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Ricotta filled Graffe

Ricotta filled Graffe

How to make a traditional sweet from the Italian town of Trapani: Ricotta filled Graffe.

Course Dessert
Cuisine Italian
Prep Time 2 hours
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 2 hours 20 minutes
Servings 12
Author Manuela Zangara


Ricotta Filling

  • 500 gms – 1.1 lbs. ricotta
  • 360 gms – 12.5 oz. sugar
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 70 gms – 2.5 oz dark chocolate chips
  • 1 pinch salt


  • 500 gms – 1.1 lbs. flour
  • 50 gms – 1.75 oz. lard
  • 50 gms – 1.75 oz. sugar
  • 7 gms dry – 2 ¼ tsp yeast
  • 250 ml water – 1 cup + more to make batter, lukewarm
  • 1 egg
  • 1 pinch salt
  • Vegetable oil for deep frying
  • Olive oil for handling the dough
  • Icing sugar for dusting


Ricotta Filling

  1. Put all the ingredients (apart from the chocolate chips) in the bowl of an electric mixer and whisk until smooth.
  2. Fold in the chocolate chips. Let the filling rest in the fridge for at least 2 hours.


  1. Dissolve the yeast and half of the sugar in the lukewarm water and set aside to activate.
  2. Sift the flour in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with the hook attachment. Add the rest of the sugar, lard and salt. When frothy, add the water with the yeast. Knead until it comes together.
  3. Remove the hook and put the paddle attachment. While kneading, add the egg and enough water to get a thick and sticky batter (like in the picture).
  4. Let it rise for 1 hour, covered, in a greased bowl.
  5. Grease your hands with olive oil and make 12 balls the size of small oranges.
  6. Put them on a tray covered with baking paper and let them rise for 30 minutes.
  7. Deep fry them at 170°C – 340°F until golden brown. Put them on a plate covered with kitchen paper to drain the excess oil.
  8. When lukewarm cut a slit halfway through the graffe and and fill them with a generous amount of ricotta cream.
  9. Dust some icing sugar on the top and serve

Recipe Notes

Be gentle when you put the raw graffe in the oil or they may deflate.