Cucidati – Italian Fig Cookies

How was everyone’s New Year’s?

I hope you’ll indulge one more Christmas cookie recipe.  Cucidati is a Sicilian cookie that I’ve only had once or twice.  I’ve also seen these called Italian Fig Cookies or Buccellati.  This cookie isn’t one of our traditions but it’s definitely worthy of anyone’s traditions or any special occasion.  My friend Chris makes these every year for her family and she advised that the recipe is from Gourmet and can be found on Epicurius.com.

Cucidati or Italian Fig Cookies | Bakewell Junction

Cucidati or Italian Fig Cookies | Bakewell Junction

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Irish Soda Bread 2

Saint Patrick’s day has come and gone.  Spring has sprung early this year and my Crocus have bloomed already.

Back to the Irish Soda Bread…

I baked another version of Irish Soda Bread.  This version isn’t like the one I remember but it’s quite tasty.  My taste testers have classified it as delicious.  This one bakes up like a cake.  I got the recipe from an Irish co-worker and then modified it.

After mixing together the ingredients, the mixture looks like this.

Ready for the oven.

Hot out of the oven.

Irish Soda Bread

Yield:  2 loaves                Cook Time:  30 – 40 minutes

Ingredients

  • 3 cups sifted all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
  • 1 cups raisins, soaked in water for 15 to 20 minutes and drained well
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 large egg, well beaten

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.  Generously butter 2 9-inch round cake pans or pie pans.  Alternately, you can use cooking spray instead of butter.

Mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda together.  Add the butter, well beaten egg, sour cream, milk and raisins to the flour mixture.  Place in the pans.  It’s traditional to cut a cross in the top of the bread before baking but this version is too soft for that.

Bake for 30 – 40 minutes.  Test with a toothpick for doneness.  Cool in the pans for 15 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Enjoy!!!

Recipe adapted from a co-worker’s recipe.  The original recipe follows, if you’d like to try that version.

Irish Soda Bread – Original Recipe

Ingredients:

  • 4 cups all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 cup (1/2 stick) butter
  • 1 cups raisins, soaked in water for 15 to 20 minutes and drained well
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 large egg, well beaten
  • 2 teaspoons caraway seeds

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F.  Generously butter 1 9-inch round cake pan or pie pan.  Alternately, you can use cooking spray instead of butter.

Mix together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda together.  Add the butter, well beaten egg, sour cream, milk, raisins and caraway seeds to the flour mixture.  Place in the pans.  It’s traditional to cut a cross in the top of the bread before baking.

Bake for 40 minutes.  Test with a toothpick for doneness.  Cool in the pan for 15 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Irish Soda Bread 1

Saint Patrick’s day is in a few days and although I’m not Irish I have a penchant for Irish Soda Bread.  During my undergraduate years I worked at a sales rep company and while that information is unimportant, what is important is that I had a co-worker whose last name was Sullivan and his mother made tons of Irish Soda Bread and sent it to him.  Since he couldn’t eat it all, he brought most of them to us at work.  I’ve never had Irish Soda Bread that was as good or with the same texture.  It’s hard to explain because the bread was sweeter than any other recipe I’ve had and it wasn’t as dry or as brown.  It was sort of like a scone.  Unfortunately I never asked for the recipe and I’ve been looking for something similar since but I’ve never found it.

This recipe is quite tasty and moist; sort of like a quick bread.  I’ve modified the original recipe to my tastes.  I normally send a couple of loaves to a friend that I don’t get to see too often and she loves it.  She freezes it so she can have some whenever she likes.  I hope you enjoy this recipe too.

After stirring together the dry ingredients and cutting in the butter and mixing very thoroughly with your hands until it gets grainy, the mixture looks like this.

After mixing is competed.

Ready for the oven.

Hot out of the oven.  Ready, set, eat.

Irish Soda Bread

Yield:  2 or 3 loaves                Cook Time:  50 – 60 minutes

Ingredients

  • 5 cups sifted all-purpose unbleached flour
  • 2 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/4 pound (1 stick) butter
  • 1 1/4 cups raisins, soaked in water for 15 to 20 minutes and drained
  • 2 1/2 cups buttermilk or substitute 2 ½ tablespoons lemon juice to 2 ½ cups milk, stir and wait 10 to 15 minutes
  • 2 large eggs, slightly beaten

Directions:

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.  Generously butter 2 9 x 5 inch pans or 3 8 x 4 inch pans.  Alternatively you can use cooking spray.

Stir together the flour, sugar, baking powder, salt, and baking soda.  Cut in the butter with a pastry blender at first and then mix very thoroughly with your hands until it gets grainy.  Stir in raisins.

Add the buttermilk and egg to the flour mixture.  Stir until well moistened.  Pour mixture into 2 or 3 loaf pans.

Bake for to 50 – 60 minutes.  Test with a toothpick for doneness.  Cool in the pans for 3 to 5 minutes.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Enjoy!!!

Recipe adapted from www.foodnetwork.com, courtesy of Brother Rick Curry, The Secrets of Jesuit Breadmaking, HaperPerennial, 1995.