One of the nicest memories I have from a childhood is my grandmother's kitchen in Easter time. Actually, is there anyone in Dalmatia - or anywhere else - who don't have similar memory?
Main reason in my case, or in Split's case is called sirnica (pron. like seernytsah). Anyone here will know what is it, traditional sweet cake-bread with sugar sprinkled on top. To those who speak some Croatian, this pastry's name might be confusing. Sirnica would usually mean something made of, or filled with cheese (sir in Croatian), like Bosnian-style cottage cheese pie with the same name. However, in our sirnica there is no cheese. Its name might be explained by sirnica's look; it's yellow and compact inside, just like cheese. Other explanation is the way of preparing it. Dough is supposed to be left aside for some time until it rises, and Croatian word "siriti" can be associated with that.
As I said, sirnica is a symbol of home-making for holidays, but it would be kind of optimistic to expect any visitor will rent a place to bake their own sirnica. There is a solution, and you will need it after walking around streets filled with the same sweet flavour of granny's kitchen. Sirnica is available practically everywhere, every pastry shop has it, and it starts selling at least a month before the Easter. Some will be bad, not even close to what we want in these days, some will be OK, and some will be a masterpiece.
And some will become a custom for itself.
It's been almost 80 years since the Kirigin family opened its pastry shop, today it's called Tradicija. However, forget that, once when you come to an old town, just ask anyone for Kirigin, and you will be led there unmistakeably.
Getting close to Kirigin's there is another clue that will lead you there, your nose. Ona a day before Easter Sunday a queue in front of Tradicija is sometime as long as the whole Bosanska Street where it's based. Their production capacity is not as bih as demand.
You want to look and act like a local? Stop, join Kirigin's line and become a part of Split spirit.