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Salted Pizza Bites

Crescentine
Not everything at Nannini's, Siena's famous pastry shop, is sweet; there are savory offerings too, like mini vegetable and cheese tarts, sandwiches with every type of meat and cheese or vegetable filling imaginable, and crescentine, small pizza-like bread studded with flecks of rosemary that are deep fried.

They make a great snack or an antipasto served with olives and chips of pecorino cheese. The dough is easy to make in a food processor or by hand. Crescentine are best served warm the day they are made.

MAKES AT LEAST 3 1/2 DOZEN

Ingredients

2 cups King Arthur™ Unbleached, All-Purpose Flour

3/4 teaspoon fine sea salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

1 1/2 tablespoons minced fresh rosemary needles

2/3 cup dry white wine

4 cups vegetable oil, sunflower, peanut, or canola

Coarse sea salt for sprinkling on top

Directions

Mix the flour, salt, and baking powder together in a bowl. Work in the butter and rosemary, then add the wine a little at a time until a soft ball of dough is formed. Roll the dough into a 12-x-11-inch rectangle, then trim the piece to 10-x-10. Cut 2-inch squares. Reroll the scraps to make more.

Heat the oil in a deep fryer or heavy-duty pot until a thermometer registers 375°F. Fry the crescentine in the oil until golden brown. Remove them with a slotted spoon to a baking sheet lined with paper towels. Sprinkle the crescentine with salt and serve warm.

Variation: Use a combination of herbs or add 1/2 cup of minced prosciutto to the dough.

This recipe is featured on show 2122 – Classic Tuscan Dishes.

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