Typical Venetian Desserts: Fregolotta

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Written by EFW Staff

Fregolotta, the queen of the Venetian typical desserts

Fragrant and crumbly, Fregolotta is an exquisite typical Venetian dessert, which name derives from its crumbly consistency. In the Venetian dialect the it means “fregolosa”: this word comes from crumbs and this is the reason of the name “Fregolotta”, in fact it is a mix of crumbs of short crust pastry that break into thousands of crispy and tasty pieces.
Fregolotta is a simple dried tart made of short crust pastry with flour, sugar and fresh cream adding eggs, butter, almonds and aromas. It is a typical dessert of the Holiday periods and Epiphany, together with another typical dessert of Veneto: pinza.

The tradition of Treviso in the typical Venetian desserts

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Fregolotta is a typical and ancient dessert that was born in Treviso and makes part of the traditional products of Veneto. The roots of this desserts date back to the far ‘700 but the first written witness of its existence can be identified during the first years of the XX century. Giuseppe Maffoli, a famous expert, really keen on the Venetian cuisine, told that this recipe was prepared in 1924 by Zizzola bakery, founded by Angelo Zizzola and located in a small town in Castelfranco Veneto, in the province of Treviso. Together with the bakery, the Zizzolas was the owner of a “trattoria”. Here Evelina, Angelo’s sister baked this delicious dessert, which recipe was given by a friend, a cook of a noble family.

The luck of Fregolotta

Fregolotta ensured the success of the Zizzola bakery, thanks to a high demand of this dessert. To satisfy all their costumers, the owners realized a specific laboratory and in the recent years the Zizzolas founded a real factory for the Fregolotta’s production. Quickly, Fregolotta spread in other bakeries, confectioneries and restaurants and is, still today, a well-appreciated dessert, not only by the people of Treviso.

Fregolotta’s Recipe

dolci tipici veneti

300 gr of flour
200 gr of sugar
300 gr of almonds
3 yolks
200 gr of butter
A pinch of salt
Grated lemon zest.

Toast in the oven 300 gr of almonds, peeled and roughly grinded, for few minutes. Mix the flour, sugar, almonds, salt, lemon zest and the dices of butter. Blend and mix slowly the yolks, slightly beat. Fill a mould with the crumbly dough without pressing it and bake for 40 minutes at 170°. Once cooked, sprinkle with caster sugar.

A couple of advise from the ancient recipe?
Mix the yolks hard-boiled and crumbled rather than raw, the dessert will be drier and more crumbly; moreover you can substitute 200 gr of butter with half butter and half fresh cream.

Wine and typical Venetian desserts: the right pairing

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Fregolotta is usually eaten at the end of the meal or for a break together with a glass of sweet and liquorish wine. It is perfect with Moscato and Passito wines, but also with a Recioto of Valpolicella, one of the most famous red wines of Veneto, which cherish aromas perfectly enhance this dry dessert.
Another perfect matching is the Torcolato di Breganze Doc a real regional institution; it is a white wine that has wilted slowly till the sugary concentration in the grapes increased. Torcolato has intense perfumes of honey and raisin, its taste is sweet, velvety and pleasant. A perfect sweetness to drink with biscuits and dried desserts.

Recipe’s sources – Atlante dei Prodotti Tradizionali del Veneto

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EFW Staff