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Zeppole Filled with Blackberry Pomegranate Jam

<em>Zeppole</em> Filled with Blackberry Pomegranate Jam Related:   dairy, desserts & sweets, Europe, Hanukkah, kid-friendly, vegetarian

Prep time: 15-20 mins

Cook time: 20-25 mins

Yield: 4-6 servings

I was meeting with Jonathan Stahl, the Executive Director of Ballpark Operations and Guest Experience for the Washington Nationals, and he mentioned to me that jelly-filled doughnuts are a traditional Chanukah food. Jelly doughnuts remind me of one of my favorite childhood desserts and something we make at Graffiato: zeppole, which are light, airy balls of dough traditionally tossed in powered sugar. For this recipe, I fill them with a blackberry-pomegranate jam.


  • Blackberry Pomegranate Jam
  • 4 pints blackberries
  • ½ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup pomegranate juice
  • ½ teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar
  • Zeppole
  • 6 cups canola oil (quantity may vary depending on your deep fryer)
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 stick unsalted butter
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1½ cups flour
  • 4 large whole eggs
  • ½ cup ricotta cheese
  • Zest of 1 orange
  • Powdered sugar for sprinkling


  • To make the jam, in a small saucepan over medium-low heat, combine blackberries, sugar, juice and salt. Simmer for 12 to 15 minutes stirring occasionally until a thick syrup forms. Remove from heat, cool for a few minutes and pass through a fine mesh strainer. Add vinegar and set aside to cool completely. Transfer to a pastry bag.
  • For the zeppole, heat canola oil in an electric deep fryer to 350 degrees. If you do not have a fryer, use a heavy-bottomed pot and a candy thermometer.
  • In a large saucepan, bring the water, butter and sugar to a boil. Gently whisk in the flour. Lower the heat to low and simmer for 1 minute. Transfer the mixture to the bowl of a stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment and beat on medium speed for 2 minutes. Add the eggs one at a time allowing each one to incorporate before adding the next one. Add ricotta and orange zest. Mix until just combined.
  • Using an ice cream scoop, gently drop a heaping tablespoon of the dough individually into the hot oil. Fry in small batches for 5 to 6 minutes until golden brown, turning halfway through to cook evenly. Using a wok skimmer or slotted spoon, remove the zeppole from the oil and drain on a paper towel. Cut the corner off of the jam filled pastry bag and fill each zeppole with the jam. Toss with powdered sugar and serve immediately.

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