1 ¼ cups Italian organic 00 soft wheat flour, measured then sifted
½ teaspoon baking powder
Pinch of salt
Grated peel of 1 orange
Grated peel of 1 lemon
1/3 cup butter, softened
½ cup sugar
2 tablespoons anise liqueur or rum
4 large eggs
2- 2 ½ cups sunflower oil, for frying
1 cup honey
2 tablespoons of powdered (confectioners) sugar
1/4-1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
3 tablespoons of multi-colored confetti balls or sprinkles
A few white bean-shaped confetti sized cinnamon-flavor candies (optional)
1 teaspoon of silver sugar pearls
1/3 cup candied fruit, of your choice (cherries, orange peel, citron)
In a large bowl, mix together the organic flour, baking powder, salt and grated citrus peel, then add the sugar, butter and liqueur. Mix with a wooden spoon until it resembles fine sand.
Make a well in the center, add the eggs and once encorporated into a dough, knead with your hands until the mixture is smooth and homogeneous. Let the dough rest for about 30 minutes wrapped in plastic wrap.
After the rest time, cut or break the dough into pieces 1/2-3/4 cup each.
Roll out each piece with your hands on the work surface to make a long sausage-shape, about 1/4-1/2 inch thick. A tip: make sure they are no wider, otherwise the struffoli will be too large—they will get bigger during frying, due to the baking powder. Slice the sausage using a small knife into many small pieces each about 1/2-1/3 inches in size.
Heat the oil until hot enough for frying, about 350F degrees. As soon as they are golden, remove from pan with slotted spoon, drain, and place them on sheets of absorbent paper.
How to finish and decorate the struffoli:
In a large pot, Dutch oven, or saucepan combine the honey and powdered sugar then over a very low heat, stirring with a wooden spoon, melt together. Remove from the heat, stir in vanilla extract, and add the struffoli as well as most of the confetti balls and pearls, leaving only a few aside to decorate the final dish. Mix well, so that the honey syrup can coat each dough ball, arrange the dessert in a large serving dish, add the candied fruit and rest of the confetti to decorate and happy holidays to all.
The classic Neapolitan Christmas treat: honey balls! Balls of crisp fried dough tossed with a honey-caramel sauce and scattered with brightly colored tiny candies.
Enjoy to Viviana Marrocoli!
Viviana was born in Naples and grew up among her family flavors and her grandmother’s cooking.
She attended the Gambero Rosso course in Naples, where she was able to learn from great masters such as Michele Leo, Vincenzo Bacioterracino and chef Francesco Sposito. After various experiences abroad she returned to Italy to work first in the restaurant kitchens of Lorenzo Cuomo at Re Maurì and Viviana Varese at Alice, the at the end of 2018 in the restaurant kitchen of chef Igles Corelli.
In 2020 she returned to her home town of Naples and together with her friend the businessman Pietro Micillo started a new culinary journey made of memories, tradition, and a lot of passion: the Taverna La Riggiola.