Struffoli! Strew-foal-e are some awesome little marble sized honey balls of delight! Oh yes, they’re sticky! But that’s part of the fun!
Struffoli are a Neapolitan Dessert typically found around Christmas & Easter! You normally find them in either the shape of a wreath or a cone like tree or well mound if they won’t stand up. LOL Either way, they’re going to be delicious! Normally I’d sprinkle them with festive happy little sprinkles (because well sprinkles just scream HAPPY!, but alas we had used all my sprinkles up on sugar cookies *sigh*) If you’re feeling froggy, you can also add lemon zest or candied orange peel in as well!
I like mine warm and gooey and they’re insanely delicious with your cup of Caffe! But I really don’t think there is a wrong way to eat them. If you’re worried about getting all sticky then go ahead & set out a cute package of toothpicks (but hey I like an excuse to eat with my hands, but don’t tell my kids)
Frying these babies can be a little tricky! Here’s the deal when frying the dough you HAVE TO KEEP IT AT the same temperature. I use my candy thermometer so I’m not guessing. Why you ask? WELL if your oil is too hot then it’s going to brown much too fast on the outside & not cook on the inside. Leaving you with what appears to be a burnt looking hush puppy & raw dough on the inside (I’m not going to say how I know this but trust me LOL). Not what we’re going for! & well if the oil is not hot enough then it’s going to be extremely greasy and just plain yuck. Start out just frying a few at a time until you get your groove.
I, of course, am insanely jealous of Mrs. Paula Deen’s deep fryer in her kitchen that I’m sure would fry all of these balls in no time flat. Ah, dare to dream! Have you seen that thing? So cool.
Okay, I’m back from dreamland…
Baci e’ Buone Feste!
What you’ll need:
4 large fresh eggs
3/4 cup sugar
2 1/2 cups flour – plus additional for rolling
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1 tsp Pure Vanilla Extract
48oz Vegetable Oil
Cinnamon Sugar – for Garnish
Sprinkles – Optional for Garnish
What to do:
Into your mixing bowl add the flour, baking powder & salt and mix to combine. Create a well in the bottom and add your eggs, sugar & vanilla extract and mix on low with your paddle attachment until well combined and a dough has formed. If dough is too sticky add a little flour. Allow your dough to rest for approx 10-15 mins.
Add the oil to deep sided pan and heat to 350 degrees. WHILE oil is heating. Roll out your dough onto a lightly floured surface into strands and then cut them into roughly 1″ pieces. With floured hands, roll each piece into a ball (about the size of a large marble). Continue until all dough is formed into balls.
When oil is at 350 degrees. Add a few balls at a time to oil (DO NOT CROWD PAN) Once the balls have risen to the top you’ll need to carefully turn them with a spoon or chopstick (whatever utensil works best for you) until they turn a nice golden color. With a skimmer transfer balls to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the extra oil. Continue until all balls have been fried. You need to monitor the oil to be sure it maintains a 350 degree temperature (I recommend a candy thermometer)
In a separate pan add your honey & heat over low heat until honey is melted. Add the cooked dough balls & coat well with honey. CAREFULLY Transfer coated honey balls to your serving tray. Arrange them in either a wreath shape or a cone shape (tree like). Generously sprinkle with Cinnamon Sugar or Sprinkles.