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Cuchidahti (fig cookies) recipe


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A traditional Italian fig filled pastry. Enjoy for afternoon tea, elevenses or general snacking.

20 people made this

IngredientsMakes: 6 dozen

  • 315g plain flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 100g caster sugar
  • 225g unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 4 tablespoons milk
  • 400g chopped dried figs
  • 150g raisins
  • 1 large orange
  • 240g toasted walnuts, chopped
  • 350g honey
  • 125ml dark rum
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

MethodPrep:35min ›Cook:13min ›Ready in:48min

  1. To make Pastry: Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter, eggs, vanilla and milk. Stir into a smooth dough. Remove dough from bowl and shape into a circle. Cut into 4 equal pieces, wrap in cling film and chill.
  2. To make the Filling: Use the zest and juice of the orange and place in large bowl. Mix in figs, raisins and nuts. Process in food processor until evenly chopped. Stir in honey, rum and cinnamon and set aside.
  3. Preheat oven to 200 C / Gas 6. Grease baking trays.
  4. Remove pastry dough from refrigerator. Roll one piece of pastry dough at a time into an 20cm wide strip about 5mm thick. Cut lengthways in half, forming two long strips, each about 10cm wide. Lay strips on work surface. Brush top 2.5cm of each with cold water. About 1/3 of the way up from the bottom of the dough, place 1/4 of the filling in a 2.5cm wide strip, running from end to end. Fold the moistened edge of the dough over the filling and press to seal edges. Cut each strip into 2.5cm rectangles and place on baking trays. Repeat with remaining sections of pastry dough.
  5. Bake 13 to 16 minutes or until tops are golden. Let cool on baking sheets for 10 minutes. Transfer to wire racks.

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Reviews & ratingsAverage global rating:(25)

Reviews in English (19)

My husband really liked, me - not so much. I found it too "orangy", and you can taste rum only before baking; after it dissapears. It took longer to make it, and I found "assembling" instruction too complicated, so I decided simply to make rolls made of rectangular piece of pastry with filling. The pastry itself is delicious.-25 Oct 2016

by Elisa Nuccio Holt

I took an Italian cookie making class years ago, and the lady teaching it taught us to make the filling days ahead of the cookies. Then, place the filling (half full) into zip top baggies, flatten, and freeze/refrigerate. When you are ready to make the cookies, slice open the sides of the baggie, and cut strips of filling with a long straight knife. It is then extremely easy to place the strips of filling on the rolled out dough that can be cut with a pizza cutter.-13 Dec 2008

by BELLE975

Very tasty. I was trying to replicate a family favorite with this recipe and although it wasn't the same I have to say I think it was better. The rum gave it a nice kick and my husband ate the whole batch in 2 days!!I tried various ways of "stuffing" the cookie and found doing it as a pinwheel was the best (looks pretty too!). Roll out a rectangle of dough, spread fig mix over entire rectangle, roll into a log, put in fridge for 30 min, slice into 1/4" cookies. Bake at 400 until golden brown.-19 May 2008


Cuccidati (Fig Cookies)

2 pounds figs
1 1/2 cup raisins
1 pound dates
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tablespoon cinnamon
1 cup nuts, chopped
4 ounces whiskey
brandy
1 oranges, skin and all

Dough
10 cups flour
2 teaspoons salt
2 cups sugar
5 teaspoons baking powder
2 cups vegetable shortening
3 sticks margarine
6 whole eggs, beaten
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
3/4 cup milk


Italian Fig Cookies

    1) In a saucepan, add all the ingredients for the filling except the nuts, simmer on very low heat for about 20 minutes, then remove from the heat and allow it to sit and cool for about an hour, meanwhile, let's work on the dough.

2) In the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment, cream together the butter, shortening and both kinds of sugar for a couple minutes, then add the vanilla, zests and egg and combine for another minute.

3) Add the flour, salt, cinnamon and cloves, while slowly adding the milk and mix everything until incorporated (don't panic, dough will be very sticky at this point) then dump the sticky dough on a floured surface and pull it into a disk (you might have to add more flour as you pull it together) wrap in plastic wrap and pop it in the freezer for an hour.

4) Once the dough is ready, add the fig mixture and nuts in a high power blender and puree until smooth (add a touch of orange juice if the mixture has thickened too much) add the mixture to a large resealable plastic wrap and set aside.

5) Divide the dough into 2 pieces, roll each piece on a floured surface nice and thin but not thin enough that it's see-through (about a 12x14 inch rectangle) cut out 4 4x12 inch strips, pipe out some of the filling in the center of each one, and fold starting from the left into thirds (please watch the video to see how I do this because it's hard to explain) cut them into 2 inch pieces, place them on a parchment paper baking sheet and pop them in the freezer for 10 minutes.

