Ficoccelle with pistachio cream

Ficoccelle with pistachio cream

Introduction to the recipe

The pistachio is rare and precious. Sicily is the only region in Italy that, thanks to the Arabs, produces pistachios. The most coveted variety is the pistachio from Bronte. It grows on the slopes of Mt. Etna and is used in a wide range of diverse recipes, both sweet and savoury. Ficoccelle with pistachio are a true delicacy, with their thin crunchy shell enclosing a centre of soft cream made with ground pistachios, to make it even more delicious.



80 grams


Ingredients for about 24 ficoccelle (80 grams)

For the rice:

  • 500 grams of rice ("Roma" and "Originario" rices, mixed in equal doses)
  • 500 ml of milk
  • 500 ml of water
  • 80 grams of butter
  • 170 grams of sugar
  • 1 vanilla stick

For the finishing touch:

  • 100 gr of flour
  • 180 ml of water
  • 2 eggs
  • 150 gr of bread crumbs
  • 100 gr of Caster sugar

For the filling:

  • 300 grams of pistachio, toasted and peeled

  • 100 gr of sugar

  • 100 ml of milk




Preparation of rice and filling


How to prepare the rice:

  • Put the water and milk in a pan with the butter, the vanilla stick engraved for long and sugar. When it comes to a boil add the rice and mix well
  • Cover and cook over low heat until the rice absorbs everything and is cooked but al dente
  • pour the rice on a cold surface and spread evenly to allow rapid cooling
  • When the rice has cooled, it is ready to prepare the ficoccelle

It is important that the rice is quite dry and cold.

The filling

  • Place 200 gr of pistachios and the sugar into a food processor. Let the processor run and, after a while, the pistachios will release their essential oils and turn into a paste
  • Add the milk in a thin stream while continuing to run the food processor. Do not stop until the resulting cream is smooth in texture, free of lumps and not too dense
  • Chop the remaining pistachios coarsely, add them to the pistachio cream and stir them in well, then transfer the resulting mixture to a pastry bag

Shape the ficoccelle


The finishing touch

Put the ficoccelle in the batter and in the bread crumbs as follows:

  • In a bowl, place the flour
  • Add the egg and water and beat well with whips
  • When the batter is smooth and dense, pass the ficoccelle
  • Immediately after having passed them in the batter, pass the ficoccelle in bread crumbs


  • Fry in plenty of oil until golden brown, to ensure your ficoccelle fry up perfectly, use one of the following oils: peanut oil, olive oil, or palm oil.
  • Heat the oil to the ideal temperature, 190°C, either in a frying pan or by setting the temperature on your deep fryer.
  • If using a pan, you can make sure that the oil has reached the proper temperature by dropping in a bread crumb. If it sizzles, then the oil is ready.
  • Immerse the ficoccelle gently in the oil, only a few at a time, so as to prevent the temperature of the oil from falling too low.
  • When they are done, place the ficoccelle on absorbent paper, then serve.
  • Roll the ficoccelle in castor sugar and serve

Enjoy your meal !


For ficoccelle with a more delicate flavour, you can fill them with plain custard with finely chopped pistachios stirred into it.

Bonus idea

To make your ficoccelle even more “pistachio-y”, you can roll them in finely chopped pistachios once they've been fried.

What do you think of the recipe? Send us the photos!

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  • Arancinotto Staff