St. Joseph’s Pastries or Zeppole di San Giusepper are traditional cream filled pastries from Campagna region.
For the dough:
285mlwaterapprox 1 ¼ cup minus 1 tbsp
200gramsflourapprox 1 ⅔ cup
For Pasty Cream:
2 ⅔cupwhole milk
½cupcorn starchapprox 60 grams
Candied Cherriesor Compote Cherries
Large Star Tip
Canvas Pastry Bag
Beat egg yolks with sugar. Add corn starch, vanilla and ½ cup milk. Beat everything well until you get a smooth and even lump free batter .
Heat remaining milk on a stove-top without boiling it.Turn the heat on low and slowly start pouring in egg yolk batter.
Whisk virgoruously to prevent formation of lumps and cream sticking to the bottom of the pot. Continue whisking until the cream starts to become pretty thick and turns into custard.
Be careful not to overcook it otherwise you’ll get a sweet omelet. Once you see consistency of the cream is thick enough add butter, whisk until it's completely incorporated.
Transfer the pastry cream in a large bowl, cover with a plastic wrap making it touch the cream. Let cool completely.
In a medium stovetop pot combine water, butter and salt. Bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to low and add all flour at once. Using a wooden spoon mix energetically until the dough comes together in a smooth ball.Continue mixing and cooking on low heat for a few minutes.
Transfer the dough into a mixer bowl.Using a dough hook beat it for about a few minutes to let the dough cool.Once the dough is cool start beating in the eggs one at a time. Add the next egg ONLY once the previous one has been completely incorporated.TIP: Add all eggs one by one except the last one. Beat the last egg with a fork and add in small portions until you reach the perfect consistency of the dough.
Transfer the dough to a pastry bag with a large star-shaped tip and start piping zeppole. There's a slight difference how to do so depending if you're going to deep fry or bake them in the oven.
Now you have 2 options
Preheat oven to 375F/ 190C
Line baking sheet with parchment paper. Pipe the dough into 3 inch in diameter circles with about an inch and a half hole in the middle.Make sure to leave enough space between the pastries as they’ll double in size in the oven.
Bake in preheated to 375F oven for 25-30 minutes until lightly brown. Don’t open the oven during the first 25 minutes. Past 25 minutes open the oven door for a few inches and let zeppole bake for another 5-10 minutes this way.IMPORTANT NOTE: depending on the oven you use it might take a little longer for zeppole to cook through, especially if you're using a static oven. Last time I baked zeppole in a static oven it took them 35 minutes to brown lightly + 10 more minutes with the oven door slightly oven. I also had to dial up the temperature a couple of degrees.
Preheat vegetable oil suitable for frying to 375F in a deep sautee pan.
Cut out 3 inch squares of parchment paper or aluminum foil, brush one side of the square with vegetable oil. Pipe the dough on each square forming a circle.
Deep squares in hot oil a few at a time. The paper will separate from the fritters in the hot oil.
You can remove it using small tongs. Fry zeppole until lightly brown. Discard on paper towel to absorb excess oil.
Fill pastries with cream
Let pastries cool. Cut each in half. Fill a pastry bag with pastry cream.
Pipe pastry cream on the bottom half, cover with top and pipe another star or swirl of a pastry cream on the top.
Decorate with cherries.Dust with confectioners sugar.
Decorate with cherry. You can use simple compote cherries or candied cherries.
St.Joseph's Pastry - Zeppole di San Giuseppe https://www.italianrecipebook.com/st-josephs-pastries-zeppole-di-san-giuseppe/