Sunday, June 16 2024

Bocconotti are shortbread pastries, typical of the Abruzzi, Apulia,Calabria and Basilicata traditions, whose filling varies according to the region.

In Abruzzo the filling consists of chocolate, almonds and cinnamon; in Calabria we find bergamot and fig jam, while in Basilicata black cherry jam is used; and finally in the Apulian bocconotto we find custard.

In Apulian pastry shops, you can often find this variant filled with ricotta cheese.

It is not possible to date the origin of the Bocconotto recipe, which possibly dates back to the 18th century.




MAKES 15 Bocconotti


  • 5 cups of all purpose flour
  • 3 cups of sugar
  • 6 eggs
  • 3 cups of sheep’s ricotta
  • 3 tbps of milk
  • 1 1/3 cups of butter
  • grated zest of 1 lemon
  • salt to taste
  • powdered sugar to taste



1. Prepare the shortcrust pastry. Separate the whites from two eggs and set aside.
2. In a bowl, work the flour with the butter.
3. Add half of the sugar, the grated lemon zest, and the milk.
4. Continue working the dough on a work surface to make it smoother and homogeneous.
5. Shape the dough into a ball and wrap it in plastic wrap.
6. Let it rest in the refrigerator for half an hour.
7. Meanwhile, prepare the filling. Mix the remaining egg yolks (always keeping the egg whites aside) and the remaining sugar in a bowl.
8. Incorporate the ricotta and the grated lemon zest.
9. Separately, beat all the egg whites with a pinch of salt.
10. Gently fold the beaten whites into the mixture.
11. Set aside.
12. Preheat the oven (conventional) to 200°C (about 400°F).
13. Butter and flour the molds.
14. Roll out the shortcrust pastry, form circles about 4.7 inches in diameter, and line the molds with them.
15. Also, form circles about 2.8 inches in diameter that will be used to close the pastries.
16. Fill the molds with the filling about two-thirds full and close, sealing the edges well.
17. Make a small cross-shaped incision on the surface of the pastries and bake for about 30 minutes.
18. Let cool and dust with confectioners’ sugar before serving.


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