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Massa Sovada: Azorean Sweet Bread - not just for Easter



You might have seen “Portuguese Sweet Bread” for sale in local grocery stores.  It is common in New England and in Hawaii. But those in the know, know that is really Azores Sweet bread – and here is the story… Massa Sovada is a kind of sweet bread made in the Azores for Easter, or other religious celebrations like the Holy Spirit festivities. As it is generally associated to holidays and times of sharing, massa sovada is a delicacy close to the heart for every Azorean.


Massa sovada can be translated literally as beaten or punched dough to illustrate how the dough must be kneaded hard in order to incorporate all of the ingredients and give it the characteristic texture and taste.


The sweet bread recipes vary since it is such a common tradition within many families that passed them between each other. In common they are generally made with ingredients such as flour, sugar, milk, eggs and butter.


For Easter in particularly, the sweet bread can be baked with hardboiled eggs placed in the center of the loaf and it will also be called “folar”. 




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