There were so many things I missed about being “home” when we lived in Florida. Clearly, I missed my parents and my sisters. I missed things like the Philadelphia Zoo and the Mummers Parade. But Philly foods are hard to replicate, no matter how hard people in other regions try.
When we first came back to live in South Jersey 13 years ago, I enjoyed many of my Philly food favorites. I sampled hoagies from all our old stomping grounds, and we grabbed cheesesteaks from Pat’s and Geno’s – just to be on the safe side of the “best” cheesesteak in the city. I ate more TastyKakes than I care to admit, and even managed to keep a stash of Goldenberg’s Peanut Chews handy.
But then comes Easter. And for a few short weeks every year, a Philly area staple starts popping up. Zitner’s Fine Confections has been pumping out delicious chocolate covered Easter eggs since Sam and Annie Zitner first began selling them out of their home in 1920. There is a lot to be said for all of the Zitner’s eggs – the butter cream are among my favorite anywhere, and the peanut butter soar past Reeses peanut butter eggs. But there’s a soft spot in my heart for the Butter Krak.
These dark chocolate covered eggs are buttery and sweet, and instead of the choppy little pieces of coconut you find in a lot of coconut cream eggs, the Butter Krak eggs have longer pieces of coconut, that give you a real punch of coconut when you bite in. When I was a kid, the eggs were always kind of odd looking – almost fuzzy looking – because of the long strands of coconut poking through the chocolate, but through the years, I think we lost some of that due to the use of more contemporary machines. I miss that texture, but the taste is still there – creamy, coconutty, and delicious.
I look forward to Easter every year – the ham and potato salad, the egg dying with my kids, making the Easter baskets (ummm, I mean suggesting to the Easter bunny how to fill the baskets) – but Zitner’s has shouted “It’s Easter” in our house since I was a little girl. I’m so happy for those nostalgic moments I can share with my girls.