Cocuzze of Halloween (Halloween pumpkins)

Soft brioche with flavor and shape of pumpkin, sweet with a touch of vanilla, suited for breakfast and snack

recipe given by our chef at .

ricetta immagine


For the dough:
1kg strong flour (high gluten content such as Manitoba)
150 g sugar
150g butter
4 eggs
170 g sourdough starter (sourdough mother)
20 g salt
500 g pumpkin
50 ml white wine
3 packets of vanilla (or vanilla bean)

for the icing:
1 egg yolk
50 ml milk

These ingredients are able to feed:  24persons


For the cream of pumpkin:
Take the pumpkin into small cubes and place in a saucepan with a bit of water and vanilla, let it simmer, pour white wine and cook, it takes about 40-50 minutes, adding water if necessary. When the pumpkin will be very tender blend it with an immersion blender and obtain a velvety cream, then let it cool.

Refreshing mother dough:
Knead sourdough (possibly after washing, if the dough has acquired a strong acid smell). Use equal weight of Manitoba flour and 50% by weight of water. Let it rise until the dough has tripled its volume. You have to repeat this three times. After the third refreshment the dough is ready to be used.

For the dough:
Place the flour in a large bowl and shape it  as a fountain. In the center put the refreshed sourdough, eggs, sugar, cream of pumpkin soup cooled, butter and salt, knead for a long time (at least 20 minutes) to obtain a very elastic dough. Since the level of humidity of the pumpkin cream is variable you need to adjust the consistency of the dough by adding more flour if the dough is too soft, or milk if instead it proves  to be too hard.

Continue to knead on floured pastry board by doing a few bending to give strength to the dough. Then form a ball and place it in the bowl to rise wrapped in foil.
Let rise until it reaches twice the initial volume. When the dough will be leavened, make some folds again, knead again and form a loaf. Cut pieces of dough 80-100 g (or you set the size you prefer), knead and form balls. Make vertical cuts on the surface of the ball with a knife sharp blade (as shown in the image). The balls look just like small pumpkins.

Add a tapering piece of dough in the center of the sphere, this procedure will form the “stem” of the “pumpkin”.
Arrange the Cocuzza (small pumpkins) in baking dish on a sheet of parchment paper and let rise until it doubles in volume. When your pumpkin-shaped brioche will be leavened in the right place, sprinkle with beaten egg yolk with milk, bake and cook for about 15-20 minutes at 200 ° C. When they are cooked, arrange them on a grill to cool them.
They are so good without adding anything, but you can fill with custard, jam or chocolate cream and why not, you can use the same way as the Sicilian brioche stuffed with homemade ice cream.

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