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Bignè di San Giuseppe

Bignè di San Giuseppe photo credits Gambero Rosso Official Website

Appetising, filled with crème patissière, fried or baked: it is the delicious Bignè di San Giuseppe, the unmissable beignets on the Roman tables for Father's Day on 19 March.

The tradition of this delicious sweet goes back to the celebrations in honour of the saint, organized by the Confraternity of San Giuseppe dei Falegnami, during which the street vendors sold beignets and sweet fritters, fried at the moment in their cauldrons.

A curiosity: the feast is particularly loved by the Romans, who amicably call the saint "frittellaro", by the custom of eating fried beignets in his honour.

Here is the recipe suggested by Gambero Rosso to prepare the delicious sweet based on light and airy choux pastry, fresh crème patissière and a sprinkle of icing sugar:


For the choux pastry

125 ml. of water
50 g of butter
70 g flour 00
2 eggs
1/2 tablespoon of sugar
Salt to taste.

Combine the water, butter and a pinch of salt in a steel pan. Bring to a boil, remove the pan from the heat and pour the flour at once, stirring vigorously with a wooden spoon, incorporating it into the liquid. 
Put back on the heat and, continuing to stir, cook until the dough comes off the sides and bottom of the pan. Remove from the heat and let cool. Add the eggs to the dough, one at a time, stirring vigorously. In the end, it will have to be a solid and elastic dough. Bring abundant oil to 180 ° C. Using two wet spoons, let small spoonfuls of dough slip into the oil, a few at a time, so that they have space to swell and float. Drain them with a skimmer when they are of an intense gold colour, dry them repeatedly on paper towels and let them cool.

For the crème patissière

250 ml. of milk
60 g of sugar
2 egg yolks
40 g of flour
2 lemons peels

Boil the milk (less than half a glass) together with two lemons peels and a pinch of salt. Collect the egg yolks in a bowl and, with a wooden spoon, work them for a few minutes with the sugar and the sieved flour. 
Dilute the mixture with the rest of the cold milk and drizzle in the hot milk without stopping stirring. Pour the cream into the milk casserole and put it back on the heat. Adjust the flame to half height and, stirring without interruption, cook the cream for a few minutes, until it has thickened. When cooked, discard the lemon peels and pour the cream into a bowl to cool it. While cooling, stir occasionally so that the skin does not form on the surface. Fill the beignets with the crème patissière, helping yourself with a pastry bag. Cover with icing sugar and serve.


Photo credits: Gambero Rosso Official Website

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