Struffoli: Italian Christmas Tradition – Natale, la tradizione Napoletana

Struffoli: Italian Christmas Tradition

Struffoli: Italian Christmas Tradition

Struffoli is a Neapolitan dessert that is traditionally prepared at Christmastime.

It is made of tiny dough balls that have been deep-fried and soaked in honey.

They are served piled high on plates and serving trays. Some like to form them in the shape of Christmas trees or wreaths. Regardless of which style you form your struffoli, they are always festively covered with multi-colored candy sprinkles and colorful mixed candied fruits.

Struffoli are a traditional Italian holiday treat for those living in Italy as well as for those that live out of the country.  People who grew up with this symbol of Christmas seem to go out of their way every year to make sure there is a struffoli on the holiday table. Some buy it; some make it. In any event, the tradition is kept alive.

In Italy, Italian home cooks traditionally make large quantities of these tiny honey balls for friends and family. When one visits relatives during the holidays, a plate of struffoli often is brought along as a gift for the host as a form of spreading the holiday cheer and in keeping with the theme of Christmas as the season of giving.

The struffoli recipe shared here is one I have been making for years. I find that it is consistent and always delicious. The final shapes are always fun to see. Who says you can’t have a struffoli in the shape of a race car?