Sfogliatelle Calde



500g of plain flour

1 tsp salt

25g of honey

175ml of water

150g of lard, or butter, softened plus extra for greasing

icing sugar, for dusting


450ml of milk

100g of sugar

1 pinch of salt

150g of semolina

500g of ricotta

1 egg

50g of candied peel, chopped

1/2 vanilla pod, seeds scraped out, or 1/2 tsp vanilla extract

1 pinch of ground cinnamon


Step 1:

To make the pastry, place the flour and salt in a large mixing bowl.

Add the honey, then gradually mix in the water to create a stiff dough

Step 2:

Transfer to a clean work surface and knead the pastry for a few minutes until soft and pliable.

Wrap in cling film and rest in the fridge for 30 minutes

Step 3:

Split the dough into 4 pieces to make it easier to roll out.

Roll one piece of dough through a pasta machine as if making pasta – start by rolling at the widest setting, then folding in half and rolling again

Step 4:

Repeat twice more to create a smooth sheet, then start decreasing the width settings on the machine with each roll

Step 5:

When the sheet is very thin (approximately 1mm thick), lay it out on the work surface and spread over a thin layer of the softened lard or butter.

Carefully roll up the sheet, starting from one of the short edges to create a tight sausage shape

Step 6:

Repeat the process with the other pieces of dough, rolling each out to a thin sheet through the pasta machine and coating them with lard.

Roll each of these around the original pastry sausage, building up the layers to create one large cylinder and stretching it out gently with each layer.

Wrap tightly in cling film and chill for 1-2 hours to firm up

Step 7:

Meanwhile, make the filling by placing the milk, sugar and salt in a pan.

Bring up to the boil, then whisk in the semolina flour until thickened and smooth.

Transfer to a bowl to cool slightly, then beat in the remaining ingredients to create a smooth, thick cream.

Transfer to the fridge and chill until needed

Step 8:

Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4.

Line a baking tray with baking paper

Step 9:

Unwrap the pastry roll and use a sharp knife to cut it into 1cm thick slices.

Using your fingers, gently flatten and push out the disc from the centre to form a shell or cone shape – greasing your fingers with a little more softened lard or butter can help

Step 10:

Scoop a spoonful of the ricotta filling into this hollow and gently press the pastry edges together.

Repeat with the remaining pastry and filling, lining the filled pastries across the baking tray

Step 11:

Bake the pastries in the oven for about 25 minutes, or until golden brown and crisp.

Allow to cool, then dust with a little icing sugar to serve

Nutrition Information

(Per Serving, approximate):

Calories: 400 kcal | Protein: 10g | Carbohydrates: 50g | Sugars: 20g | Fat: 20g | Saturated Fat: 10g | Fiber: 2g | Sodium: 300mg

Frequently Asked Questions:

Can I use butter instead of lard for the pastry?

Yes, you can use either lard or butter for the pastry.

Both will provide a rich flavor and a flaky texture to the sfogliatelle.

Can I prepare the pastry dough in advance?

Yes, you can prepare the pastry dough in advance.

After wrapping it in cling film, you can store it in the refrigerator for up to 24 hours before rolling it out and assembling the sfogliatelle.

Is it necessary to use a pasta machine to roll out the dough?

While a pasta machine makes the process easier and helps achieve consistent thickness, you can roll out the dough using a rolling pin.

Aim to roll it as thinly as possible to achieve the desired flakiness.

Can I substitute the candied peel with other ingredients?

If you don’t have candied peel or prefer not to use it, you can omit it altogether or substitute it with finely chopped dried fruits such as apricots, raisins, or cranberries.

How should I store leftover sfogliatelle?

Store leftover sfogliatelle in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

Reheat them in the oven for a few minutes before serving to restore their crispiness.

They can be enjoyed for up to 2-3 days after baking.

Can I freeze sfogliatelle before baking?

Yes, you can freeze unbaked sfogliatelle for up to 1 month.

Simply wrap them tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil and place them in an airtight container before freezing.

When ready to bake, allow them to thaw in the refrigerator overnight before baking according to the recipe instructions.

Can I use pre-made pastry dough instead of making it from scratch?

While making the pastry dough from scratch is traditional and yields the best results, you can use pre-made puff pastry dough as a time-saving alternative.

Thaw the puff pastry according to the package instructions and proceed with assembling the sfogliatelle.

Can I use a different type of cheese for the filling?

While ricotta cheese is traditional for sfogliatelle, you can experiment with other soft cheeses such as mascarpone or cottage cheese.

Keep in mind that the texture and flavor may vary slightly from the traditional recipe.

Can I make smaller-sized sfogliatelle?

Yes, you can adjust the size of the sfogliatelle according to your preference.

Simply cut the pastry dough into smaller pieces before rolling and shaping them.

Adjust the baking time accordingly to ensure they are fully cooked.

What is the best way to serve sfogliatelle?

Sfogliatelle are best served warm, either as a delightful breakfast treat or as a dessert with a dusting of powdered sugar.

They pair wonderfully with a cup of espresso or a glass of dessert wine for a delightful Italian indulgence.

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