Italian Christmas Delicacy: Buccellato from Sicily

Sicilian sweet with dried figs and pastry on the Christmas table— Photo by al1962

Sicilian sweet with dried figs and pastry on the Christmas table— Photo by al1962

This typical delicacy from Sicily is called in the local dialect Cuccidati. It is a fig-stuffed cookie traditionally served during Christmas holidays. According to some, its origin goes back to centuries, and the dough is renowned for its softness. This particular fragrant and sweet pastry is baked in the oven and could be enjoyed for several days.

Ingredients:

2 cups raisins, 3/4 pound pitted dates, 3/4 cup sugar, 2 small navel oranges, peeled and quartered, 1/3 pound dried figs, 1/3 cup chopped walnuts, 1/4 cup water.

Dough:

1 cup shortening, 1 cup sugar, 2 eggs, 1/4 cup 2% milk, 2 teaspoons vanilla extract, 3 and half cups all-purpose flour, 1 teaspoon salt, 1 teaspoon baking powder,1 teaspoon baking soda.

Glaze:

2 cups confectioners' sugar, 2 to 3 tablespoons 2% milk

Directions:

Place the first seven ingredients in a food processor; cover and process until finely chopped. Set aside. In a large bowl, cream shortening and sugar until light and fluffy. Beat in the eggs, milk and vanilla. Combine the flour, salt, baking powder and baking soda; gradually add to creamed mixture and mix well. Divide dough into four portions; cover and refrigerate for 1 hour. Roll out each portion between two sheets of waxed paper into a 16-in. x 6-in. rectangle. Spread 1 cup filling lengthwise down the center of each. Starting at a long side, fold dough over filling; fold the other side over the top. Pinch seams and edges to seal. Cut each rectangle diagonally into 1-in strips. Place seam side down on parchment paper-lined baking sheets. Bake at 400° for 10-14 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Cool for 10 minutes before removing from pans to wire racks to cool completely. Combine confectioners' sugar and enough milk to achieve desired consistency; drizzle over cookies. Store in an airtight container.

 

Support L'Italo-Americano Foundation through its fundraising efforts that allow us to promote and preserve the Italian culture and heritage in the US. Enter to win fantastic prizes Including a vacation in Florence. (20% will be donated to the “I Love Norcia” association to support the reconstruction of the town, dramatically hit by the recent earthquake).

Receive More Stories Like This In Your Inbox

Recommended

Mascherone, home protection the old-fashioned way

Today most self-respecting homeowners install alarms and locks to protect their homes, but step back to the 16th century and the preference was for...

Le Buchette del Vino, Florence's Little Wine Tabernacles

Let’s say you find yourself in Florence on a fiery-hot summer afternoon, walking around the city’s narrow streets in a carefree manner. Let’s also...

Coffee and “scaramanzia,” an entirely made in Italy match

My neighbor is from Naples. We bonded over our personal obsession on a Spanish novela and our love for coffee: we’d invite each other for one several...

“Dream it. Discover it. Experience it. Italy.”

This is Vitalia Tours and Celebrations ’ invitation to each of its guests. Anyone that joins the Vitalia adventure signs on for an “experiential tour...

The Small World of Salento

Whether you choose to drive through the heel of Italy, from Lecce to Otranto, or from the Ionian to the Adriatic coast, the breathtaking town of...

Weekly in Italian

Recent Issues