April month challenge in We knead to bake group is yeasted cookies ! Generally our challenge is to bake a bread ! But since this cookies is having yeast 🙂 Aparna suggested this recipe ! one of the easiest recipe so far ! baked and enjoyed having with my VIVA
Coming to the recipe Torcettini are made from yeasted dough and have a somewhat bread-like texture on the inside so I thought they qualified to be baked in this group. These are the first yeasted biscuits/ cookies I have ever baked and I thought it would be a nice change from bread, just this once.
Torcettini are smaller versions of Torcetti (meaning small twists), and these pear/ teardrop shaped twists are made of a dough of flour, yeast and butter which are shaped and then rolled in sugar before being baked. These biscuits/ cookies are synonymous with the town of Saint Vincent in Valle d’Aosta, a small mountainous region in North-Western Italy, even though they’re well known throughout the Piedmont region as well.
Torcettini di Saint Vincent
Warm water – 1/2 cup (about 45c (110f))
Instant Yeast – 1 tsp (ADY – 1 1/4 tsp)
All purpose flour – 1 1/2
Unsalted butter – 40 gm cold and cut in to small pieces
Granulated sugar – 1 /3 cup for rolling the cookies
Dissolve the yeast in the warm water, in a small bowl and keep aside.
Put the flour and the salt in the food processor bowl (or a largish regular bowl if kneading by hand) and pulse a couple of times to mix. Add the butter pieces and pulse until the butter is well mixed and the flour-butter mixture looks powdery.
Add the yeast-water mixture and pulse till it all comes together as a ball. Do not over process or knead. Place the ball of dough in a oiled bowl, turning it so it is well coated with the oil. Cover the bowl, and let the dough rise quite a bit. This dough does not really double in volume, but it should look “puffy” after about an hour or so. When you pinch off a bit from the top you can see the interior looking a bit like honeycomb. Press down the dough and deflate it, wrap it in cling warp and refrigerate it for at least one hour or up to 24 hours.
When ready to make the cookies, take the dough out and lightly roll it out into an approximately 6” square. If the dough feels sticky, scatter a little sugar on it. Using a pizza wheel cut the dough into four strips of equal width. Cut each strip into 6 equal pieces, by cutting across, making a total of 24 pieces. The measurements are not very critical in this part because this just makes it easier to have 24 equal sized bits of dough, as compared to pinching of bits of the dough.
Roll each piece into a pencil thick “rope” about 5” long. Sprinkle a little sugar on your work surface and roll the “rope” in it so the sugar crusts the dough uniformly. Form the “rope” into a loop crossing it over before the ends.
Place the Torcettini on parchment lined baking sheets, leaving 1 1/2″ between them. Leave them for about 20 minutes or so till they rise/ puff up slightly. They will not “puff up” much, like bread, but the “puff” will be visible.
Bake them at 160C (325F) for about 25 minutes till they’re a nice golden brown. Cool the cookies completely, on a rack. Store them in an air-tight container at room temperature. Although, I found them best the day they were baked. This recipe makes 24 cookies.
check out my other we knead to bake recipes !