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The recipe for Ciambella al Mosto, a typical dessert from Marino and the Castelli Romani

Here’s how to make one of the typical cakes of the town of Marino and the Castelli Romani

of Eliana Lucarini

With autumn came the time of the harvest and with it that of the dishes of yesteryear, which grandparents passed on and which, in some countries, still resist and make a good impression, such as the typical Donut au Must. A fragrant delicacy from this period and from the heritage of the town of Marino, famous for its “Wine and Grape Festival” and the “Donut and Must Festival”.

The traditional recipe for Donut au Must dates back to the 17th century and even to the time of Saint Francis, who, visiting one of his disciples, Jacopa de Settesoli in Marino, would have brought him the recipe for the preparation of this one. ci as a special dessert gift, which then became a typicality known throughout the territory and beyond. Its actual production dates back, still by tradition, to around the 17th century. When the harvest lasted a month or more, and nothing was thrown away, there was no waste and everything could be used: this is how this delicious dessert was made with the must.

The recipes for simple but rich dishes of infinite goodness and taste were thus born. Recipes that are part of this heritage that will never be forgotten, that of the habits and customs, of the territoriality and of the civilization itself of the different countries! In Marino, each family has its own recipe passed down from generation to generation, as often happens with recipes linked to tradition.

Recipe for about 6/8 must donuts

500 grams of flour (half cup or type 1 and half Manitoban)
250 ml strawberry grape or other grape must
75 grams of brown sugar
75 grams of extra virgin olive oil
125 grams of raisins
1 orange
Cinnamon to taste
Salt to taste
Brandy (to taste)
5 grams of dried yeast or 17.5 grams of fresh yeast

Prepare the strawberry must: wash the bunches of grapes and prepare everything for pressing, which will be done either through a sieve, or in a vegetable mill, or even in a centrifuge. Calculate that the must yield is about 80%-85% pureed grapes.

Once you have passed the grape strawberries, cook the juice obtained for about 30 minutes, removing the foam, and let cool.

Prepare the ascend: Arrange both types of flour on a pastry board or in a large bowl, leaving a small amount aside. In a separate bowl, pour the yeast into 40 ml of warm water, let it dissolve, add a teaspoon of sugar and as soon as the foam has formed, add a little flour, to form a soft dough.

Leave to rise, covering with a towel.

Dissolve the sugar and a pinch of salt and cinnamon in the warm, cooked wort.

Meanwhile, soak the raisins for about fifteen minutes, so that they soften well.

When the dough has risen, mix it with the must, gradually adding the reserved flour, orange juice and grated zest. Mix everything and add the Evo oil, and other flours if necessary. You can flavor with a little brandy to taste.

Work the mixture for a long time, trying to obtain an elastic and well-defined dough and add the well-dried raisins.

Keep kneading, always with your hands well greased with oil, (you can also mix by pouring the ingredients into an electric mixer). The dough should be soft and elastic enough.

Leave to rest for about 40 minutes then let rise again, either at room temperature or in the refrigerator in a food bag, for about ten hours or overnight.

After the long rise, take the dough and knead it for a few minutes.

Form large donuts, let them rise again, until they are well puffed and the dough has reached more volume.

Bake at 200° for about 15/20 minutes.

As soon as they come out of the oven, brush the donuts with a popsicle made of icing sugar and cold water.

There are several steps in the process, fear not! In the end it’s not too difficult. The unique flavor and incomparable fragrance of this donut will reward the time spent and the effort of preparation. Flavors of yesteryear, forgotten but, fortunately, not yet lost!

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