Christmas cookies "viscotta di Natali"
Product included in the national list of traditional agri-food products (PAT)
Type PAT : Fresh pasta and products from the bakery, biscuits, pastry and confectionery
Technical data sheet of the traditional agri-food product (PAT)
Area of production: Municipality of Barrafranca.
Brief description of the product: It is a biscuit with a pleasant taste and crumbly consistency, it has a sinuous shape resembling the letter "S", with slightly frayed ends.
Description of the processing, conservation and maturing methods: The ingredients of the biscuit are: soft wheat flour (once called Majorcan flour), lard, sugar, mother yeast and aniseed, they are all amalgamated. The dough is then processed to shape each individual biscuit. Then follows the leavening, lasting 24 hours and baking in the oven. The biscuits can be stored at room temperature and consumed even after two weeks.
Specific materials and equipment used for preparation and conditioning: Various utensils and containers used in the kitchen. Only to mix the ingredients the bakeries use the mixer and the refiner. Traditional wood oven or mechanical oven.
Description of the processing, storage and maturing rooms: Rooms usually used for family cooking or, in the case of bakeries, as an artisan workshop.
Elements proving that the methodologies have been practiced in a homogeneous way and according to traditional rules for a period of not less than 25 years: The custom of preparing the "viscotta di Natali" certainly dates back to a very remote period and any person of advanced age has childhood memories linked to the preparation of these sweets that were repeated every year in all families. The preparation methods always remain the traditional ones and this is certainly due to the particular shape of the biscuit which requires an inevitably manual processing and finishing on each individual biscuit and which has not allowed the introduction of more modern equipment. The "viscotta di Natali", originally intended for consumption only during the Christmas period, are currently produced and offered for sale by local bakeries throughout the year, with a large consumption by the population.
Source Pat Cards: Sicily Region
Card insertion: Ignazio Caloggero
Information contributions: Web, Region of Sicily
Note: The population of the cards of the Heritage database proceeds in incremental phases: cataloging, georeferencing, insertion of information and images. The cultural property in question has been cataloged, and the first information has been entered. In order to enrich the information content, further contributions are welcome, if you wish you can contribute through our area "Your Contributions"