Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Sicilian Fig Cookies

Mary A. is a fantastic baker. She is an Italian mother of three beautiful daughters, the youngest of whom is almost finished with college, and they have an annual tradition of making the most delicious Italian cookies for the Christmas holiday. Below are some pictures of Mary, two of her daughters, and I, making Cuccidati, which are Sicilian fig-stuffed cookies. You roll the cold fig filling into a log and then roll the cookie dough over the filling. Then cut into bitsize pieces, and cook. Below is a recipe for the fig filling from Gale Gand. You can check out the rest of the recipe in her book or online:

8 ounces dried figs, chopped and soaked in 4 tablespoons brandy overnight
1 (8-ounce) jar honey
2 ounces raisins
2 ounces dates
2 ounces dried cherries
2 ounces citron or candied pineapple
1 cup walnut pieces, toasted
1 cup whole, blanched almonds, toasted
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
2 pinches ground clove
Rind of 1 lemon (remove any white pith)
Rind of 1 orange (remove any white pith)

In a food processor, combine the soaked figs, in 2 more tablespoons brandy, and all the remaining filling ingredients. Process until chopped and well combined. Keep chilled until ready to use.



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