Fried chocolate & chestnut pastries

These calzoncelli di castagne are a speciality of the Puglia region, though versions of this pastry are made throughout the country, with different names and fillings…

chestnut chocolate pastry
 about 20
Preparation time 30-45 minutes, plus resting
Cooking time 20 minutes


For the pastry

• 300g plain flour

• 50g unsalted butter, softened

• 100ml milk

• 1 medium free-range egg

• 50g caster sugar

For the filling

• 100ml plain chocolate

• 50ml coffee

• 250g pre-cooked chestnuts

• 100g caster sugar

• 40g plain cocoa powder

• 3 heaped tbsp plum or apricot jam

• peanut oil, for frying

To Serve

• icing sugar


1 To make the pastry, place all the pastry ingredients in a large bowl and mix together to form a smooth but soft dough. Leave to rest for 30 minutes while you make the filling.

2 To make the filling, begin by melting the chocolate in a double boiler with the coffee. In a large bowl, add the chestnuts and mash with the back of a fork. Leave as fine or as chunky as you wish (this is personal choice – I prefer mine to have a few chestnut chunks in the filling). Next, add the sugar, cocoa powder, jam and melted chocolate and coffee. Stir everything together really well, then leave to cool.  

3 Once the filling is cool, begin to roll out the pastry. As you are effectively making over-sized ravioli, I use my pasta machine to roll the dough out to the right thickness of about 2-3mm. If you haven’t got a pasta machine, simply roll the dough out by hand. Once the dough has been rolled to the right thickness, cut out circles around 6-7cm in diameter and add a tablespoon of the filling to the centre. Brush the borders with water and seal with another circle of pastry. Continue until all the filling and pastry is used up.

4 Next, heat some peanut oil in a large, high-sided frying pan set over a medium heat – the oil should be about 5cm deep. When hot but not smoking, add the pastries in batches and cook for
about 2 minutes on each side. Drain on kitchen paper and dust with icing sugar once cool.

Find more Italian-inspired recipes here