Diamond-patterned waffles whose ingredients are very simple: eggs, wheat flour, sugar, lemon and oil. They are usually offered two by two and filled with sweet stuffing.
The name? Pizzelle, ferratelle, neole, coperchiole or cancellate describe the same Abruzzese pastry – names change according to the area they are made.
You cannot make pizzelle without the tool and, needless to say, tools vary in shapes and patterns: a rectangular shape with diamond pattern is very popular, so is the round one with tiny hearts engraved on it. In the old days, the tool (“il ferro”) used to be heated up directly on fire; nowadays electrically-operated waffle makers are easier to use.
Tradition says that pizzelle tool was usually presented to the bride and it was customized with the family coat of arms.
Or, more likely, with the ancestors’ initials on one side, and the manufacturing year on the other side. Oldest tools date back in 1700.
Cooking procedure is simple, just put the tool on the flame, spread some oil on its surface, heat the surface and then pour a spoonful of the mixture.
It takes about 1 minute to cook, traditionally the time to say a prayer on one side, turn the tool and say another prayer.
But let’s hear it from Sara:
“I love to use my grandmother’s tool, the rectangular one with diamond-shape pattern, but I have some “modern” pizzelle makers with deeper grooves: pizzelle are softer and they look like French Gauffres or Belgian Waffles. They can be stuffed with custard, jam, hazelnut cream, or honey and nuts.
The recipe I am going to show is for Heart-shaped “Pizzelle”…
Appetibilis: Sara's Heart-shaped Pizzelle
6 spoonfuls of sugar
6 spoonfuls of extra virgin olive oil (evo)
1 and 1/2 spoonful of wheat all purpose flour (Italian 00)
1 lemon – grated zest
Use a recipe of your preference.
Here’s the link to a light and gluten free easy recipe from The Hairy Bikers
500 gr of strawberries
Chopped hazelnuts to taste
Waffle maker with irons
In a bowl, whisk eggs and sugar until you get a creamy and yellow mixture, add lemon zest, oil and flour.
Should the mixture be too liquid, add another spoonful of flour, [our grandmothers were adding the flour as last ingredients without having a specific dosage 😉
Place the open waffle maker on the stove fire, grease the iron with some oil and let it heat. Pour a couple of spoonfuls of the mixture on the iron, close the maker, wait for 30 seconds, turn it on the other side and let cook for another 30′, then open it and remove the waffle with a fork prong.
If you use an electrically-operated maker, grease it, pour the mixture and let cook for 1 minute, then open it and remove the waffle.
Spread some custard on one side the waffle, top it with sliced strawberries, put another waffle on top and dust with icing sugar and chopped hazelnuts.
Depending on how many different types of iron you have, you can unleash your fantasy about size, style and stuffing you prefer.
I’ve made a second batch on a rectangular iron; soft and delicious with chocolate-hazelnut custard.