Local products05 January 2020

Recipe of the Week: Fugassa d’la Befana

A very ancient cake prepared for Befana celebration, it can be compared to panettone or Easter colomba, but it is thought to be even older.

Recipe of the Week: Fugassa d’la Befana

Original from Piedmont, in the province of Cuneo, Fugassa d’la Befana is a soft, round-shaped cake, which reminds of a daisy. Like all ancient customs, Fugassa d’la Befana also has a quite original tradition: hidden within are a white and a black fava bean. Whomever found the white fava bean had to pay the cake expenses, and the one who found  the black fava bean paid the wine!

Fugassa d’la Befana i salso prepared in other areas in Piedmont, near Alessandria, for instance is called “Fugassa col Carsent”.

Ingredients for 2 loaves:

  • 1 kg of flour type "0" Manitoba
  • 20 grams of sourdough yeast
  • 1 glass of warm milk
  • 280 g butter
  • 300 grams of sugar
  • 1 teaspoon honey
  • 5 eggs
  • 20 g salt
  • 3 tablespoons grappa
  • 1 dried fava
  • cubes of candied orange and cedar
  • vanilla


Mix all ingredients well, let rest all night indoors at about 23 ° C. In the morning, split into 2 buns. Let rest about ten minutes and work the dough into a thickness of about 2.5 cm, place on baking sheets with parchment paper. At this point, cut several lines without reaching the center, like a daisy. Then twist each portion or overlap with the next one; make rise at a temperature of 27 ° C.

Spread the surface with egg white and sprinkle with granulated sugar. Bake in an oven at about 200 ° C. Fugassa d’la Befana may be consumed within 1-2 days when stored in a dry place.

Deborah Bellotti

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