Food

Pizzelles

A friend asked me for a pizzelle recipe recently, so I went digging through my arsenal of recipes(30+ years worth), to find I actually had 6 recipes that I had made notes on like yummy, extra yummy, good fast and easy, etc. It’s been a while since I’ve made pizzelles so I decided to refresh my memory and skill before I passed on a recommendation. All pizzelle recipes are basically the same, eggs, flour, sugar, butter, baking soda, and flavoring, but I think there is a real significant improvement in the taste when 3 eggs are used instead of 2. Let’s start with a basic recipe that I like and we’ll go from there.

Ingredients:

3 eggs

3/4 C brown sugar

1/2 C butter, melted then cooled

2 tsp vanilla extract

1 3/4 C all purpose flour

2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp salt

Instructions:

Sift together the flour, baking powder and salt, set aside.

In a large mixing bowl using an electric hand mixer beat the eggs and sugar on low speed until thick and creamy. Using a spoon stir in melted butter and vanilla. Using the hand mixer on low speed add the flour mixture to the egg mixture and blend until smooth.

Lightly brush your pizzelle iron with melted butter or oil(I like butter), and make sure iron is really hot before you begin cooking pizzelles. Repeat for each batch you cook.

You can find many pizzelle irons from Rachael Ray Store:

You can drop a heaping teaspoon full to a tablespoon full of batter onto iron depending if you want thin crispy pizzelles or thicker more waffly pizzelles. Cooking time will also vary (from about 30 sec to 45 sec) based on your preference between dark brown and crispy and gloden brown and crunchy. Less time for less batter, more time for more batter, but color and crunch  is up to  you,  you will have to play with it a little to get it just the way you like it. Be careful not to open iron before steam stops rising out the sides of iron, not only are pizzelles not cooked but burns hurt for days(trust me on this one).  You will get 20-30 pizzelles  depending on amount of batter used.  Sprinkle with a light dusting of powdered sugar if you like and enjoy, or batter can be refrigerated for up to 3 days so you can mix ahead of time and make fresh when you want them. I had forgotten how much fun, easy and versatile pizzelles are – so let’s play with some variations! You can easily change the flavor and shape of pizzelles, first let’s change the shape. When pizzelles are just off the iron and hot they are very pliable for a few moments. You can form them into a classic ice cream cone shape(waffle cone), or roll them into a cannolli shape by wrapping them around a cylinder like a cannolli form or I’ve even used manicotti shells, or drape them over a custard cup or ramekin to create a pizzelle dessert dish(kids love when they can eat the plate), and form you can come up with in your kitchen is fair game. If you want fan shaped cookie crisps(great dessert decorations) simply cut pizzelles into 1/4’s again while hot, once they cool they’ll crack and break. Once cooled you can dip edges of any shape in melted toppings like chocolate, butterscotch, caramel, cherry, etc. and then cool and let harden, if you want sprinkles do it while toppings are still warm. Now let’s vary the flavors.

Sprinkle minced nuts(very finely minced) on top of batter after you spoon onto iron before you cook.

Sprinkle mini choc chips on batter before you cook, but sub granulated sugar for brown sugar.

Add 1 tsp anise to recipe, and sub white sugar for brown(my son’s favorite).

Add 3 Tbs cocoa powder and 3more Tbs sugar to recipe, and sub white sugar for brown(my daughter’s favorite)

Sub white sugar for brown and swap out the 2 tsp of vanilla extract with any of the following:

1 Tbs peach liqueur(made pizzelle bowls and filled with fresh poached peaches and whipped heavy cream)

1 1/2 tsp almond extract(made bowls and filled with tortone and topped with fresh raspberries)

2 tsp orange extract(made fresh fruit cup cones)

2 tsp lemon extract and zest of 1/3 lemon(made lemon mousse filled cannolli shaped pizzelles)

The pizzelle, an Italian cookie created in south central Italy takes it’s name from the Italian word pizze(means round and flat), and although the exact date of it’s birth is unclear, recipes show up as early as the early 12th century. This little waffle cookie has been a hit and tradition in many countries since it first hit the scene, and still is.  Originally  made for “special occasions”  like Christmas, weddings, etc., because the pizzelle iron had to be held over a blazing fire making one cookie at a time, but they were worth the effort. Now effortless, so keep them in mind, roll ’em up into fun shapes in the summer and stuff ’em with ice cream and fruit and add them to your holiday collection as a staple.

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