How can I even begin to explain the wonderfulness that is a fresh Italian Nutella filled Bomboloni aka “Bombe”. To me they are little fried pockets of heaven. Bomboloni aka Bombe are Italian filled doughnuts (similar to the Berliner, krafne, etc.) and are eaten as a dessert.
The recipe is primarily from the Tuscany area but with many variations up an down Italy. This one in particular has eggs where as the true Tuscan variety does not. Oh, and my favourite little tidbit of info, the pastries name is a reference of the very high calorie density of this recipe (to be read as “calorie bomb”) Yes its fried (which I don’t usually do) and yes they are no where near considered “low fat” but every now and again I figure why the heck not and go for it, life is short after all and these are so so good!
When slightly warm the nutella does this wonderful dance with the just fried dough and they seem to just compliment each other in a way that is simply amazing.
In recent years these became big in the area I lived in but it would almost kill me to spend close to $20 for a dozen of these, so naturally I needed to find away to replicate them at home. I made a batch of these just the other day after much research (which did include a lot of tasting, not many complaints coming from me on that) and brought them over to my friends. These little beauties literally flew off the platter which made me a very happy girl as I received some great feedback! Everyone enjoyed them and they were completely worth it.
Now, you may see that it takes 5 hours to make this but don’t panic and do everyone a favour and keep reading! 4 of those hours are resting time for the dough to rise and get all airy and yummy. Take your time with this recipe, follow the instructions, and most importantly; Be Patient !
I set up everything before hand (there are notes in the recipe) and started frying one at a time until I was comfortable then upgraded to 2 at a time. I don’t recommend doing more than 2 at a time as you cannot take your eyes of that pot for too long or they burn and there goes all your hard work.
Give these Bombe a try as they are delicious and so much cheaper than buying them!
Italian Nutella filled Bomboloni aka “Bombe”
- 250 grams bread flour
- 250 grams Italian “00” flour or all-purpose flour doppio zero
- 50 grams sugar
- 11 grams instant yeast
- 1 vanilla bean split and scraped
- pinch salt
- 250 ml milk
- 3 large eggs
- 50 grams unsalted butter cut into small pieces, softened
- vegetable spray
- vegetable oil or canola oil for frying
- sugar for rolling finished bombe
- Nutella for filling
- Place both kinds of flours, 50 grams of sugar, instant yeast, and salt into a large bowl and combine using a whisk.
- Heat the milk, scraped vanilla bean seeds and emptied vanilla pods in a medium sized pot to a temperature between 40°C and 43°C (105°F and 110°F).
- While the milk is heating, make a well in the center of the dry ingredients and crack 3 eggs into it, beating to break the yolks and gently combine.
- Once milk is heated, remove from the stove, take out the vanilla bean pods (discard them) and pour into the well created in the dry ingredients.
- Work the milk, eggs and dry ingredients with the tips of your fingers.
- Gradually add the butter, one piece at a time, working each piece into the dough before adding the next.
- Transfer dough to a clean, lightly floured work surface and kneed (using more flour as needed) until smooth and elastic (not sticky). This takes about 10 to 15 minutes.
- Transfer dough back to bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and leave to rise in a warm place until doubled in size (about 1½ to 2 hours).
- During the dough’s resting time, cut out 26 – 28, 5″x5″ squares of parchment paper.
- When dough has doubled in size, transfer to a clean, lightly floured surface and gently roll out to about 1 cm thickness (less than ½ -inch)
- Using a 2¾” to 3 ” pastry cutter, cut the dough rounds as close as possible to each other.
- Transfer cut dough circles to parchment paper squares (previously cut out) lightly sprayed with Vegetable Spray and place in 3″ deep baking dishes. Once each entire baking dish is full, cover with plastic wrap. (Note: the depth of the baking dish is to ensure that the plastic wrap doesn’t come into contact with the rising dough and potentially sticking to it when you go to pull it off)
- With remaining dough, lightly re-kneed, place back into bow, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise 30 minutes then repeat the process with rolling and cutting until all the dough has been used.
- Let all dough circles rise for another 1½ to 2 hours (starting from the time the first one was cut) Note: You will know they are ready when they look to be “full of air”
- When it is time to cook, prepare 1 large plate, lined with paper towel for draining and one medium bowl with some sugar in it for dusting after draining.
- Prepare a pastry bag, fitted with a 1 cm tip and fill with nutella, place aside.
- Heat oil to 340° – 350° (using a fry thermometer) lift each square of parchment with dough circle on it and gently lower into oil using a flat slotted fry spider or similar tool then quickly fish the paper out using steel tongs. (this is to make sure you don’t destroy those bubbles produced during the 2nd rise) Fry each bomboloni, one or two at a time until golden brown, about 1 to 2 minutes per side, flipping once. (bomboloni should have the distinct lighter line in colour between the two golden halves)
- Remove cooked bomboloni, quickly drain on paper towel and immediately roll in sugar until evenly coated – place aside on a tray, then start another batch to fry (this gives the oil a few seconds to come back up to temperature between batches)
- While bomboloni are still warm, use a sharp knife and puncture a hole along the side – in towards the middle, and with the pre-filled pastry bag pipe in enough nutella until it feels “heavy” (I do this step while another batch just starts cooking)
- “Bombe” are best served the day they are made – and are even better when fresh and still warm !