Two for Tuesday: St. Joseph’s Day Zeppole/Sfinge

De Robertis is now closed.

Happy St. Joseph’s Day!  Two for Tuesday just happened to fall on St. Joseph’s Day, so the two are the two variations of St. Joseph’s Day treats–zeppole and sfinge.  The zeppole are a kind of cream puff filled with custard cream, sometimes topped with a cherry (or not).  These are Neapolitan treats (from Naples).  Sfinge are also a type of cream puff with a cannoli-cream filling.  These are Sicilian.  I prefer the sfinge because I prefer the cannoli-cream filling.  But both are good.  My favorites are from Monteleone’s bakery in Jersey City, New Jersey (a few blocks from Journal Square).

Monteleone's sfinge (l) and zeppole

Monteleone’s sfinge (l) and zeppole

This bakery goes way back and was the bakery where my dad’s family got their pastries.

Monteleone's 2

(Little India is in this area in Jersey City, and it used to be largely Italian and Polish.)  I also like the ones from Villabate bakery in Bensonhurst, Brooklyn.

In Manhattan, since there are fewer Italians living in the borough, the turnover for these is not as large as it is in the outer boroughs where you will wait on a line to get them. You can find them at Rocco on Bleecker Street in the West Village; Ferrara‘s, Caffe Roma (I’m guessing they have them–didn’t actually go), Cafe Palermo (ditto) in Little Italy; Bruno Bakery in Noho and Veniero’s

Veniero's pastry

and De Robertis

De Robertis pastry

in the East Village.

Ferrara zeppole (l) and sfinge

Ferrara zeppole (l) and sfinge

I got some at Ferrara in Little Italy.  Another customer asked a waiter and counter staff for “St. Joseph’s Day” pastries, but no one knew what they were even though they were sitting on top of the pastry case.  So I told him where they were.  The times they are a changin’.

Veniero's zeppole (l) and sfinge

Veniero’s zeppole (l) and sfinge

I also got them at Veniero’s and De Robertis’s.  If you are curious and want to try them, I’d say any Italian bakery in Manhattan is a good bet.

De Robertis zeppole (l) and sfinge

De Robertis zeppole (l) and sfinge

6 responses to “Two for Tuesday: St. Joseph’s Day Zeppole/Sfinge

  1. I had the same thought this morning, and made the rounds of 3 bakeries in north Jersey – D’anna’s in Garfield, Nicola’s in Montclair, Gencarella’s in Bloomfield. Got 1 or 2 each of the zeppole and sfinge from each place. Took them home and wife and I sampled them all – Gencarellis had best pastry/filling, Nicola’s came in second. D’annas was good, but not as good as the others. And yes, we have leftovers and a couple to give away tomorrow. Was a great follow-up to the other St. Joseph’s Day treat I brought home from LaSicilia in Belleville – Pasta con Sarde.

  2. Angie Ventimiglio

    We called it Pasta San Guiseppe and there are variations of ingredients. One Cousin makes it with all kinds of beans and the others do with the Sarde.

    • We also called it Pasta Modica – Sicilan for toasted, flavored Mollica or breadcrumbs. We make with the anchovies, sardines, currents, fennel, pignoli, garlic, little tomato(sometimes), and those breadcrumbs on top. Sister and mother bakes it, I like it fresh and wet. And of course, it’s followed by the sfingi

  3. Wow, this is a great source of info on where to get these delicious pastries in NYC and Jersey City. Thanks for stopping by my blog.

  4. Pingback: Zeppole di San Giuseppe | Hunting for the Very Best

  5. Pingback: St. Joseph’s Day Sfinge and Zeppole | Hunting for the Very Best

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