Pizzelle: Traditional cookies from the Abruzzo region

Each of the 20 regions of Italy has its own culinary specialties to offer. In addition to traditional sausage, cheese and other typical Italian foods and dishes such as pizza and pasta, there is also a wide range of desserts. Whether as a dessert to round off an Italian menu, as a quick treat for the palate in between or as an accompaniment to coffee and a nice chat: between our 20 recipes there is something for every taste and every situation! Here we present the so-called Pizzelle before:

Culinary delights of Abruzzo

Abruzzo is considered the northernmost region of southern Italy for its historical and cultural ties to Sicily and Naples. Geographically, the region is more central, east of Rome on the Adriatic coast. The landscape stretches from mountains in the west over hills to the sea in the east and is characterized by many national parks. Slightly separated from the rest of the country by the mountain range, a cuisine with many local specialties has developed in Abruzzo. There is still much to discover and learn about them. Here we focus on the sweet side of Abruzzo cuisine. To be more precise, a special type of biscuit: the Pizzelle.

Cute little pizzas? These are pizzas:

It is no coincidence that these waffle biscuits share the root of the word with the popular pizza: the pizzelles also have a flat and round shape. Just smaller and much flatter and crunchier than a traditional pizza crust, and just sweet instead of salty. This sweet taste gets an extra special touch thanks to the use of anise extract.

With their simple preparation, these light liquorice-toned cookies are said to have been baked for special celebrations as far back as ancient times. Still operating at this time with the help of specially made pizzelle waffle makers, often engraved with the family emblems, and passed down from generation to generation.

Today, you can buy pizzelle irons in electric form engraved with standard patterns somewhat reminiscent of snowflakes. Thanks to this special waffle iron, you can prepare many Pizzelles in a short time. Which is very convenient as the biscuits are still eaten on special occasions. On important holidays such as Christmas and Easter, but also at other family gatherings.

Whether you use a special pizzelle iron or any other waffle maker, in our recipe we explain how you can make this sweet treat from Abruzzo yourself!

The simple base for cookies is perfect for creating special variants. Not only the Italians can do it. In Northern Germany, for example, there are traditional Heligoland biscuits, also deliciously spicy with a gingerbread flavour! And of course the French are known for their sweets such as croissants or eclairs, but do you also know the calissons? Check out our recipe for a sweet treat with almonds and lemon flavor!

Looking for more Italian desserts? How about these here:

A Maritozzi on a black plate dusted with icing sugar.

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Several pizzas stacked on top of each other and broken into pieces lie from above on a striped linen cloth against a wooden background.

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Pizzelle – Italian cookies with a centuries-old tradition

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The Pizzelle are characterized by their thin dough, which is transformed into crunchy golden cookies with beautiful patterns in the waffle iron. And the traditional pastries from Abruzzo impress not only with their appearance: they are quick and easy to prepare and taste surprisingly with a hint of aniseed. Enjoy it, like in Italy:

preparation

Prepare the dough:

  1. For a nice fluffy batter, first beat the eggs together with the regular and vanilla sugar, aniseed extract and salt on high speed with a hand mixer until fluffy.

  2. Reduce the speed slightly and add the flour and baking powder. Stir everything until you get a smooth batter.

  3. Cut the butter into cubes and melt in the microwave or oven. Finally fold the melted butter into the batter.

Bake the pizza dough:

  1. Heat the waffle iron and wait until the baking surface is hot enough. Then place a tablespoon of the batter in the middle of the baking surfaces and bake the pizza cell for about 40 seconds. The finished waffle biscuits should be slightly golden from baking.

  2. Carefully lift the finished pizzelle off the waffle iron and place on a plate to cool. The cookies are still very soft when freshly baked, but should firm up and become crisp as they cool.

Serve the Pizzelle:

  1. To serve, stack the waffle biscuits on top of each other and sprinkle with powdered sugar. Combine everything with a fresh cup of Italian coffee and you can treat yourself to a little Italian getaway!