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Cookies without Nuts
Scroccafusi (Baked lemon-flavored dough balls, dusted with icing sugar)
Originated from: Marche
Occasion: Carnival festivities
Contributed by: Anna-Maria Benvenuto

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For cookies
1/2 kilo (about 1 pound) flour
250 grams (about about 8 3/4 ounces) sugar
80 grams (about 2 2/3 ounces) lard
4 eggs
Zest of 1 lemon
1 tablespoon vegetable oil
a pinch of salt

20 grams (about 2/3 of an ounce) of lard for greasing baking pan
For decoration
Icing sugar


Make the dough using the lard, eggs, sugar and 80 grams of lard. the finely grated zest of 1 lemon, one tablespoon of oil and a pinch of salt.

Form the dough into a ball. Place in a container, cover and let it rest for two hours in a cool place.

After the dough has rested form a long log.

Cut small pieces of dough and make tiny balls about a centimeter and half.

Place the balls on a well-greased baking pan and bake in a preheated moderate oven until golden -- about 10 minutes.


Dust with icing sugar before serving.


Mrs. Anna-Maria Benvenuto has collected hundreds of recipes from relatives, friends, and neighbors over the years. She recorded the recipes in Italian in numerous notebooks, often naming the recipe after the person who gave it to her. Mrs. Anna-Maria Benvenuto also copied recipes from Italian cookbooks, magazines and newspapers. The recipe in this entry was found in an Italian cookbook published in the early 1970s. Being an avid baker Mrs. Benvenuto tried out many of the recipes herself. However, because of her enormous talent and expertise, she did not feel the need to write detailed instructions as she knew how to make the recipes without them. However, when asked by this website's archivist (Mary Melfi) for details, she quickly volunteered the information. Nonetheless, as with most first generation Italian-Canadian handwritten recipes, it is understood that whoever attempts to duplicate them should have some knowledge of what they are doing.... P.S. Most traditional Carnival dough balls are deep fried, rather than baked. N.B. For a more traditional recipe for scroccafusi see Italy Revisited/"Fritters." Photo and notes: Mary Melfi.

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