March 11, 2011

What's In Your Easter Basket? This year, make it a Josh Early Hand Rolled Easter Egg.

by Barry C. Dobil Jr.

You know Spring is just around the corner when you start to see those flower buds pop out of the ground, hear baseball on the radio, and begin to see Easter decorations in the stores. We know it is Spring here at Josh Early when we begin production of our delicious hand-rolled Easter eggs. Looks like Spring is here…we begin production of the eggs this week!

As Easter approaches, I've been thinking a lot about the tradition of these hand-rolled Easter eggs. Not only are they a tradition for our family business (we use the same recipe developed by my great-grandfather over eight decades ago), but these eggs are a tradition for our customers, too.

When customers come into our stores each Spring looking for the famous eggs, we hear stories of how their parents filled Easter baskets with Josh Early eggs, and how they, in turn, want to fill their children's baskets with nothing but the best. Our customers have come to know the difference between biting into a confection that's handmade, and one that's not. That's why they keep coming back to us each Spring for these chocolate Easter treats.

One of the greatest accounts of Josh Early Easter tradition recently came to us in the form of a letter:
Dear Early's - attached is a picture taken by my Dad dated April 1959. My older brother was a paper boy and delivered to the Early's and entered my name in the $25 Easter Basket contest. Pictured is older brother Chris B. and myself Tony. Best regards Tony B.

The picture made me chuckle as it tells so much: while the style of a Josh Early Easter basket has (luckily) changed in the 52 years since this picture was taken, the chocolates and candies we put inside have not. Josh Early Candies is all about tradition and to this day, we fill our baskets with the same traditional chocolates and candies found in this picture. Perhaps none more important than our hand rolled eggs.

Our hand rolled eggs are a masterpiece themselves. From start to finish, eight different Josh Early confectioners with a combined total of over 156 years of Josh Early experience will be involved in making each and every hand rolled egg. Here's how we do it.

To make a butter cream egg, we cook a batch of our vanilla butter cream and chocolate butter cream with the same recipe developed by my great grandfather back in the 1930's.

Next we combine layers of vanilla and chocolate butter cream

We take the "brick" of vanilla/chocolate butter cream and cut it into strips

Each strip is cut into pieces and hand rolled into the shape of an egg. This is a skill that takes weeks, even months, to master. The goal is for the finished piece to have 50% chocolate butter cream and 50% vanilla butter cream split down the middle on each egg.

The eggs are run down our enrobing line and coated in our signature dark chocolate.

The chocolate coated egg is then hand decorated with a unique chocolate mark and decoration. Every single hand rolled egg ever made by Josh Early Candies over the past 73 years has been hand decorated by one of only four people: My great grandfather who taught my grandfather who taught my father who taught me.

The finished product is sold in our traditional "window box."

We hope to become part of your family's Easter tradition this holiday season. Click here to browse our wide variety of hand rolled Easter eggs.