What is a Maritozzo?
Maritozzo is essentially a sweet roll cut open and filled with panna, fresh whipped cream.
This sweet is from the Lazio region and can be found in many bars in Rome.
Before the ubiquitous cornetti (Italian croissants) took over, maritozzi were the favourite breakfast of the Romans, particularly in the 1950s and 1960s.
The origins of their unusual name is a sweet one: Young grooms-to-be gave them to their fiancées, hence the name maritozzi, which means “almost husband,” from the Italian word for husband, marito.
The whipped cream-filled brioche that no Roman can renounce.”
BEST MARITOZZO IN ROME
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MARITOZZI IN TRASTEVERE (ROME)
Here the Recipe:
For the brioche:
Flour, 250 grams (1 and ¾ cup) plus extra for kneading.
Sugar, 50 grams (1/4 cup)
Salt, 1 pinch
Water, 125 ml (1/2 cup) warm
Active Dry Yeast, 6 grams (2 tsp.)
Malted Milk, 1 heaping teaspoon (or substitute honey)
Butter, 40 grams (3 Tbsp), softened and cubed
Egg, 1, yolk separated from the white
Zest of one orange
For the sugar glaze:
Water, 50 ml (1/2 cup)
Sugar, 75 grams (3/8 cup)
For the filling
Heavy Whipping Cream, 500 ml (2 cups)
Sugar, 50 grams (1/4 cup)
Stir the yeast in the warm (not hot) water until dissolved. Add the malted milk and stir until dissolved. Set aside. Measure the flour, sugar and salt into a medium bowl. Stir together. Form a well in the centre and add the butter, egg yolk and orange zest.
Slowly add the liquid, mixing with a fork to gradually incorporate the flour mixture from the inside out.
When all of the liquid has been added and the dry mixture incorporated, remove the dough from the bowl and turn it out onto a smooth, lightly floured surface. Knead gently for 5 minutes until it forms a smooth, round ball.
Sprinkle a bit of flour into a smaller bowl, place the dough inside and cover it loosely with plastic wrap. Let the dough rise in a warm location for at least 2 hours.
After two hours, add a sprinkle of flour to your work surface and turn your dough back out onto it. Divide your dough into 6 equal small, oval (or football shaped) buns.
We used our food scale to ensure that they were equal sized. Place the buns onto a baking pan lined with parchment paper. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise for 30 minutes.
Beat the egg white lightly with a fork. Uncover the buns and reshape into ovals if needed. Use a pastry brush to Carefully brush the buns with egg white. Cover once again with plastic wrap and let rise for one hour more.
Bake at 180º C, 350º F for approximately 20 minutes, until the maritozzi are a deep golden brown on top.
While the maritozzi are baking, prepare the sugar glaze. Heat water to almost a boil, and then turn off the heat. Add the sugar and let dissolve, stirring just once or twice. Let cool.
When the maritozzi are done, remove them from the oven and while still hot, brush them with the sugar glaze. Let cool.
While the maritozzi are cooling, whip the cream together with the sugar to firm peaks.
When the maritozzi are completely cool, slice into them diagonally without cutting all the way through. If helpful, moisten your fingers and hold each maritozzo carefully at its base, to avoid the sugar glaze sticking to your fingers and pulling pieces of the brioche away.
Using a pastry spatula, open up the “mouth” of each maritozzo and fill it with whipped cream, using the spatula to create a smooth edge, and a moistened paper towel to wipe away any extra whipped cream.
Enjoy as a decadent, Roman-style breakfast or with your afternoon espresso as a special treat.