Zeppole a Vento

Honey-Coated Fritters

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Preparation info

  • Difficulty

    Medium

  • Makes About

    30

Appears in

The Italian Regional Cookbook

The Italian Regional Cookbook

By Valentina Harris

Published 2017

  • About

The ingredients for this very sticky, honey-coated Calabrian sweet could not be simpler, yet the skill of the local cooks transforms them into something that is pretty to look at and delicious to eat. Zeppole are traditionally made on La Festa di San Giuseppe (Saint Joseph’s Day) on 19 March. In Rome, Naples and Sicily, these little pastries are sometimes sold on street corners and are given away as gifts. In certain parts of Calabria, savoury anchovy zeppole are eaten on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

Ingredients

  • 500 ml/17 fl oz/generous 2 cups cold water
  • 500 g/1 ¼ lb/5 cups very fine plain/all-purpose white flour or cake flour, sifted twice
  • light olive oil, for deep-frying
  • 90 ml/6 tbsp clear honey

Method

  1. Pour the water into a heavy pan and bring it to the boil. Gradually trickle in the flour, stirring constantly. Continue to stir until the mixture forms a dough and comes away from the sides of the pan. Turn the dough into a bowl and leave to cool completely.

  2. Pinch off small pieces of dough and roll them into small sausage shapes about 5cm/2in long and 5mm/¼in wide. Squeeze each sausage in the middle to make a bow shape.

  3. Heat the oil in a large pan until a cube of bread dropped into it sizzles instantly.

  4. Add the dough shapes, in batches, and fry until they rise to the surface of the oil and turn golden and crisp.
  5. As each batch cooks, lift the bows out with a slotted spoon and drain on kitchen paper. Place them on a warmed heatproof platter and keep them warm while cooking the remaining shapes.
  6. Heat the honey in a small pan. When it bubbles, pour it all over the fritters. Allow the fritters to cool slightly, then serve them while warm.