Italian Filled Cookies

In my last post I mentioned spending time with my mom baking cookies. This Italian filled cookie is our half Calabrian, one quarter Abruzzi and a quarter Roman rendition of the Sicilian cookie called a Cucidati. The traditional Cucidati is a fig filled cookie with three different nuts, pistachio's, almonds and walnuts, chopped dried and soaked figs, raisins and apricots, orange and lemon peel and many more amazing ingrediants. It's a wonderful cookie and well worth the time it takes to make. We altered it quite a bit and wouldn't even think of taking the Cucidati name for the original, so we just call it an Italian Filled Cookie. This more simplified version is my favorite though, with the bulk of the filling being apple butter, soaked raisins and chocolate pieces, infused with cinnamon, cloves and rum. The memories of Christmases past all rushed back to me with the first bite.
Buon Appetito and Happy Holiday Baking!
Ciao and Hugs,

Laurie's Filling
2 1/2 - 3 cups Apple Butter
3/4 cup semisweet chocolate, chopped
1/2 cup dark raisins soaked in rum or marsala then drained
1/2 cup walnuts, toasted and chopped
1/4 cup dark rum or marsala
1 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. grated orange zest

Mix ingredients together. Mixture should be thick so it doesn't seep out of the pastry dough when sealed.
Taste and adjust to your liking.

Pastry Recipe by Nick Malgieri
3 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
1 tsp. baking powder
12 Tbsp. butter (1 1/2 sticks), cold
2 eggs
2 to 3 Tbsp. milk
pinch salt

Combine the flour, sugar, and baking powder in a bowl and stir to mix. Rub in the butter, creating a powdery mixture. In a small bowl, beat the eggs and 2 T. of the milk and stir this into the flour mixture to form a dough. If the dough is too dry add the extra T. of milk. Place the dough onto a lightly floured surface and knead lightly a few times. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill while preparing the filling.

There are a few styles of preparation I use but I am going to give you the most simple procedure here.
Flour the work surface and the dough lightly. Divide the dough in 3, with rolling pin roll out each into a cylinder around 1/8 of an inch thick. Cut out discs with with orange juice sized glasses, egg wash inside edge. Fill with around a teaspoon or so of filling, fold over and crimp with a fork to seal.

Place around a 1/2 inch apart on parchment lined baking/cookie sheets.
Bake the filled cookies in a preheated 350˚oven for approximately 20 minutes, or until they are light golden in color. Cool on racks. Store in tins between layers of wax paper.

Sugar Glaze Cookie Topping
1/2 cup powdered sugar

Colored Sprinkles

Drizzle milk 1 tsp. at a time over powdered sugar whisking well. Glaze should be thin but not watery. Thick enough to brush on with a pastry brush but thin enough to be translucent. Sprinkle confetti on cookies immediately after glazing.

I'm sending these on over to Susan from Food Blogga
for her Season 2 "Eat Christmas Cookies" Event!

Be sure to check out all the wonderful cookies HERE and submit your favorite Christmas Cookie by the deadline!


Meg said...

These look amazing!

Proud Italian Cook said...

Wow Laurie, We are on the same wave length in cookie making! I'm about to embark on making cucidati's this weekend, I'm reeling in my BIL to help, because he's been begging me to make them for weeks.I just got all my figs today. I have to laugh because sitting on my table is Nick Malgieri's recipe! No kidding!! I'm sure I'll do a post on it.

Laurie said...

Thanks Meg.. Happy Holidays to you!

Marie, that is so funny! I can't wait to see your post. :) I have been on a Nick Malgieri recipe kick for a few years now. It seems whenever I keep a recipe that worked out perfectly it's by him! My husband and I were at Costco looking at books and I told him I wouldn't want a cook book from any of the authors on display at that particular time.. but I told him if he does want to get me a cookbook I would like a N.M. one. :) Do you know his out of print cook book goes for $100 plus!

The next recipe I will be posting is also a Nick Malgieri one. And it's not even a dessert! :)
Hugs to you Marie.. I would love baking with you.. how fun! :D

Maryann said...

My grandma made something like this called "fruit dreams". There's a recipe on my site.
Your cookies look sooo good! Brava!

Passionate About Baking said...

I LOVE this heart of spice Laurie...its singing to me!

The Blonde Duck said...

That's like the perfect cookie, sweet, savory and pink all at the same time!

duodishes said...

Such a pretty cookie. And we love how it's so festive on the outside.

CaptnRachel aka Tha Pizza Cutta said...

I remember getting these from the bakery but my mom and I never attempted them! Maybe one day I'll take the plunge. Thanks for sharing-Ciao! Mangia!

RecipeGirl said...

I love this authentic Italian stuff! These are so cute!

Lori Lynn said...

That is my kind of cookie. I love the filling, and the photos too pretty! So neat that you bake with your mom. Joyce and I are not bakers :)

Carmen said...

wonderful recipe

Vera said...

Laurie, cuccidati are my favorite cookies! I bake them every Christmas.
Your version looks lovely!

Megan said...

The presence of these cookies would grace any cookie platter. And it would be the first cookie I picked if it were on my cookie platter!!! They are beautiful!

glamah16 said...

Those llok really good. I love the fillings. Italiens have the best cookies IMO.

Susan from Food Blogga said...

Oh, my gosh! I adore these cookies. We always had them at Christmas time where I grew up. Thank you!

Elra said...

I never seen this before, it sounds so delicious.

Queen Guinevere said...

Pretty cookies! I made our cuccidati last week and already near half of them are gone! I like your combo of ingredients for the filling. Since I'm done with the cookie making, will save your recipe for later use, when things calm down around here!

Don't you just LOVE Nick M?!!! I have ALL of his books and use all of them, too! Never had anything of his fail and everything is always a "hit"! I use my own family recipe for the cuccidati filling and use Nick's pastry recipe, too!

Happy holidays!

Dee said...

Beautiful baked goodies! I didn't have much time to complete all of the holiday baking I wanted to. I may have to bake up a batch of these. Wonderful post! Thanks!

Eftychia said...

These cookies are delicious. I will try your recipe for sure. Thanks for sharing!