Scarcelle, an Easter Treat from Puglia


Not quite a bun or a cake but softer than a biscuit, the Scarcella is the traditional Easter treat,lovingly prepared and usully given to children, long before the advent of chocolate easter eggs. The original version was almost certainly round, with a central hard boiled egg, but now Scarcelle are found in all shapes – bunnies,flowers,baskets,limited only by the makers imagination. There are glazed and unglazed versions, but the glaze helps decorations such as hundreds and thousands or sugar sprinkles stick!

You will need:

500 g flour
160g granulated sugar
10g baking powder
2 eggs
zest of one lemon and one orange
100ml olive oil
100ml warmed milk

1 egg white
100 gms icing sugar
2 or 3 yeaspoons of lemon juice

For the decoration
hardboiled eggs one per scarcella
hundreds and thousands
chocolate eggs/sugar flowers – anything else you can think of – go crazy!

To make the dough – form a heap of the flour and other dry ingrdients, and make a well in the middle. Into this add the beaten eggs and oil and work into a dough with your hands, adding warmed milk as necessary to make a smooth, firm yet elastic dough.

Form some of the dough into long strips which can be plaited if desired, these will make the cage to hold the hard boiled egg. Roll out the remaing dough and cut or form into the desired shape.Place a boiled egg on the dough, and hold in place with the strips, making sure the ends are well attached to the base.

Bake at around 180 degrees for 20 minutes

When cool brush with glaze, if desired and decorate with hundreds and thousands etc.

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