Music, dance and costumes are not the only protagonists of Carnival. At least not in Italy. Here we find another star, golden color, friable, rectangular and full of sugar. Can you guess what it is? We are talking about the Cenci, which is also known as “Bugie” in Liguria, “Frappe” in Rome, “Galani” in Veneto, and “cròstoli” in Friuli.
The origins of this sweet delicacy date back when the ancient Romans used to celebrate the Saturnalia, a festival very similar to the Carnival we know today. In that period, when the banquets and popular feasts were usual, the frictilia, sweet fried in pork fat, were very popular, distributed to the crowd in the streets of the city. The taste was so good that it has gone through centuries and is still a success today, a delicacy not to be missed in the Carnival celebrations.
That’s why we are sharing the recipe with you! It’s the number 595 of the “Science in the kitchen”, the bible of the cooks written by Pellegrino Artusi.
240 g of flour
20 g of butter
20 g of sugar
A pinch of salt and a spoon of vin santo liqueur
Once the ingredients of the Carnival Cenci have been mixed, it must result in a “rather firm” dough to be worked a lot with the hands and left to rest for a while.
The dough should then be rolled and divided into strips with a wheel.
In these strips, some incisions must also be applied so that they can be folded and twisted.
Cooking is done in oil or lard.
Once ready, the Carnival Cenci should be drained and when they are no longer hot, do not forget to sprinkle them with plenty of powdered sugar.
There is also a baked version, certainly not suggested by the Artusi, but which meets the needs of the more fitness ones.