St Joseph zeppole (Zeppole di San Giuseppe in Italian) are the typical treats from Campania, the region around Naples, to celebrate Father's day. Nowadays, zeppole are common all over Italy, not only on March 19th. Here the authentic recipe to make them at home and make a daddy happy :)
300grgeneral purpose flour in Italy, would be '00' flour
100grfresh milk cream
1 vanilla bean
12-24candied black cherryAmarene Fabbri (1 or 2 each zeppola)
The execution of this recipe is split in two. The zeppole preparation and the pastry cream. Let's start preparing the choux pastry, adding the butter to the water in a pot and heating it.
When the butter has melted and is close to boiling temperature, add with a strainer all the flour and energetically mix it with a wooden spoon.
You will understand that it is ready to be removed from the heat when it is not sticky anymore, as in the video. Put the dough into a bowl, to cool down.
In the meanwhile, shake the 8 eggs in a bowl.
Slowly add the eggs to the dough. It takes a little bit to incorporate the eggs into the dough, be patient... eventually you will get a smooth cream. In the meanwhile, add a pinch or two of salt. What you will get at the end is a delicious choux pastry!
Preheat the convection oven at 200-210 °C. On a baking tray covered with baking paper, shape the zeppole, using the sac-à-poche. You should be able to shape 4 of them on a single tray, being about 8-10 cm in diameter.
Put the tray into the oven, close to its bottom. They must bake for about 25 minutes, plus 5 minutes with the oven slightly open to remove the humidity. At the end they have a nice bronze colour. Repeat until you have finished the choux pastry. You should obtain about 12-15 zeppole.
While the zeppole cool down, prepare the pastry cream. In a pot, add the milk, the fresh milk cream, the vanilla seeds extracted from the bean and the bean itself. Over gentle heat, bring it close to boiling temperature.
In the meanwhile, in a bowl, add the egg yolks with the sugar and whip them.
Add also the corn starch and whip the cream. Pay attention more than I did, it could be messy ;)
When the mix in the pot starts boiling, remove the vanilla bean and slowly pour the liquid into the bowl, gently whipping until you get your pastry cream. Pour it into a small bowl to cool down (use the outside temperature if it's cold, or a fridge).
When both the zeppole and the pastry cream are cool, use again the sac-à-poche to fill each zeppola with the pastry cream and top it with some more pastry cream.
Time to add the queen, i.e. the Amarena Fabbri on top! Spray with some icing sugar and... your authentic homemade zeppole are ready! Buon appetito :)
The fried version of this recipe has about twice the calories than this one!