6) While in the freezer, preheat your oven to 350 degrees, then pop the cookies in (lower and middle rack) and bake for about 15 to 20 minutes or until the bottom edges are golden (don't overcook) allow them to cool completely (leave them on the baking sheet).

7) Make the glaze by whisking together the sugar and orange juice, while the glaze is wet, sprinkle the sprinkles on top so they stick. Allow the glaze to set then dig in!


Chocolate Almond Biscotti

Ingredients:

• 5 ounces (150 grams) belgian chocolate, coarsely chopped
• 1 cup (215 grams) brown sugar
• 1 3/4 (250 grams) cups all-purpose flour
• 1/3 cup (30 grams) cocoa
• 3 tablespoon (8 grams) very strong espresso
• 1 teaspoon (5 grams) baking soda
• 1/3 teaspoon salt
• 3 large eggs
• 1 1/2 teaspoons (6 grams) pure vanilla extract
• 1 cup (150 grams) almonds (toasted and coarsely chopped)

1• Preheat oven to 350 degrees F (180 degrees C).
2• To toast almonds: spread on a baking sheet and bake for 15 minutes or until lightly browned. Remove from the oven and place nuts in a bowl. Cool and then chop coarsely. Set aside while you prepare the dough.
3• Reduce temperature of oven to 300 degree F (150 degrees C). Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
4• In a food processor, combine the chopped chocolate and brown sugar and process until the chocolate is very fine then set aside.
5• Sift or whisk together the flour, cocoa, espresso, baking soda and salt into a bowl then set aside.
6• In the bowl of your electric mixer combine the eggs and vanilla extract and beat to blend, about 30 seconds. On low speed mix in the chocolate/sugar and flour mixtures until a stiff dough forms, adding the almonds about half way through mixing.
7• On a floured surface divide the dough in half. Form each half into a log 12 inches (30 cm) long. Do this by rolling the dough back and forth into a cylinder shape with floured hands. Transfer the logs to the baking sheet, spacing them well apart (width-wise on the pan), and pat to even the shapes. Bake until almost firm to the touch, about 35 - 40 minutes (logs will spread during baking). Remove from the oven, place on wire rack, and let cool for 10 minutes.
8• Transfer the logs to a cutting board. Using a serrated knife cut the dough into slices 3/4 inch (2 cm) thick on the diagonal. Arrange the slices cut-side down on the baking sheet. Bake 15 minutes. Turn the slices over and bake until crisp and dry, about 15 minutes longer. Remove from oven and let cool on wire rack.

You can store in an airtight container for several weeks.


Cuccidati-Sicilian Fig Cookies

The cuccidati have a long history and the filling ingredients are for me, very representative of Sicily and of my dad. Some variations of the name in dialect: cucciddatu, vurciddatu, purciddatu or‘ucciddatu. The name buccellati derives from the medieval Latin “bucellatum”. These cookies are said to have antique origins of the Roman “panificatus” . We also enjoy Italian Lemon Knot Cookies-Taralli al Limone during the holidays!

The filling shows the Arab influences of Sicily and consists of sweet dried figs, raisins, candied citron, almonds, chopped hazelnuts, fresh lemon and orange zest, and a touch of spice. I’ve seen recipes that include clove and cinnamon. I like to sometimes add a dash of cinnamon. You can decide if you want to add a dash of cloves. The cuccidati take on many different shapes: wreaths and sometimes the “X” form. They are sometimes even shaped as animals. I don’t think I’ll be attempting any time soon the animal shaped version. As in the way the dialects change as you travel from town to town in Sicily, so do these cookies. There are the different dialect names for the cookies, different shapes they can be formed in, and the slight differences in the fillings.

There is the Sicilian background of these cookies and my family and then there is the Calabrian version and my mother-in-law. The other day my husband made a Skype call to his parents. It was almost Christmas Eve and Teresa was busy baking and it was already 10:30 at night. She finally came to the computer to say “ciao” and she had on her cute apron and was carrying a huge basket of “i sammartini”. That’s Calabrese for her biscotti di San Martine, which are almost the same as these cuccidati.

They are also made at Christmas time in Calabria as they are in Sicily. Except Teresa doesn’t reserve them just for the holidays. She makes them whenever she visits us and whenever we are there in Italy with her. Any time is a special occasion. Their recipe is almost the same as the Sicilian version. I called her the next day to have her run by the filling for me again. She told me it’s simply figs, raisins, almonds, some Moscato or Vin Santo, a little bit of chocolate chips and a dash of cinnamon. I have seen recipes with dates and honey. Teresa reminded me her recipe is made without dates and no need for any honey. She told me to add orange marmalade since I can’t find orange peels from wonderful oranges like she gets from Calabria.

