Oh, Dearest Mother, Sweetest Virgin of Altagracia, our Patroness. You are our Advocate and to you we recommend our needs. You are our Teacher and like disciples we come to learn from the example of your holy life. You are our Mother, and like children, we come to offer you all of the love of our hearts. Receive, dearest Mother, our offerings and listen attentively to our supplications. Amen.



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Elizabeth
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Posted: March 18 2005 at 11:59am | IP Logged Quote Elizabeth

I'm hosting a parish potluck pasta party for the Feast of Saint Joseph tomorrow. I'm feeling a little inspiration-less. My dear Italian grandmother died on the feast of St. Joseph the year I was engaged. Despite my heritage, I've never really made it the party it should be. What are some ideas for celebrating St. Joseph? Personally, I'm hoping he'll answer my novena by his feast day, but that's another thread

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Molly Smith
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Posted: March 18 2005 at 12:34pm | IP Logged Quote Molly Smith

Elizabeth, is there ever a time when you're NOT planning a parish party ! You must have a very fun parish !

Oh, sorry, no ideas...just ribbing...

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Elizabeth
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Posted: March 18 2005 at 12:39pm | IP Logged Quote Elizabeth

Molly Smith wrote:
Elizabeth, is there ever a time when you're NOT planning a parish party ! You must have a very fun parish !

Oh, sorry, no ideas...just ribbing...

Ummm...no...I cooked 25 pounds of lamb on Tuesday for a seder supper. My house stills smells like a middle-eastern restaurant I never want to eat lamb again...the goal, as of this time last year, was to introduce to families the idea of celebrating the liturgical year. So, I sat down with the pastor and planned out parties around the year. We got a new pastor in October and he's been pretty good about it. Frankly, I'm burning out a little bit here (I think the lamb did me in ) and I just can't get motmivated for this particular party. It's tomorrow after the vigil Mass and so far, all I've done is buy paper plates and utensils...

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JennGM
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Posted: March 18 2005 at 12:45pm | IP Logged Quote JennGM

Elizabeth,

I was just looking over my stuff and trying to get an idea for our family. What great things you try with your parish. Next year, whereever you might be host a St. Joseph Altar. I should try that at my parish! You're an inspiration to me!

I love pouring over cookbooks, but I usually end up with minimalist recipes! To start with, jump over to St. Joseph's Feast Day at catholicculture.org to get some numerous ideas and recipes. The list is really long of just traditional St. Joseph recipes, but most famous is the St. Josephís Sfinge or cream puffs. If you want to expand on Italian pasta, though, the list is endless!

I'm looking for something without eggs, wheat and milk, so my list narrows. I know you're going gluten free, so a dessert I found you might be able to do is Fritelli di Riso which is made in Tuscany for St. Joseph's Day. This recipe I found from Food Network, that I would change the flour for either rice flour combo or oat flour. I also have this version:
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1 cup rice
3 1/2 cups milk
1 cup water
3 eggs, separated
Juice of one lemon
3 tsp. sugar
1 orange, diced
small amount of flour
vegetable oil for frying

In a large saucepan, combine rice, milk, and water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until liquid is absorbed and rice is tender to bite. Add lemon juice and sugar. Stir. Let mixture stand overnight. Mixture will be firm.

Add egg yolks and mix well. In a separate bowl beat egg whites until soft peaks form. Fold into rice mixture and blend. Stir in diced orange. Add small amount of flour if consistency is too soft. Drop batter by rounded teaspoonfuls into hot oil (375). Fry until golden brown. Drain on paper toweling. Dust with confectioner's sugar before serving.
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Iím not good at pasta ideas. Iím thinking cold pasta salads, with meat and veggies. Love that kind of salad! I've also discovered brown rice pasta, and that has opened up new avenues for me!

I'm the cookbook queen, so if you need something, I'd be glad to provide. I've put quite a few online at CatholicCulture.org, but I have tons more for St. Joseph.

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Posted: March 18 2005 at 12:59pm | IP Logged Quote JennGM

I was also thinking, if it's potluck, let everyone else bring the food. Bring something really simple like the St. Joseph Altars have -- The Virtual St. Joseph Altar has some great ideas. I'm definitely not suggesting doing an Altar, because that takes much cooperation and time. But since you're hosting, what exactly are you looking for? Information to pass out, extra food to make?

How about the "goodie bag"?
The Goodie Bag:
Visitors to St. Joseph Altars are given small paper bags containing a few blessed items from the Altar. The bags usually contain a holy card and a small medal. Various cookies or small breads may also be in the bag.

The most interesting item found in the goodie bag is the fava bean. In Sicily, the fava was fodder for cattle. During a great famine the people resorted to eating them to survive. They were considered lucky to have favas to eat, hence the fava bean is also known as a "lucky bean." Some believe that the pantry that contains a fava bean will never be bare. The fava, or lucky bean, serves as a token of the Altar - a reminder of God's provisions through the intercession of St. Joseph.

I bought this book from Catholic Shop two years ago: Saint Joseph Altars . The pictures are just stunning and the text is very interesting.

Traditionally, St. Joseph meals are meatless, particularly related to the Altar. Two simple pasta dishes that keep coming to mind: Pasta Milanese and pasta con mudrica or pasta with sawdust. This is spaghetti tossed with olive oil and breadcrumbs, which resembles sawdust, representing St. Josephís carpentry work. I also found some other simple pasta recipes on this page.


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Posted: March 18 2005 at 1:02pm | IP Logged Quote JennGM

Hallmark had a simple presentation on St. Joseph's Day.

Sorry, I'm such a geek when it comes to this subject!

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guitarnan
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Posted: March 18 2005 at 4:46pm | IP Logged Quote guitarnan

Elizabeth,

In Italy today, St. Joseph's feast day is also Father's Day. They don't do the big Hallmark thing, exactly (although it's getting a bit more that way, with ads for gifts and stuff like that). I'd suggest a special blessing for all the dads present at your dinner...what a nice thing. I wish our Father's Day was on March 19!

I don't recall special foods being served in our region (Lazio) while we lived there...or any other special traditions. I would remember them if they'd existed, because moms get little branches of mimosa blossoms on Mother's Day and women get gifts (Hallmark effect!) on the Feste delle Donne, Women's Day.

Tiny suggestion...hope it helps!


As far as food, I suggest easy, easy stuff like baked ziti. A Napolitan trick I recently learned is to swirl about half a cup of ricotta cheese into the tomato sauce, then add the rest of the cheese you're using. I used to layer cheese on top of the sauce (like lasagne) but it tastes better this way, IMHO. Also, if you add a tablespoon of olive oil to the sauce at the beginning of cooking it tastes richer. I don't know if gluten-free pasta is available here; it is in Italy, definitely. Worth looking into.

Now I am hungry.



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Posted: March 18 2005 at 7:01pm | IP Logged Quote materdei7

At the parish in Southern Cal. where I grew up, they would(and still do) have a BIG St. Joseph's Table, where lots of wonderful things(sweet deserts and breads, cookies, cakes, etc)were sold after all the Masses, and the money given to the poor and needy that our parish supported. Did I mention that it was BIG and Wonderful Maybe during Lent the St. Joseph table always looked so wonderful! We would buy certain items and freeze them for tasting on Easter Morning. Happy Feast Day, and St. Joseph Pray for Us,


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