Friday, 30 August 2013

Traditional Sicilian cuisine: Nucatoli biscuits

Sicily has an impressive culinary tradition and is full of delicious local specialties. In a trip to Sicily you should try local food to understand the authentic Italian food culture and why Sicilians are passionate about their local cusine.

One of the best ways to discover traditional cuisine in Sicily is have a passionate, local foodie expert guide you. We asked our local Italian chefs what we should try on a cooking holiday to Sicily and where.

Nucatoli,is a typical recipe of the picteresque Modica, in Sicily, a town famous for artisan chocolate production. If you are tempted to have a first hand experience of Sicilian food and tradition there is no better way than a cooking holiday to Sicily! In the meantime and while you are ticking off the days on the calendar why not try to make Nucatoli biscuits at home?


130 gr all-purpose flour
40 gr sugar
15 gr butter
1 egg
1 teaspoon of cinnamon powder
2 teaspoon of baking powder 

1 orange
130 gr orange blossom honey
130 gr walnut kernels
80 gr almonds
1 tablespoon of fig marmalade (you could also use dry figs)
70 gr Modica chocolate

Warm the honey and pour the orange zests and the marmalade without reaching the boiling point and then turn the cooker off. Grind the walnuts, toast and mince the almonds, pound the chocolate and add everything to the pot. Work it as if it was short crust pastry, then wrap it with the plastic wrap and chill.

Knead all the ingredients for the dough, then roll it until it is thin and rectangle-shaped. Then cut out 3x12cm rectangles with a scalloped pastry wheel. Sprinkle with flour.
Take the filling and work it into logs more or less a finger thick. Take one of them and place it on a rectangle of dough along the length of it. Do the same with the others. If the dough is still wet add a little flour to help you roll it.

Gently, using your fingertips, tap the length of the roll to make the filling and the dough adhere. Bend it to a S shape. Bake for approximately 15 minutes (until the top gets brown) at 160°C.
When cooled, sprinkle with confectioner’s sugar.

Nucatoli cookies are a traditional dessert that Sicilians eat during All Souls’ Day.and are very good at the end of the meal with a glass of Passito wine. Enjoy and if you are interested to find more about Sicilian cuisine and what our local Italian chefs recommend, have a look at our cookery holidays in Sicily.

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