Sweet Tuscany: Brigidini and Cialde

Sweet Tuscany: Brigidini and Cialde





The Brigidini from Lamporecchio (Lamporecchio is a tiny town in the Pistoia province, Tuscany) have quite a long story. The name (Brigidini is sort of a collective plural, the singular noun "Brigidino" is mostly unused) comes from Saint Brigid (in Italian: Brigida), because according to records the original Brigidini recipe was born in the Saint Brigid Sisters Convent in Pistoia. Brigidini: very simple, but... The Brigidini are proof of the fact that very simple ingredients can make a great product: sugar, flour, eggs and anise essential oil (anise seeds in the original recipe. Mind that anise has been very used in the Mediterranean area since the Middle Age to give flavour to recipes and liquors, from the Greek Ouzo to the Italian Sambuca or the Arak from Lebano, Israel and Syria). The Brigidini are basically very thin, very friable wafers, with a bright sunny yellow - colour. You can use them as a snack or as a light dessert: but try them with fresh cream and you could not do without them anymore! From Lamporecchio to Montecatini for the Cialde The Cialde di Montecatini (Montecatini Wafers) are the demonstration that... Italians do it better ;-) We are of course speaking about wafers: the Cialde recipe comes from Montecatini confectioners in the early XX Century. If you want, they are a sort of "evolution" of the Brigidini: two wafer discs with a sugar and almonds filling. Cialde and Brigidini in Florence! At Enoteca Alessi you can find the best Brigidini di Lamporecchio and Cialde di Montecatini. As they are dry pastries they are extremely easy to transport, and as they are... dry, you can pair them with some great Italian sweet wine, such as Vin Santo!