My mother used to make them every Christmas for us when we were growing up. She came by on Christmas Eve to bake with my kids and my nieces. She gave me a hand with the cuccidati. The kids were awaiting their turn to get baking the sugar cookies. The cookies are not that hard to make. If you can have someone around to give you a hand, it will make the process go a little quicker. While the dough rests in the fridge, you can make the fig filling. Then when the cookies are filled and baked, it’s time to ice them. When you ice them, it’s better to have someone with you to help you with the sprinkles. The kids are always ready to sprinkle!


Recipe Summary

  • 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • 2 ½ teaspoons baking powder
  • ½ cup white sugar
  • 1 cup unsalted butter
  • 2 eggs
  • ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup milk
  • 2 cups chopped dried figs
  • 1 cup raisins
  • 1 large orange
  • 2 cups toasted walnuts, chopped
  • 1 cup honey
  • ½ cup dark rum
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

To make Pastry: Combine flour, sugar, baking powder and salt in a large mixing bowl. Add the butter, eggs, vanilla and milk. Stir into a smooth dough. Remove dough from bowl and shape into a circle. Cut into 4 equal pieces, wrap in plastic and chill.

To make the Filling: Use the zest and juice of the orange and place in large bowl. Mix in figs, raisins and nuts. Process in food processor until evenly chopped. Stir in honey, rum and cinnamon, and set aside.

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F (200 degrees C). Grease cookie sheets.

Remove dough from refrigerator. Roll one piece of dough at a time into an 8-inch wide strip about 1/4-inch thick. Cut lengthwise in half, forming two long strips, each about 4 inches wide. Lay strips on work surface. Brush top inch of each with cold water. About 1/3 of the way up from the bottom of the dough, place 1/4 of the filling in a 1-inch wide strip, running from end to end. Fold the moistened edge of the dough over the filling and press to seal edges. Cut each strip into 1-inch rectangles and place on cookie sheets. Repeat with remaining sections of dough.

Bake 13 to 16 minutes, or until tops are golden. Let cool on cookie sheets for 10 minutes. Transfer to wire racks.


There is no Christmas in Sicily without these buttery cookies filled with walnuts, figs, raisins, honey, rum, and cinnamon. Their fantastic aroma bring holiday spirit to your home!

Ingredients

6 Tbsp butter, cold & cubed

Directions

  • Place all of your dry ingredients in a food processor and pulse the cut-up butter until you get a coarse meal. Add the eggs, vanilla and water and continue to pulse until the dough forms into a ball.
  • Remove the dough from the food processor and knead it a bit on a floured surface. This is where you may need to sprinkle a little extra flour as you go. Form the dough into a ball, put in a bowl, cover and refrigerate.
  • Once your food processor is clean again add the almonds and figs. Pulse until roughly chopped.
  • Add in the apricot preserves and orange juice and mix until finely chopped. It will resemble a thick fig jam. Place in a bowl, wrap it up and refrigerate in order for the flavors to blend.
  • On a lightly floured surface, roll the dough in a rectangle shape, you can decide how big or small to make your fig cookies, it all depends on how big or small you make your rectangles(mine are about 10 inches long and 2-3 inches wide, but I experimented with many sizes and shapes, and encourage you to do the same!).
  • Scrape the filling onto a lightly floured surface and knead to shape into a log. Place the filling in the center of your rectangle, fold the side over and seal them on the other side of filling. Gently roll into a smooth log.
  • Wrap it in plastic and refrigerate until firm enough to slice. Continue rolling until all of your dough and filling is finished.
  • Preheat your oven to 350 degrees.
  • Cut cookie log into 1 inch bite size cookies. Repeat with all the dough. Place the cookies onto a parchment lined baking sheet. They don’t grow so you can put them pretty close together.
  • Bake for 14 mins or until just lightly golden. Cool completely.
  • For the icing, mix together the powdered sugar, vanilla, and enough milk to achieve the desired consistency. You’ll want the icing to be thick enough not to be runny, but still easily spreadable.
  • Ice the tops of the cookies and decorate with sprinkles, if desired.
  • Let the icing set completely before storing in an airtight container.

Recipe Video


Fig cookies (cucidati) recipe

The name means "little bracelets" and for many Italians, particularly Sicilians, it simply wouldn’t be Christmas without these semicircular fig-filled biscuits.

Makes 21 | Skill level Mid

500 g dried figs, stems removed, chopped
150 g dried pitted dates, chopped
200 g (1⅓ cups) raisins, chopped
1 tsp orange zest
1 tsp lemon zest
60 ml (¼ cup) orange juice
90 g (¼ cup) honey
100 g (1 cup) walnuts, toasted
80 g (½ cup) blanched almonds, toasted
1 tsp ground cinnamon
1 tsp ground nutmeg
525 g (3½ cups) plain flour
120 g (¾ cup) icing sugar
150 g cold unsalted butter, chopped
1 egg, plus extra 3 egg yolks
hundred and thousands, to decorate

Royal icing
1 egg white
240 g (1½ cups) icing sugar mixture

Cook's notes
Oven temperatures are for conventional if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.

