Crostoli, or “sweet knots”, are called by different names depending on the region of Italy: frappe, chiacchere and cenci are just a few. Although they’re eaten all over Italy, these pastry twists are especially popular in the north. They’re not too sweet and are delicious served with coffee after dinner.
- 240g cake flour
- 2 eggs
- 30ml butter
- zest of 1 lemon
- 80ml dry white wine or grappa
- a pinch of baking powder
- 10ml vanilla extract
- 40ml sugar
- oil, for deep-frying
- icing sugar, to dust
Combine all the ingredients for the dough in a bowl. Pour out on a lightly floured work surface and knead well for a few minutes. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Take a little of the dough and roll it out as thinly as possible. Cut with a fluted pastry wheel into long narrow strips and twist to resemble bows.
Heat the oil in a heavy-based pot and fry the crostoli a couple at a time, constantly turning them, until they are golden, about 2 minutes. Drain on paper towel and cool.
Place the crostoli in a bowl and sprinkle generously with sugar before serving.
If you don’t have a fluted pastry wheel you can use a knife.