It is said that during the Bourbon kingdom, after the unification of the Kingdom of Naples with the Kingdom of Sicily, a coin containing a copper alloy was minted, in order to replace the richer alloy of gold and silver. With the introduction of this coin, a dessert was created in its honor, thus inventing the Rama of Naples. This is how the Coppers of Naples were given their name.
Many sweets are among the traditions of the annual Feast of the Dead, including Copper of Naples and the bones of the dead. But what exactly does sweets of the dead mean?
To explain it to you I must go back in time through my memories.
I looked forward to the arrival of the feast of the dead. More than Christmas, this was the real feast for us children. If we had behaved well during the year, on November 2, our deceased relatives would come to bring us the gifts that were hidden in the house by our grandmother and for us it was a real adventure to look for them. It was always toys! Growing up Grandma ‘Nitta gave me “linen.” Sheets, bedspreads, towels and so on were gifted to me in preparation for the day I would become a wife. Today I think I have never yet used the “linen.” 😉
I remember seeing on television all the series that showed us the various Halloween celebrations and those who would “trick or treat.” That made me think about how strange it was to dress up for the dead rather than at Carnival! Different traditions and cultures fascinated me. And I felt lucky to receive all those gifts, a little less than the sweets that grandmothers gave me. I tried the “bones of mottos” dessert several times, but once I lost an already dangling tooth: what a tragedy!!
My favorite sweets were “the branches” with Nutella of course!! I enjoyed them even with pumpkin! And to think that they were once classified as the sweets of the poor and sold at low cost. They were also used to prepare pastries and desserts that were not sold in the previous days (brioche and pizza base).
• 500 g flour 00
• 100 g chopped brioches or dry biscuits
• 1 egg
• 200 g Sugar
• 80 g Orange honey
• 100 g Bitter cocoa powder
• 60 g Butter
• 250 ml Milk
• 1 teaspoon Ammonia for sweets
• 5-6 Cloves
• 1/2 teaspoon Cinnamon powder
• 1 orange peel (grated)
TO MAKE IT
• 400 g Dark chocolate
• Pumpkin jam (or jam of any type or nutella or pistachio cream)
• Chopped pistachios (or almonds or hazelnuts)
Put the sugar in a bowl and mix it with the egg, add the honey and various spices, then cloves, cinnamon and orange zest.
Add the melted butter at room temperature and the crumbled biscuits and / or brioches, add the cocoa.
At this point the mixture will be made mostly of solid elements, add the milk and flour a little at a time in order to mix it. The proportion of milk varies depending on the advanced pastry you will use, about 250 ml but the proportion may vary by decreasing or increasing.
The dough must still be soft, I would say creamy.
Once worked you can create the copper of Naples.
Arrange a sheet of parchment paper on the pan, and with the help of a spoon and a spatula, arrange the dough by spacing it a little.
Put everything in the oven at 180 degrees for about 20 minutes.
When the coppers of Naples are cooked, take them out of the oven and let them cool completely before moving on to the filling and decoration.
Meanwhile, melt the chocolate in a bain-marie, adding a few tablespoons of milk if necessary to make the chocolate more fluid.
Then take the biscuits, spread the pumpkin jam on their surface and dip them upside down in the chocolate, then extract them by letting the excess chocolate run and sprinkle with the chopped grain that you like.
In addition to the jam, you can add Nutella or leave the biscuit natural.
Before serving the Rame di Napoli alla Catania with pumpkin, let them rest until the chocolate hardens.