Candied Fruit and Nut Roll


Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • Serves


Appears in

The Italian Regional Cookbook

The Italian Regional Cookbook

By Valentina Harris

Published 2017

  • About

This is a traditional cake of Trieste, in the far north-east of Italy, which for centuries has been one of the most important Adriatic ports. Trieste is famous for its cafés and patisseries, which celebrate the culinary talents and ingredients of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. This spiral-shaped bread is filled with nuts and candied fruit, scented with grappa and enriched with butter, eggs and sugar. It’s wonderful with coffee or hot chocolate, or at the end of a meal with dessert wine.


  • 30 g/ oz fresh/compressed yeast
  • 675 g/ lb/6 cups plain/all-purpose flour, plus extra for dusting
  • 5 eggs
  • 150 g/5 oz/¾ cup sugar
  • 150 g/5 oz/10 tbsp unsalted butter, softened, plus extra for greasing
  • 30 ml/2 tbsp grappa
  • grated rind of 1 lemon
  • 90-105 ml/6-7 tbsp milk
  • 75 g/3 oz/½ cup sultanas/golden raisins
  • 60 ml/4 tbsp dessert wine
  • 75 ml/5 tbsp unblanched almonds
  • 90 ml/6 tbsp shelled walnuts
  • 40 g/ oz/¼ cup mixed/candied peel
  • 40 g/ oz/¼ cup candied orange peel
  • 30 ml/2 tbsp pine nuts
  • grated rind of 1 orange
  • 15 ml/1 tbsp dried fine breadcrumbs
  • sea salt


  1. Put the yeast in a bowl and mix in 75-90 ml/5-6 tbsp tepid water. Stir in 115 g/4 oz/1 cup flour, then leave to stand for about 20 minutes.
  2. Beat 3 eggs. Put them into a large bowl with the remaining flour, 115 g/4 oz/generous ½ cup sugar, 115 g/4 oz/½ cup butter, 15 ml/1 tbsp grappa, a pinch of salt and the lemon rind.
  3. Add the yeast and flour mixture and knead together. Remove from the bowl and knead to form a soft dough, adding the milk to the mixture, a little at a time. You may not need to add all the milk.

  4. Put the dough back into the bowl, cover with a dampened dish towel and leave to rise in a warm place for 2 hours, or until doubled in size. Meanwhile, put the sultanas into a bowl and pour over the wine to cover. Leave to swell.
  5. Put the almonds and walnuts into a bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover. Leave to stand for 2-3 minutes, then peel off the skins. Chop the blanched nuts and the candied peels, then put them into a bowl with the pine nuts and grated orange rind. Drain the sultanas and add, along with the remaining grappa. Mix well.

  6. Heat 15 g/½ oz/1 tbsp butter in a frying pan, add the breadcrumbs and fry until crispy. Add to the fruit.
  7. Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas 5. Grease and flour a baking sheet. Separate 1 egg. Beat the yolk and set aside. Put the white into a clean, grease-free bowl and whisk until stiff. Mix the remaining egg into the fruit mixture, then fold in the egg white.
  8. Knock back or punch down the dough on a floured surface and roll out to 2 cm/¾ in thick. Spread the filling over the dough, then roll it up to make a spiral. Transfer to the baking sheet and brush with the egg yolk. Sprinkle with the remaining sugar and dot with the remaining butter. Bake for 45 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked through.