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The traditional sweet in Catania for All Souls Day? It’s the “Rame di Napoli!”

Do you know what the ‘Rame di Napoli’ are? Literally the translation means Naples’ copper and they are a dessert prepared for the festivity of All Saints and All Souls, the first two days of November. Funny as it sounds they are not from Naples (Napoli) but from Catania. Why? 

History tells us that during the Borbonic domination in Sicily, also known as Regno delle Due Sicilie, a new copper coin was forged as a substitute for the more valuable silver and gold coins. People then decided to pay homage to this coin creating a sweet that would reproduce it. That’s how the Rama di Napoli was born!

Ingredients & Preparation: 

For the mixture
500 gr 00 flour

150 gr caster sugar
100 gr honey
100 gr butter
100 gr cocoa powder 

350 ml milk
3 ts of ground cinnamon
1 ts ammonia for desserts

some cloves (around 12)

For the icing
200 gr dark chocolate
80 gr butter
Orange marmelade or hazelnut spread
Grounded or chopped pistachio (Bronte)

Preheat the oven at 180°. Melt the butter with milk and honey in a sauce pan on a medium heat. In a large bowl sieve the flour together with the cocoa powder, ammonia, cinnamon and the grounded cloves. Add the sugar and mix all well. Pour the mix of milk into the bowl and stir until you have a smooth mixture (as shown in the pic above).


On an oven tray place a sheet of baking paper and transfer the mixture in small quantities (around 2 or 3 full tablespoons each) paying attention in keeping them distant one another. 
As soon as the oven has reached the right temperature bake your cookies for 15 minutes. Don’t worry if while they are in the oven there will be an unpleasant smell, it’s the ammonia, and it will completely disappear once the cookies are cooked and ready. Take them out and let them cool down. 
In the meantime prepare the frosting by melting the dark chocolate and the butter together. Spread either a veil of orange marmalade or the hazelnut spread, and then, once the frosting is ready use it to cover the cookies. 

Leave them few minutes to set and then finish the decoration by sparkling the pistachio on top. Here we go… your rama di Napoli is ready to be tasted. Enjoy!

A special thanks to Nora for this recipe and these beautiful pictures. All right reserved.



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