To celebrate Father’s Day in sweet Italian style, here is the version of Zeppole di San Giuseppe by Mignon alle Mura, the café “with a view” inside Rome’s Termini Station, which opened a few months ago.
The recipe for this soft choux pastry cake, opened in half and filled with homemade custard, dusted with icing sugar, and featuring the inevitable sour cherry, is signed by pastry chef Alessandra Iasello and involves baking the zeppole in the oven.
Ingredients for 12 zeppole
For the choux pastry:
For the custard:
In a saucepan, bring the water to a boil together with the whole milk, sugar, salt, and butter. Add the sifted 00 flour in one go and mix until the dough comes away from the edges.
Then transfer the mixture to a planetary mixer and turn slowly, just enough time for the dough to cool a little. Add the eggs, one at a time, until the dough is smooth and homogeneous.
Put the mixture into a piping bag and form small doughnuts by placing them on a baking tray lined with baking paper. Bake in a preheated oven at 180° for about 16 minutes. Open the oven door slightly and let the puffs dry for about 4 minutes at 160°.
In the meantime, prepare the cream. Heat the whole milk in a saucepan with the vanilla pod. In a bowl, beat the egg yolks with the caster sugar, flour, and cornstarch until light and fluffy.
Pour in some of the hot milk to dilute it and prevent lumps from forming. Mix everything together, put back on the heat and cook slowly until the cream has thickened slightly
Put the cream into a large, shallow container and cover with cling film until completely cooled. Now all that remains is to assemble the zeppole and fill them with the custard. The final touch is the candied black cherry on top.