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Crumiri

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Crumiri are crescent-shaped cookies made in the Monferrato region in Piemonte, from a combination of flour and finely ground corn meal. Very good, and in my experience people ask for more. To make a batch you'll need:

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 20 minutes

Total Time: 50 minutes

Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 cups (200 g) finely ground corn meal
  • 1 1/2 cups (175 g) unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1/2 pound (220 g) unsalted butter, at room temperature (it should be soft), broken into bits
  • 1/2 cup (100 g) sugar
  • 3 eggs
  • A packet of vanillin or a teaspoon of vanilla extract

Preparation:

Sift all but 1/4 cup of the flour onto your work surface with the corn meal. Add the sugar and the vanillin (if you're using vanilla extract add it with the eggs), scoop a well into the mound, and crack the eggs into it. Work everything together quickly, using the tips of your fingers.

Add the butter and continue kneading the dough energetically, until it is smooth, homogenous, and elastic. Shape the dough into a ball. Use the remaining flour to dust a bowl, put the dough in it, cover it, and let it rest for at least 30 minutes.

Come time to make the crumiri, preheat your oven to 400 F (200 C).

Take the dough and shape it into a considerable number of snakes the diameter of your little finger and about 4 inches (10 cm) long. Use a fork to flatten them so they are about half as thick as they are wide; the fork will leave longitudinal ridges that are quite distinctive.

Next, bend the flattened ropes into the crumiro's characteristic open parenthesis ( shape, and put them on a cookie sheet lined with a piece of oven parchment.

Bake the crumiri for about 20 minutes. Cool them on a rack, and they're ready.

A couple of observations:
  • If the cornmeal is too coarse the texture of the crumiri will suffer.
  • The word crumiro also means strike breaker, i.e. scab.

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