Wednesday, June 19 2024

Carnival (carnivale) runs from “fat Thursday , giovedi grasso” until “fat Tuesday, martedi grasso”.

Traditionally people dress up in masks and costumes, but outside of Venice, this is mostly only done by small children. However everybody uses it as an excuse to eat lots of sweet things.

This is Italy after all  This recipe is for one of the most common biscuits.

They have many regional names,  bugie,  cenci,  crostoli,  frappe,  galani,  sfrappole ,but here they are known as chiacchiere. A rough translation would be “chatty biscuits”.

There are many variations on the basic recipe, some include  grappa or wine, or lemon zest, but this is one of the simplest.






  • 2 1/4 cups of all purpose flour
  • 10 tbsp of potato starch (if you can’t find this, use all purpose flour)
  • 4 tsp of unsalted butter
  • 5 tsp of icing sugar
  • 3 medium eggs
  • A few drops of vanilla essence or a sachet of vanilla extract
  • 1 tsp of baking powder
  • Oil for deep frying




Mix all the ingredients together to form a dough.

Knead it for a couple of minutes until it’s smooth.

Roll it out very thinly. If the dough is too sticky, dust with a little flour.

You are aiming for about the thickness of lasagne. In fact, if you have a pasta rolling machine, that would be perfect.

Cut out rectangles of about 6×3 cm (2×1 inch) and make a slit in the middle. A pastry wheel is good for this.

Deep fry in hot oil (about 190°c 375°f) until they are puffed up and lightly golden.

Drain on kitchen paper and dust with icing sugar.

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