Soft castagnole with ricotta quick and easy recipe

Soft damselfish : castagnole are a dessert of Romagna origins from the Carnival period, they can be both simple and stuffed, in my recipe I used a part of ricotta to prepare the impasto in order to make it much softer, a small addition that does not change the flavor but makes these treats super soft. They can be covered with granulated sugar, with icing sugar, with both mixed or with cocoa powder. These are among the sweets that cannot be missing from Carnival recipes!

Ingredients for 8/10 people

  • 300 grams of flour 00
  • 140 gr of ricotta
  • 50 grams of sugar
  • 50 grams of milk
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3 teaspoons of Bread Angeli baking powder
  • 1 tablespoon of limoncello
  • 1 pinch of salt
  • peanut oil for frying
  • grated zest of one lemon


How to make soft castagnole

Put the ricotta and sugar in a bowl, turn to mix. Then add the eggs by beating them lightly with a fork or whisk.

Then add the grated rind of the lemon, the limoncello and a pinch of salt, turn everything and pour the flour and yeast into the bowl.

Mix everything with a spoon, the dough at this point will be all crumbled, add the milk little by little and knead again with the spoon. The dough will gradually acquire a slightly sticky consistency, pour it on the floured pastry board

and knead with your hands for a few moments until you get a smooth ball, add a little flour otherwise the damselfish will become too hard, cover with a kitchen cloth and let it rest for half an hour.

castagnole mixture

At this point, cut a piece of dough at a time and form cylinders of dough, cut them into pieces a little larger than the gnocchi,

Soft damselfish

flour your hands and form balls. Be careful because if they are too large in cooking they will be cooked outside but raw inside. The right size is like small chestnuts (hence the name). Place the castagnole on a lightly floured tray.

Fry a few at a time in plenty of hot oil. Pay attention to the temperature of the oil which must not be excessively hot, to understand the right temperature use a wooden toothpick, when, putting the tip in the oil it starts to sizzle, that will be the right time to fry the damselfish; try to regulate the fire so as to leave the oil temperature constant.

How to fry Castagnole

Fried castagnole

For frying I found a simple trick: to give a uniform cooking and color, put a few damselfish in the saucepan and slowly turn the center of the saucepan with a spoon (as if to turn the sugar in the coffee) a vortex will be created; the castagnole will turn in every direction and cooking will be uniform.

castagnole for Carnival buffet

As soon as the color is deep golden (no further) drain the castagnole with a slotted spoon, place them on a plate covered with absorbent paper. Do not let them cool too much and add the granulated sugar (which otherwise will not stick to the castagnole).

You can use icing sugar which instead adheres more easily even on slightly colder damselfish. And your soft castagnole with ricotta is ready. Enjoy your meal and have a good Carnival!

WINE PAIRING: Val d'Arbia Vin santo Doc, Sannio Moscato Doc

For the wine pairing I consulted the

Soft damselfish

Enjoy your meal!


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