These cream filled pastries are traditionally eaten on March 19th. They make a great dessert anytime of the year.
During one visit to Rome we were driving a group of women from our parish. They were in for a shock when my husband made a sudden U turn and pulled into a parking place. We all asked him what the problem was. "I saw a sign for St. Joseph's Bigné!" With that he hopped out of the van and ran into a bakery.
This is the type of devotion that these pastries bring forth. Don't be surprised if you have new followers after you serve this wonderful dessert.
St. Joseph's Day Pastries
- 1 1/4 cups water
- 5 Tbs butter
- 3/4 cup flour
- 4 eggs
- 1 tsp limoncello (lemon liquor)
- 1 Tbs vanilla
- confectioners sugar
- oil for baking sheet
- In a medium pot, bring the water to a boil over high heat.
- The second the water comes to a boil remove the pan from the heat and add all the flour at once.
- Stir immediately until smooth.
- Add the butter and return the pan to medium heat and keep stirring. The flour and water will form a ball. You will need to stir until the ball no longer sticks to the sides or bottom of the pan.
- Remove from the heat and allow to cool.
- Add eggs one at a time. Stir each egg completely into the pastry before adding the next.
- Stir in the limoncello and vanilla.
- Let the batter rest for at least 15 minutes.
- Using a soup spoon, place spoon size pieces of batter on a greased cookie sheet. Leave at least 2" between the drops of batter.
- Bake at 400F for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 375F. Bake for another 15-20 minutes, until golden brown. They will be approximately double in size.
- Turn the oven off and let the pastries "dry" in the oven. Don't remove until they are completely cool.
- Gently open and fill with pastry cream, chocolate pastry cream, or custard.
- Dust the tops with confectioner's sugar.
Bella Italian Food Recommends
Pastry Bag and Tip Set with Coupler
Instead of breaking open the pastries, you can fill them using a pastry bag. This set is great for the beginner.