Dolci

Dolci

By
Katie & Giancarlo Caldesi
Contains
12 recipes
Published by
Hardie Grant Books
ISBN
9781784880040
Photographer
Helen Cathcart

What Rome lacks in indigenous desserts it makes up for in gelato, which has its own chapter in this book. However, creamy cool ricotta, the by-product of making mozzarella and pecorino, makes a regular appearance. Ancient Romans used honey to sweeten it to make desserts. In his work De Agricultura Cato the Censor, otherwise known as Cato the Elder, writes of a recipe for savillum, a sheep’s milk ricotta cheesecake with honey, egg and flour. It was centuries later when the use of ricotta sweetened with sugar and flavoured with cedro, or citron, came to Rome from Sicily with the Jews.

Biscuits are one of Rome’s sweet pleasures. Visit any patisserie and you will see a selection of biscuits ready to be packaged up in cellophane and ribbons, and taken as gifts when you are asked to lunch or dinner. Pretty cherry jam tarts decorated with crosses sit next to cinnamon biscotti, coconut kisses and dark pink biscotti di vino (red wine biscuits). Pan giallo, a fruit and nut cake, and mostaccioli, chocolate glazed biscuits, are spiced Christmas treats that have been made since famous Rennaissance chef Bartolomeo Scappi’s days in the 1500s. When nuts are used they are generally Lazio-grown hazelnuts or almonds from the south of Italy.

We have included tiramisu, which might of course make a few people groan with ‘Oh no, not again’, however a trip to Pompi, the so-called home of tiramisu in Rome, and the fact that so many of our friends in Rome make it regularly, awakened our imagination, so here we include one classic (child friendly without the alcohol) and two wickedly adult versions for those days when cautions are thrown to the wind.

Recipes in this Chapter

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