Taralli, Ring-Shaped Crackers with Fennel Seeds
Taralli represent the rural essence of Puglia: very simple ingredients, ancient gestures, and traditional skills create one of the most appreciated snacks of Italy
Taralli represent the rural essence of Puglia: very simple ingredients—flour, olive oil, and white wine—, ancient gestures, and traditional skills create one of the most appreciated snacks of Italy. Born out of necessity during the famine of the XIV century, they used to be a sign of hospitality and friendship, usually served at the end of a meal along with a glass of wine.
Nowadays, a quick tour in the food section of a typical weekly outdoor market would show how varied the taralli world is now: there are not only the basic taralli with extra virgin olive oil and white wine, but also taralli enriched with fennel seeds, chilli pepper, broccoli rabe, olives, onion, turmeric, and sesame seeds.
Taralli go through a double cooking that makes them durable and friable: first, they are boiled in water, then baked in the oven until crisp and shiny. They will keep well for weeks if closed in a glass jar or an airtight container. Keep them in your pantry, and serve them as a simple, effortless aperitivo along with a glass of sparkling wine, or add them to a cheese board instead of crackers. They are Livia’s favourite mid-morning snack, an easy, portable tidbit to stash in your bag to nibble on while travelling.
This recipe was initially included in Cucina Povera, but eventually, we had to cut down the final number of recipes. So I’m so happy to be able to share it here, I am sure you will enjoy it.
📚 Cucina Povera is our sixth book, that celebrates the best of the Italian resourceful, thrifty and inventive cooking tradition. It shares the wholesome, comforting, and nostalgic recipes of cucina povera—the Italian peasant cooking—that is equal parts thrifty, nourishing, and delicious. You can pick your copy here. If you love it, leave it a review on Amazon (whether you purchased it there or not) which makes it easier for others to find our book. Thank you!
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