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Ciambelle di quaresima
Ciambelle di quaresima (Taralli made for Lent, using yeast, flavored with aniseed seeds and white wine; boiled and baked)
Originated from: Italy
Occasion: Lent (during the 40 days before Easter Sunday)
Contributed by: Taken from "Il Piccolo Talismano Della Felicita" by Ada Boni (1929)

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500 grams (about 1 pound) of flour
3 tablespoons oil
2 tablespoons sugar
1 tablespoon aniseed seeds
Half a glass (3 ounces) of white wine
20 grams (about 2/3 of an ounce) Brewer's yeast dissolved in 9 teaspoons of lukewarm water
a pinch of salt

A large pot of water to boil taralli in

Original Italian text
Farina, grammi 500
Olio, tre cucchiai
Zucchero, due cucchiai
Cucchiaiata di semi d'anaci
Vino bianco, mezzo bicchiere
Lievitto di birra, grammi 20 (sciolto in un bicchhiere scarso d'acqua appena tiepido, 9 cucchini)
una presina di sale


Work the ingredients into a malleable soft dough.

Shape the dough into a ball and let it rest in a warm place for about an hour.

Knead the dough and then shape into a sausage, flattening it a bit.

Cut into four parts.

Process each part separately, taking a small chunk of dough, and rolling it into a log of about 15 cm to 20 cm (about 7 to 8 inches) long.

Shape each log into a donut. [Italian text: Prendete un pezzo alla volta, rotolatelo sulla tavola con le mani, in modo dei pezzi lunghi dai 15 ai 20 centimetri che piegherete a ciambella, piiando sul punto d'unione affinche non abbiano poi ad aprirsi.]

Bring a large pot of water to boil.

As soon as the water boils, reduce the heat to a minimum so that the boiling remains imperceptible.

Place a couple of ciambelle in the boiling water and remove with a slotted spoon as soon as they rise to the surface (only takes a few seconds).

Place the boiled ciambelle on a towel.

When all the ciambelle have been boiled, place them on a greased cookie sheet and bake for about a quarter of an hour, until they are a dark golden color.


The recipe in this entry was taken from "Il Piccolo Talismano Della Felicita" by Ada Boni (1929).... Notes from Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: "Il talismano della felicit?" (The Talisman of Happiness in English), written by magazine editor Ada Boni and published by Italian publishing house Editore Colombo, is a well-known Italian cookbook originally published in 1929. It is believed to be the first Italian cookbook specifically targeted to housewives, and along with the work of Pellegrino Artusi and Editoriale Domus' Il cucchiaio d'argento is considered one of the defining recipe and cooking-advice collections in Italian cuisine. The standard edition is 1054 pages long and was last reissued in 1999; it was also available in an abridged version known as Il piccolo Talismano from the same publisher. An extremely abridged translation, translated by Matilde La Rosa, who also added some "American-style" Italian recipes, with an introduction and glossary by Romance linguist Mario Pei, was published in 1950 as The Talisman Italian Cookbook: Italy's Bestselling Cookbook Adapted for American Kitchens (Crown/Random House, 1950). La Rosa and Pei decided to leave out recipes that were not of Italian origin for the American edition, and also added a few Italian-American recipes that were felt at the time to be necessary in an Italian cookbook. The La Rosa translation is now out of print.... Photo: Mary Melfi.

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