The Scent of Carnival

It’s time to celebrate Carnival, or Carnevale as it is called in Italian. This feast is celebrated all over the country from north to south with various costumes, parades and regional traditions that include some delicious sweets like the fragrant castagnole.

These Carnival sweets are made throughout Italy, especially in the central-southern regions, this recipe has deep roots in the culture, appearing for the first time back in the eighteenth century. They are small pieces of fried dough that are soft and fragrant at the same time. They can be prepared in the simplest unfilled version or they can be filled with cream, ricotta or chocolate, and sprinkled with icing sugar, caster sugar or honey. Here is the traditional Umbrian recipe for Carnival castagnole to prepare at home.


Eggs: 6
Sugar: 6 tablespoons
Oil: 6 tablespoons
Grated lemon: Half
Grated orange: Half
Baking powder: 1 sachet
Mistrà: 150 g
Honey or icing sugar: for garnishing
Alchermes Liqueur : for garnishing


Mix all of the ingredients together, adding flour until the dough is not too thick. Shape the dough into large dumplings and fry the castagnole in plenty of hot oil. Drain and drizzle with honey or icing sugar and splash with Alchermes.

The Scent of Carnival

Cucine d'Italia consiglia