Crispy sugar fritters with ricotta sauce

(Serves 4-6)

No carnival is complete without a little something sweet! Traditionally, these frittelle line the walkways along Venice’s streets and pastry shops. As much as I love the simple sugar-coated fritters, I added a twist by filling them with chocolate. Enjoy this modern take on Venetian fritters.

Ingredients for fritters  

  • 1 package of store-bought puff pastry / pacco di pasta sfoglia confezionata
  • 1 cup Nutella / tazza di Nutella
  • ½ cup granulated sugar / tazza di zucchero granulato
  • 2 cups vegetable oil / tazze di olio vegetale

Ingredients for the ricotta sauce 

  • 450g package ricotta (remove from the fridge 30 minutes before using) / confezione di ricotta (togliere dal frigorifero 30 minuti prima dell’uso)
  • ¾ cup powdered sugar / di tazza di zucchero a velo
  • ½ tsp cinnamon / cucchiaino di cannella
  • 2 tbsp vanilla extract / cucchiai di estratto di vaniglia
  • ¼ cup sliced almonds to garnish / di tazza di mandorle a lamelle per guarnire
photo by Daniele Tomelleri

Preparation

Place the ricotta cheese, powdered sugar, cinnamon and vanilla in a bowl. Using a hand mixer, whip the ingredients until smooth. Cover the bowl and place in the fridge until you need to use it.

In a small Dutch oven, warm the vegetable oil to 360°F. The best way to ensure the oil is the correct temperature is to measure with a frying thermometer. Roll out the puff pastry on a floured surface to about ½ an inch thick. Then, cut out circles using a cookie cutter. Spread the Nutella in the centre and top off with another piece of dough. Pinch all the edges of the dough, making sure they are properly sealed. Place in the oil and cook until golden and then flip to cook the other side. (Do not crowd, as this will make the temperature drop). Remove from the cooking oil and place on a dish lined with paper towels. Immediately sprinkle with granulated sugar.Add dollops of ricotta cheese on a serving platter and place a fritter on each dollop. Garnish with sliced almonds.

Recipe by Vanessa Gianfrancesco

Photo by Daniele Tomelleri

Video by Vittoria Zorfini