Updated: Dec 16, 2022
This is a classic Italian Neapolitan dessert. It is made of up deep-fried dough balls, roughly the size of marbles, traditionally coated with honey, and usually shaped in a wreath. This is why it is served during Xmas season.
Shaping the dough into marble sized balls doesn't have to be perfect. It will look gorgeous at the end. This recipe is pretty simple and straightforward but the tricky part is to coat the dough balls with honey at the right time. All the important details are written down below.
You can decorate your Struffoli however you want. I love mine with cherries and sprinkles. Slivered almonds will be fantastic, or you can dust some ground pistachios too. It's Xmas, so why not? Anyway, here I wish you lovely people a Merry Xmas!
Unsalted Butter, 25g
Demerara Sugar, 25g + 15g
Unbleached All Purpose Flour, 250g
Baking Powder, 4g
Sea Salt, 7g
Cookie Spice Homemade, 1 TSP
Beaten Eggs, 100g
Grapeseed / Sunflower / Canola / Peanut Oil, For Frying
High Quality Pure Honey (I'm using clover), 185g
Fresh Lemon Zest, 1 Lemon
Sprinkles, For Garnishing
Glazed Cherries, For Garnishing
Slivered Almonds, For Garnishing (Optional)
Heavy Sauce Pot
Hand / Stand Mixer
Please visit my "How To Make Cookie Butter" page for the cookie spice recipe.
In a large bowl, cream butter until light and fluffy with a hand or stand mixer.
Followed by sugar. Cream until well combined.
In another large bowl, add flour, baking powder, salt and spices.
Mix to combine well.
Whip this flour mixture into the butter mixture, 1/3 portion at a time, until well combined.
Add in eggs and knead until it comes together into a dough.
Once it comes together into a dough, knead lightly inside the bowl to pick up all the nooks and crannies.
Form into a ball.
*If the mixture is too dry, add more beaten eggs, 1 TBSP at a time. If the mixture is too wet, add more flour, 1 TBSP at a time.*
The dough should be tacky, but not sticky.
Cover and set aside to rest for 30 mins.
In a dutch oven over medium heat, add about 3 inches of oil.
*You can check the temperature of the oil by inserting a wooden chopstick into the oil. If bubbles start forming around the chopstick, the oil is ready for frying.*
On a lightly floured surface, pinch a small dough and roll it into a long log with a small diameter of about 1/4 inch.
Slice into 1/4 inch pieces.
Roll each piece into small balls.
*Keep the rest of the dough covered to prevent from drying out.*
Gently drop the dough balls into the oil.
Use a spider to gently move the dough balls around. This is to prevent them from sticking to one another.
Do not crowd the dutch oven. Fry in small batches.
Fry until golden brown on all sides.
Remove the dough balls.
Set aside on a plate lined with kitchen paper to drain off excess oil.
Repeat the process for the remaining dough.
Set aside to cool down slightly.
In a sauce pot over medium heat, add honey and sugar.
Stir to combine well.
The mixture will bubble up and then subside.
At this point, immediately add lemon zest and the fried dough balls.
Using a spatula, mix to coat the dough balls well with the honey mixture.
Once the honey has almost evaporated but is still fluid, remove the mixture onto a tray and set aside to cool down slightly for about 3 mins.
Transfer onto a serving plate and use a spatula to shape it into a wreath shape. It should be sticky enuff to hold its shape.
*You have to move quickly or the honey will harden and make it impossible to shape.*
Scatter sprinkles and glazed cherries over the top. You can add slivered almonds too.
Slice and serve immediately.
*You can reheat the Struffoli at a preheated oven of 90 degree celsius or 195 fahrenheit for 8 to 10 mins or until the Struffoli is soft enuff to slice.*