Yet another sign that spring will soon be here! Although this sign is neither a change in temperature nor return migrating birds or early blooming flowers. To the joy of all those with a sweet tooth, this sign can be eaten.
These are zeppole in other parts of Italy, where they are usually of made of denser dough and are occasionally prepared savory too. In Rome however they are called bigné di San Giuseppe, light puffy wee clouds of.. sheer gluttony that begin to appear in most pastry shops a few weeks before today, March 19th, the Saint’s day.
Step 1: deep-fry some sugar, butter and egg. Step 2: fill to the gills with pastry cream (butter, sugar, and egg). Then, because they’re light on sugar and still too low on calories, cover with powdered sugar before serving.
(For a real recipe for bigné di San Giuseppe, our sincerest thanks to our contributor and friend Rita… of carbonara fame.)
When you eat your first one during those few weeks that they’re available, it is hard not to have a “Why aren’t you made year-round!?” moment. Given their nutritional value (!?), it’s a good thing they aren’t, actually. By the time San Giuseppe actually rolls around you’ll have eaten so many (a bigné binge?) that 48 weeks of bigné-abstinence is the absolute minimum.
But what a treat! “Un altro bigné con il cappuccino?” says the barista with a devilish smile. (“Another bigné with your cappuccino?”) Oh well, it’ll be easy to work them off soon… spring’s coming, right?
(Once again, grazie Rita for sharing your recipe for bigné di San Giuseppe!)