Zeppole – Italian Grandma Recipe


Italian Gandma Recipe

Zeppole are my favorite traditional Italian pastry. I guess you would call it a pastry but all I know is a hot Zeppola with powdered sugar on top and a coffee…. WOW.

My grandmother used to make these whenever we asked for them. Simple, especially when they are just randomly fixed with no definite shape they are so good. So for those of us not fortunate enough to have learned how to make these join Gina, the Italian Grandmother featured in this piece and learn in her adorable Broken English how to make traditional Zeppole.


Zeppole di San Giuseppe shown below will be featured in another post. They are traditionally consumed during the Festa di San Giuseppe (Saint Joseph’s Day) celebrated every March 19, when Zeppole are sold on many streets and sometimes presented as gifts.


Zeppole di San Giuseppe

Zeppola traditionally (plural: zeppole)  consist of a deep-fried dough ball of varying size. This doughnut or fritter is usually topped with powdered sugar, and may be filled with custard, jelly, cannoli-style pastry cream, or a butter-and-honey mixture. The consistency ranges from light and puffy, to bread- or pasta-like. At our house we like ’em plain. Without any filling…..  OMG they are so delicious.


Zeppole traditional

Zeppole also known as sfinge or Crispelli are typical of Italian cuisine, especially in Rome and Naples. They are also served in Sicily, Sardinia, on the island of Malta, and in Italian-Canadian and Italian-American communities in Canada and the United States. 

Some zeppole are filled with ricotta mixed with small pieces of chocolate, candied fruits and honey. 

Zeppole can also be savory, and consist of fried bread dough often filled with anchovy. In parts of Calabria, the anchovy or a sultana variety are consumed on New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day. Malta takes a different approach as anchovy zeppoli are traditionally consumed during the Lent fasting period. 

In the region of Frosinone in Southern Lazio the term “Sfinge” refers to a mixture of ricotta, sugar and eggs with the flour, which can then be flavored with vanilla, almond, etc. It is still fried in ball shapes served covered with confectioner’s sugar.

So we hope you enjoy this video starring Gina the Italian Grandma featured today.



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