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Whenever friends or relatives go to Rome, I ask them to bring home some special sweets that are only there, to be precise only in the Ghetto bakery, the Boccone kosher pastry shop, called “Ginetti”. These are huge cookies prepared with a very thick and coarse shortbread pastry. As well as the “Beridde pizza”, which despite its name is still simply a type of cookie, enriched with dried and candied fruit.
The bakery that produces these cookies is managed by five no-nonsense ladies, which carefully guard the recipes of their fabulous, one-of-a-kind sweets for generations, and keep them absolutely top secret!
After many attempts and accurate investigations (meaning: cookies eaten), I finally managed to prepare something quite similar to Boccione’s Beridde Pizza. I am so happy to share the recipe with those who, perhaps like me, have been looking for it for a long time, so that we can finally allow our friends to go to Rome without coming back with a load of cookies.
In this photo you can see one of the fearsome ladies of Boccione guarding her cookies, next to which you can admire another of the specialties for which the shop is known: the toasted pumpkin seeds, which are called “bruscolini”.
But let’s get back to the sweet Jewish pizza, or Beridde pizza: in this second photo you can see the original Boccione recipe, a cake divided into many slices, which appears to be burned to the point of not being edible, but it is absolutely delicious.
Enough talking, let’s move on to the recipe right away, and put ourselves to the test!
- 70 g of almond flour
- 220 g of 00 flour
- 80 g of sugar
- 100 g of seed oil (peanut or sunflower seed)
- 50-70 g of white wine
- raisins, previously soaked
- toasted pine nuts
- toasted almonds
- cubes of candied citron (or other candied fruit)
- Preheat the oven to the highest temperature you can reach.
- Grind the almonds to get a fine almond flour (mine was not fine enough, hence the surface of my cookies in the picture looks a bit rough) or buy it ready made, then add the flour and sugar.
- Add the oil to the flours (some say it should be lukewarm, but I do not think this makes a difference) and knead by hand, gradually adding the dried fruit and candied fruit.
- Adjust the consistency of the dough with the white wine; you want to obtain a moist but not too sticky shortbread pastry.
- Prepare a disposable baking pan (about 20×25 cm, a small lasagna size pan, to be clear) and press the dough inside it or, if you prefer, line a drip pan and spread the dough divided into two pressed rolls, as you would to prepare cantucci .
- Cook the shortbread in a very hot oven until it is well baked on the surface and the bottom, but soft inside. To achieve a result more similar to the original, you could complete the baking time with a few minutes on grill, allowing the surface of the dessert to be well-done.
Beridde pizza is good, nutritious, and suitable for vegans and those who cannot eat yeast. Try it and, particularly if you have tasted the original, tell me what you think!