 P.B.Lecron

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