How to make olive oil and wine ciambelline

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08:01 CET+01:00
A tray of these delicious and fragrant biscuits, known as ciambelline, can easily help you while away the long evenings, especially if you have a good bottle of sweet wine or mug of herbal tea to dunk them in.

While the name might sound fancy, ciambelline just describes the biscuits' ring-shape and dieters can take some solace in the fact that they are made from heart-healthy wine and olive oil.

Recipe ( Makes about 35 biscuits )

450 grams (three cups) of Italian '00' or pastry flour, preferably organic and unbleached
150ml (1/2 cup) extra virgin olive oil
150ml (1/2 cup) white wine
2 tablespoons of anise seeds
1 tablespoon of fennel seeds
130 gr (1/2 cup) of light brown sugar
1 teaspoon of baking powder
A pinch of salt
1/2 cup of white regular sugar for coating


1) Preheat oven to 160 °C (340 ° F). Line a large baking tray with parchment paper.

2) Place all dry ingredients – except the white sugar – in a food processor bowl. Whack the processor up to high speed and slowly add the oil and wine. Blend until most of the mixture forms a soft ball of dough, which should take about two minutes.

3) Transfer the mixture to a lightly floured worktop and roll the dough into 1.5cm (1/2 inch) thick cylinders.

4) Cut each cylinder into 10cm (five inch) pieces and roll them in the white sugar to coat them, before pinching the ends of each cylinder together to form a ring.

5) Carefully arrange the rings on the lined baking tray. Bake them for 30-35 mins until they're just golden around the sides.

Hints and tips

If you don't have a food processor, you can give your arms a decent workout by mixing the dough in a large bowl by hand.

Once baked, you should leave the biscuits to cool on a wire rack.

As mentioned earlier, these biscuits are are the perfect accompaniment to a glass of sweet wine – vin santo, passito or marsala are three good Italian options. Buon appetito! 

This recipe was brought to The Local Italy courtesy of Letizia Mattiacci, author of A Kitchen With A View.

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She lives in the Umbrian mountains and runs the cooking school, Alla Madonna del Piatto. For more recipes visit her website 

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