Are we all ready for Easter yet? With it now fast approaching, it was only fair that we would share these are the Sicilian Easter Cookies I have made once with my nonna. These are simple to make and very much low effort. They are also great if you want to bake & decorate with the kids. But let’s not go too fast.
The Sicilian Easter Cookies, or Cuddura as they are also more commonly known, have got a great deal of tradition and history behind them. Cuddura comes from Greek and translates in crown, and that’s pretty much one of the many shapes this can take.
Recommended: Sugar Cookies with Chocolate Chips.
The tradition behind Cuddura.
With the crown goes a hard-boiled egg, and this is very much symbolic. The egg, in Christian symbology, represents the resurrection of Christ. And while I am not going to go all religious on you, just know it meant a lot back when I made them with my grandma in Sicily.
In all honesty, by the time I was old enough to actually learn Cuddura from her, my grandma had got rid of the wood fire oven and stopped baking altogether. So the only actual memory I have is decorating my Sicilian Easter Cookies once. Which, to be fair, it’s a long stretch to call it memory.
I remember something about decorating my crown, that’s for sure. But I wouldn’t put my money on the fact that it was a crown. It could have been a bird. I do not recall, at all. I remember the good bits, the being all together with the family and eating part.
- 250g plain flour
- 100g white sugar
- 100g unsalted butter
- 1 egg
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tbsp milk (to brush)
- 1/2 cup rainbow sprinkles
- 4 hard-boiled eggs
- Boil your 4 eggs and once they are ready (roughly 10-12 minutes) drop them in an ice bath.
- Start by prepping the dough: in a medium bowl, beat the eggs with the sugar for a couple of minutes with a whisk.
- Add the flour, baking powder, vanilla and chopped butter, then work with your hands until everything comes together in a ball. Cover in cling film and let it rest in the fridge for 30 minutes.
- Once it has rested, remove it from the fridge and roll it on a floured surface until it's roughly 1cm thick. Cut in the shape you prefer - traditionally it would be a basket, a crown, a bell or a dove - and decorate with some extra pastry, making sure you keep some on the side for the crosses on top of the eggs.
- We went for bells and decorated the top with some rolls tied together. Cut all your four shapes and place the boiled egg in the middle, then cover the egg with two strips of pastry to make a cross.
- Brush all the pastry with milk, then drizzle the rainbow sprinkles on top.
- Turn on the oven to 180°C and bake your cookies for 15 minutes.
- Let them cool off completely before digging in!
These keep fine for a couple of days, and make the perfect table decor for Easter Sunday!
The Sicilian Easter Cookies in all their glory.
You can read a bit more history from here – there is also a recipe so feel free to try that one out too!
I remember these being a little more bread-like, but other than that – they taste beautiful. While the boiled egg might be a little off-putting, I can assure you they are totally worth it. They are a world apart from the Hot Cross Buns I have made a couple of weeks ago, but totally fun to make – and eat!
Also, it is worth checking out our Easter Egg Guide: Cristina has created a list of the 12 eggs you must check out, don’t miss out on it.