Today I bring you in Tuscany and precisely in Vernio, a tiny village in the province of Prato, where an ancient guarded recipe, the recipe of Zuccherini Vernio. These are simple anise cookies, which have a special gourmet: they are candied, or better sandblasted, with sugar to be covered with a kind of sweet and crunchy glaze. Candying is, Obviously, the only difficult part of this otherwise simple recipe: As always, when it comes to cooking caramel or, I recommend the use of a thermometer, to make sure you get to the required temperature and achieve the desired result. If you do not have a thermometer you can do “by eye”: when the bubbles in the solution of sugar and water become large via smaller and smaller, it's time for candy sugar. In the recipe also you find the video of the preparation of sugar Vernio, performed by the culinary association Di Fork in Fork, that preserves and passes on some recipes Prato Vernio like sugar and potato tortelli. The association holds cooking classes at a farm site, The House Bandite, and so I learned to prepare in the right way these cookies, in ancient times, They were prepared for special celebrations, such as weddings, and given away to guests as a sign of joy and sharing. Thanks to canditura, which creates around a crystal sugar cookie barrier, the Vernio Zuccherini are durable, although one leads to another. During my weekend in Prato (hence our full itinerary), in addition to learning how to do the Zuccherini, I also learned the RECIPE OF SWEET PEACHES of Prato and I immediately rebuilt home, then give it a glance. Have a good day.
Zuccherini OF VERNIO (Tuscan biscuits with anise)Print This
- 250 grams of flour 00
- 2 whole eggs
- 35 grams of sugar
- half teaspoon baking powder
- 30 grams of soft butter at room temperature
- a large pinch of salt
- a teaspoon of aniseed
- a tablespoon anise liqueur
- FOR CANDYING (doses for about 25 sugar):
- 200 grams of caster sugar
- 100 milliliters of natural mineral water
- 1 tablespoon anise liqueur
The night before, soak in cold water aniseed, to rehydrate and make them soft to chew. Do not make the mistake of using the dry anise seeds in the preparation of sugar Vernio, because they meet these tough seeds taste is not pleasant.
Put on the work surface in the sifted flour with baking powder, sugar, salt and anise seeds. Make a well in the center and break eggs, beat them with a fork, mix the flour gradually. When you have mixed all your eggs, add the softened butter and aniseed liqueur. Mix until obtaining a homogeneous mixture, soft and smooth. The dough should be soft and yielding, inelastic.
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees. Let the dough rest for 30 minutes sugary Vernio, wrapped in plastic wrap, at room temperature. After the interval of rest of the dough, formed many cords with a diameter of about one centimeter, cut and cut small donuts, how do you see in the video. I recommend, the hole of the donut needs to be broad otherwise rising during cooking will close completely.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper and lay the sugar Vernio, well spaced. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes. Remove from oven and let cool zuccherini.
For the candied, put sugar, water and anise liqueur in a large pan with high edges and, bring to a boil and, when the mixture has reached the temperature of 121 degrees (have a thermometer is ideal) or begin to see on the surface of small bubbles, pour the sugar Vernio. Mix with a spatula until the sugar will not become whitish and you will not crystallized around the sugar. If you were to double the dose of dough, remember to never more than candy sugar 20-25 Vernio together, because otherwise the sugar will be distributed properly and you risk breaking the cookies. Pour sugar on a baking sheet and let cool completely. You can save the sugar for about 10 days: hermetically closed in a tin or a jar will be retained perfectly and will last for a long time. Bon appétit!