Palermo Iris

The ancient recipe uses some sandwiches in the shape of rosettes, stuffed with ricotta cream that are rarely found in takeaways. In any case, both the old recipe that the more modern form one of the typical Sicilians “snacks” who are called in Palermo dialect “inis”.The marriage between a spongy dough, fried and a bit grainy, the ricotta cream and chocolate make this delicacy one of the milestones of Sicilian delicacies.
iris 1
But why this name, and where does this delicacy?
The birth of this goodness dates back to 1901, was in that year, in fact, that in the Palermo Massimo Theater is staging the premiere of Mascagni’s opera, “Iris”, it is on this occasion that the prestigious pastry chef Antonino Lo Verso, awarded the title of “Knight of Job” from H.M. Vittorio Emanuele III, born his latest creation in the field of pastry. Thus was born the Iris that from that moment onwards becomes in high demand by the prestigious guests who visit his café located in Via Roma. The success of this idea led him to call Iris also its local.
500 grams of flour 0
50 grams of butter
30 grams beer yeast
A pinch of salt
3 eggs
400 grams of sheep ricotta
2.5 dl milk
100 grams dark chocolate drops
100 grams of candied pumpkin, cut into small cubes
400 grams of sugar
bread crumbs
Seed oil for frying
Soften the butter. Put the ricotta with 250 grams of sugar in a fairly large bowl and knead with whips. Leave it for about half an hour, then add the chocolate drops, the candied pumpkin and set aside. Sift the flour, add the butter and start mixing. Add to the dough the chopped yeast, 150 grams of sugar, warm milk, little by little, working it all the time and finally add a pinch of salt. As soon as the mixture is well blended, add a beaten egg and continue to work the dough (if necessary, add a little water). The dough should be soft and you must leave covered to rise for two hours in a warm place. iris
Elapsed the two hours, take the dough, roll it out with a rolling pin and form some discs with a cutter by about 7 cm. (Or with the edge of a glass) with a thickness of about one centimeter. Put a spoonful of cream cheese on half of the disks and cover with the remaining disks, forming balls that have to be placed on a greased surface oil and let rise for 1 hour in a warm place. Finally pass them in beaten egg with a pinch of salt, then in bread crumbs and fry in deep oil until they are golden. Leave them on paper towels to lose the excess oil and let them cool.

The ancient recipe calls for the use of buns, similar to the rosettes, which must be scraped off of the crust. Remove a rod from the top of the bun (which must be stored), then through the hole partially remove the soft part and moisten them in sweetened milk. At this point fill with the cream cheese with the help of a wide mouth syringe through the hole. Plug the hole with the rod pushed aside, flour, dip in beaten eggs with a pinch of salt, then in bread crumbs and finally fry in deep oil until they are golden. Leave them on paper towels to lose the excess oil and let them cool. Today, Iris, or “Inis” as they call the people of Palermo, is a soft, crunchy, delicious spongy pasta.

Anyone wishing to try out can also use the common milk buns making sure to empty them of part of the soft interior to make room for the filling.

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