Sweet and savory: Easter food traditions in Philadelphia

Katie Katro Image
Friday, April 7, 2023
Sweet and savory: Easter food traditions in Philadelphia
People across the Delaware Valley headed out Friday morning to pick up their kielbasa and desserts for Easter dinner.

PHILADELPHIA (WPVI) -- Outside Czerw's Polish Kielbasa in Philadelphia's Port Richmond section, the line seemed to never end as people stood outside to get their favorite Easter treat.

Owner John Czerw says the kielbasa is made using his grandfather's recipe and smoked in a brick oven.

"To see all these people out to come out and see us just to buy kielbasa to put on their Easter table, it's just it makes all the hard work worth it at the end of the day," said Czerw.

Some said they stood in line for around one hour.

"I carry my mother-in-law's Polish traditions," said Helen Lorandeau, from Feasterville, Pennsylvania.

Many looking for Easter dessert stopped by Stock's Bakery where the line was moving fast.

"When we see our customers we're like, 'Hey, I saw you last year here. Same line, same time,'" said Kristine Stock-DeCarles, owner of Stock's Bakery.

Many customers say they come here every Good Friday to pick up their sweet treats.

"We always get a brick or two or three and we get an Easter egg for Easter on Sunday," said Renee Gray, from Bensalem, Pennsylvania.

Others say haven't been back in years but they can still remember the sugary tastes.

"I grew up in Philly and I can remember being a teenager, if not younger, coming to Stock's to get birthday cakes and special occasion cakes," said Gwendolyn MacCalla, of Vineland, New Jersey.

Whether people packed something sweet or salty for Sunday's dinner, they said the food on their table will be part of a tradition.

"We've had it for about 20 years now. We like the butter cake and we like the pound cake of course," said Sally Ortiz, of Williamstown, New Jersey.

"It's a family tradition. We always have the kielbasa with the Easter dinner we want to make it special," said Shrieve Marshall, of Burlington, New Jersey.

You can see how committed people are to keeping their Easter traditions alive.