Welcome to Paulina Cocina! Do you know today’s dessert? Apart from being delicious, the Easter cake has tradition, history and a special day. As her name indicates, she is strongly linked to Easter holidays and various traditions that revolve around this religious holiday. Depending on the country in which you are located, Easter has a specific pastry, but due to the symbolism it is common for them to have a round shape. In this case, the Easter cake is no exception.
But also, the homemade Easter cake is decorated like you have never seen before on any plate. Little chickens, eggs, feathers and a lot of other things that make her adorable. Not to mention how fluffy and sweet this recipe turns out.
Below, all the details.
Table of Contents
About the Easter monkey
The Easter mona is typical mainly in Spain, especially in the regions of Catalonia, Valencia and Murcia. It is also traditional in some areas of the Valencian Community, the Balearic Islands, Aragon and Castellón.
Starting at the beginning
Mona de Pascua is a traditional sweet that is consumed in Spain during the Holy Week and Easter celebrations. It is a tradition deeply rooted in the region and is a symbol of these festivities.
The Easter mona in Catalonia is a type of cake or sponge cake made with a sweet and spongy dough. It is usually round or crown-shaped and decorated with chocolate eggs, feathers , sugar or chocolate figurines and other festive elements.
The chocolate eggs that are placed in the mona are the most characteristic and represent the arrival of spring and fertility. In the original versions of the Mona de Pascua , boiled chicken eggs dyed with natural dyes were used. Over time, these eggs were replaced by chocolate eggs and sugar figures.
The name “Mona” comes from the Latin “munda” , which means “clean” or “pure”. It is believed that the term refers to the purity of the newly baptized, since in the beginning, the Easter cake was offered as a gift to the godchildren on the day of her baptism.
Mona de Pascua and a deep-rooted tradition
- The tradition of the Easter mona dates back to ancient times, with pagan roots in some cultures, such as the Romans and the Greeks , where cakes with eggs were usually offered to the gods as a symbol of fertility and rebirth. With the arrival of Christianity, this tradition was adopted and adapted.
- The Easter mona usually has a round or crown shape that is associated with the cycle of life and rebirth. The eggs placed on top of the monkey represent the resurrection of Christ and the arrival of spring, also symbolizing life and fertility.
- Mona de Pascua is a sweet that is enjoyed with family and shared with friends during Holy Week celebrations . It is common for godparents to give the monkey to her godchildren as a gesture of affection. In some regions, children go out to the countryside to have an Easter snack and spend the day outdoors.
- Mona de Pascua is usually consumed on Easter Monday (also known as Easter Monday) and during Holy Week. It is especially popular in some autonomous communities in Spain, such as Catalonia, Valencia and Murcia, as well as in some Latin American countries.
La mona day (Easter)
Easter Mona Day , also known as “ Mona Day ,” varies according to tradition and region. It is generally celebrated on Easter Monday, which is the day after Easter Sunday , and is part of the Holy Week and Easter festivities.
In many places, Easter Monday is considered a holiday and it is when families and friends get together to enjoy Easter fun and share moments of conviviality. In Catalonia , for example, Easter Monday is an important day for the Mona tradition, where godchildren receive a gift from their godparents.
Its importance on those dates is very similar to that of the Easter bagel and Easter eggs .
How do you eat Easter cakes?
The way to eat Easter cakes in Catalonia can be in different ways. Generally , the Mona is cut into portions and shared with family or friends during a meeting or snack. Each diner can choose their favorite portion, which may include a chocolate egg , and enjoy it along with drinks such as cava (sparkling wine) or soft drinks.
Especially in rural areas , it is also common to go out to the countryside to have an Easter Mona snack and spend the day outdoors in a tradition known as “fer la mona al camp” (make the monkey in the field). In this activity, families enjoy the candy in a festive and convivial atmosphere that seems like an excellent way to enjoy Easter.
Easter cake recipe
Yield : 10 servings
Preparation time : 2 hours
- 500 g strong flour
- 100 g of sugar
- 100 ml warm milk
- 50 ml olive oil
- 25 g of fresh yeast or 1 sachet of dry yeast (7 g)
- 3 eggs
- Lemon or orange zest
- 1 pinch of salt
- chocolate eggs
- Powdered sugar
- Decorative feathers or sugar figurines (optional)
How to make Easter cake
- In a bowl, dissolve the yeast in the warm milk with a teaspoon of sugar and let it sit bubbling for a few minutes. In another large bowl, mix the flour, sugar, pinch of salt and zest.
- Add the activated yeast, eggs and olive oil to the mixture and knead on a floured surface for 10 minutes, until smooth and elastic. Place in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with a clean cloth and let rest in a warm place for 1-2 hours.
- Preheat the oven to 180°C. Divide the dough into two equal parts and shape them into a round or crown. Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper.
- Bake for 25-30 minutes or until golden and cooked through. Remove from the oven and let them cool completely. Before serving, sprinkle icing sugar on top to give them a finishing touch.
- Decorate the Easter Mona with chocolate eggs and, if desired, add decorative feathers or sugar figurines