Cartellate or “carteddate” are a typical Christmas cake of the Apulian tradition. Crumbly and crunchy, they are made with simple ingredients: to prepare them you need manual skills, but thanks to this recipe and some precautions the result will be truly delicious.
FOR 40 CARTELLADES
370 g of flour 00
60 ml of extra virgin olive oil
100 ml of white wine
8 g of baking powder
a clementine or a mandarin
3 g of salt
3 g of sugar
white wine for processing (about 30/50 ml)
honey or mulled wine
For the dough
In a pan, heat the extra virgin olive oil, add the chopped zest of a clementine and sauté to flavor. Once ready, remove the skins.
Arrange the flour on a pastry board, pour the slightly warmed oil in the center and start kneading. Rub the flour between your hands to better incorporate the oil, until you get a slightly sandy mixture. Make the fountain again and add the salt and sugar.
Dissolve the sachet of baking powder, stirring with a teaspoon, in 100 ml of white wine. Add the wine with the yeast to the flour, mix by adding more wine a little at a time, necessary to obtain a well-blended and very compact dough: it should not be mushy or sticky, but on the contrary dry and hard to work it easily in the machine.
Let the dough rest for about 30 minutes covered with a cloth or wrapped in cling film.
To make the cartellate
Obtain small pieces from the dough and pass them into the pasta machine, placing the rollers on notch number 1: repeat the operation until the dough is smooth and clear.
Pass the dough into the machine by placing the rollers on notch number 4, repeating the operation two more times and then work it with the rollers positioned on notch number 7 and then number 9. You must first knead well and then gradually roll out a very thin sheet.
With a notched wheel, make rectangles about 25 cm long and 4 cm wide. Slightly fold each rectangle on itself and pinch it about every 2 cm to join the edges; roll it into a spiral, pinching a few sides to keep it together.
It is important to pinch the dough well to seal it, otherwise the cartellate will open during cooking: to make the operation effective, wet your fingertips with water. Arrange the prepared cartellate on a tray lined with parchment paper and let it dry for about 5 hours before frying. Better still if they rest all night.
To fry them, bring plenty of frying oil to the right temperature (to be sure of the heat, dip a piece of puff pastry in hot oil, if it rises to the surface and sizzles, the oil is ready); dip some cartellate and cook taking care to turn them, to allow a homogeneous browning. Once ready, take them out of the oil and lay them on absorbent paper turning them upside down to remove the excess oil contained in the cartellate basins.
Heat abundant honey or mulled wine, dip the cartellate two or three at a time and let them soak evenly on both sides. Place them on a serving dish and decorate with chopped hazelnuts, walnuts or colored sugars.
Enjoy your meal!