Instructions

For ease, you can use store-bought royal icing.

Process figs, dates, raisins, orange and lemon zest, juice and honey in a food processor until finely chopped. Transfer to a bowl. Process nuts in food processor until finely chopped. Add to fruit mixture with cinnamon and nutmeg, and stir to combine.

Process flour, icing sugar and butter in a food processor until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add 1 egg, extra 2 egg yolks and 2 tbsp water, and pulse until mixture forms a dough. Shape into 7 discs, wrap each in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes, to rest.

Preheat oven to 180°C. Working with 1 disc at a time, roll out dough to a 21 cm x 10 cm rectangle. Trim edges. Place ½ cup of the fruit mixture in the centre of the pastry along longest edge. Fold over bottom edge to cover mixture, then roll up to form a log. Repeat with remaining pastry and fruit mixture.

Using a floured knife, cut each fruit-filled log into 3 x 7 cm-long pieces. Cut 4 x 5 mm-wide slits three quarters of the way through biscuits. Shape biscuits gently to fan out slits.

Place on 2 greased and lined oven trays. Brush with remaining lightly whisked egg yolk. Bake for 20 minutes or until light golden. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

To make icing, whisk egg white and icing sugar in a bowl until combined. Immediately drizzle biscuits with icing and scatter with hundreds and thousands, to decorate.

As seen in Feast Magazine, Issue 17, pg64.
By Angela Nahas
Photography by Alan Benson

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Cuccidati (Sicilian Fig Cookies)

Cuccidati (Sicilian Fig Cookies)

Ingredients

3 pounds total of dried figs and dates

a few squares of dark chocolate, if desired

A pinch of cloves, if desired

¾ cup marsala wine or liqueur

Instructions

  1. Pulse the nuts in a food processor until they are the consistency of coarse sand. Place in a large, heavy pot. Then grind the figs, dates, and raisins, adding the dried fruit a little at a time to avoid overtaxing the food processor. Add the dried fruits to the pot along with the chocolate, if using, cinnamon, water, orange juice, marsala or liqueur, and orange zest. Stir the mixture to incorporate, cover the pot, and allow it to steam for a few minutes on medium-low heat, stirring it regularly to prevent it from scorching.
  2. While the filling is steaming prepare the dough. Cream together the butter and sugar. Then add the eggs and vanilla. Sift together the flour, baking powder, and salt and add to the sugar-butter mixture. Mix until a soft, smooth dough forms. It will only take a few minutes. Flour your work surface and then divide the dough into quarters. Take one piece of dough and shape it into a long rope. Roll it out to a thickness of about ⅛ inch. Once the fig filling has cooled, place it along the long edge of the dough in heaping spoonfuls. Fold the edge of the dough around the filling and roll it up, pressing lightly as you go. With a sharp knife, cut the cookies into the size desired, typically a little over one inch. You can also form the cuccidati into rings, making little incisions to allow the filling to vent.
  3. Arrange the cookies on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper and bake at 375 until slightly golden. Continue this process with the remaining dough and filling. When the cookies have cooled ice the cuccidati and apply nonpareils, if desired. To make the frosting, combine the sugar, vanilla, and milk and mix using a wire whisk until the frosting is silky and about the consistency of a thin batter.
  4. Watch the step-by-step video below:

Marianna Gatto is the executive director and cofounder of the Italian American Museum of Los Angeles (IAMLA), a historian and author with more than a decade of experience in public history, non-profit leadership, museums, and education.


Instructions

Cut the figs into small cubes.

Place the fig pieces in a saucepan. Add the 2 tablespoons butter, 3 tablespoons sugar, 1 cup water, 1 cup walnuts, and 1 teaspoons cinnamon. Cover and cook for 20 minutes.

In another bowl, add 200g butter, 1 cup oil, 1 cup sugar, 2 tablespoons yogurt, 1 egg, 1 teaspoon cocoa powder, 10g vanilla sugar, 10 g baking powder. Use a wooden spoon to mix well.

Add the all-purpose flour, in small portions, mixing well after each addition.

Mix with a wooden spoon until the mixture becomes too thick, then use your hands to make sure the dough is smooth.

Roll the dough into a thick log, and divide into small portions.

Place a square of clingfilm on a clean work bench. Add a small portion of dough to the clingfilm and flatten slightly. Add a teaspoon of the fig filling to the center.

Use the clingfilm to close the ball dough and form a fig shape.

Put the cookies on a baking sheet with parchment paper. Bake for 35 minutes at 180°C/ 350°F.

Sprinkle it with powdered sugar.


Watch the video: Πετιμέζι σύκου από τη Μαίρη Παναγάκου (January 2022).