Brioche with “tuppo” and almond granita, a classic of Catania!

Brioche with “tuppo” and almond granita, a classic of Catania!

A torrid day in a Sicilian summer, or rather Catanese, where you cannot miss a dessert that today I want to tell you with a very special family recipe.

The catanese brioche with "tuppo", is known all over the world and its name derives from the traditional low chignon of women, in the Catania dialect it is called "tuppu", which they wore long ago and that still some wonderful woman of "other generation ”carries with pride. Its history of ancient origins, and its unforgettable taste make this dessert a must of Catanese pastry.

The recipe for Brioche with tuppo and almond granita

Just last year, during the pandemic, when everything seemed surreal and forced us to cuddle at home, I went back to leaf through the family recipe book to make the legendary croissants.
Here is our recipe!


  • 200 gr milk
  • 20 gr brewer's yeast
  • 2 eggs
  • 10 gr orange blossom honey
  • About 30 g of water
  • 70 gr of seed oil
  • 80 gr granulated sugar
  • 1 grated lemon peel
  • 1 saffron
  • 500 gr flour 00
  • 10 gr fine salt
  • How to:
    put milk, sugar, honey, yeast, oil, grated lemon peel in a bowl and mix until smooth.
    Add the salt, eggs, water, flour and mix well.
    Transfer the dough to a bowl and let it rise for at least 2 hours covered with plastic wrap.

    Deflate the dough by working it with your hands (it will be slightly sticky) and form, on a lightly floured surface, 80g balls each and smaller 15g balls.
    Arrange the larger balls on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper, make a bowl on each, brush it with beaten egg with a little milk and place the smaller balls on top.
    Brush the "tuppo" again and let it rise for another 2 hours, in the oven off with the light on.
    Brush again with egg and milk and bake in a static oven preheated to 180 ° for 20 min. about

    For the almond granita, the most classic from Catania, I usually buy the almond block, there are many artisan producers in Sicily who keep the flavors as genuine as they used to be ...
    250 g of almond paste, 500 ml of water and a pinch of salt.

Add the water and a pinch of salt to the dough that you have made into small pieces and in a container dissolve the dough until the mixture is homogeneous. Pass the mixture through a colander to have a creamier granita. Put the container in the freezer for about 1 hour, breaking the ice crystals every time they form, up to about 4 hours, when you get a creamy consistency, taking care with the tines of the fork to "scrape" the granita to give it back its consistency desired.
Of course I invite you to try the artisanal ones in the Catania area that will amaze you with their goodness and the difference in tastes to choose from, all to be tasted, such as: figs and mulberries, my favorites, but also toasted almonds, lemon, strawberry, peach … Depending on the seasons, because the km0 and following the season for a correct eco-sustainability makes this product the winning key!

Written by:
Paola F. J. Torrisi

Paola is the founder of Take it Slowly. She graduated in Foreign Languages ​​and Literature, and entered the world of tourism immediately becoming interested in the incoming tourism of Sicily, a...

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