Traditional Maltese Easter Sweets - Figolli Recipe

10 April 2017

It will soon be Easter, and aside from the religious celebrations, it is a time for indulging on a variety of sweet goodies and candies. But if you’re planning a holiday in Malta, what sort of delicious delicacies can you expect to find upon your arrival? The Maltese have a wonderfully tasty Easter treat called the Figolla and here you will find all the information you need about it and how to recreate it from the comfort of your own home!

What is a Figolla?

The Figolla can be traced back thousands of years and has its roots in pagan history but more recently, they are a traditional post-lent snack and are often given to children. They generally come in the shape of rabbits, butterflies, or Easter eggs, but you can also find them shaped like men and women as well. They are a mouth-watering mixture of biscuit, marzipan and icing, with a gooey almond paste in the centre and sometimes come with chocolate on top as well! You can buy these everywhere around this time of the year, from supermarkets, bakeries, confectionaries, and other food shops and they are a must try for anyone visiting the islands.

Make this Delicious Treat at Home!

Once you try one, you are sure to be hooked so follow the simple recipe below and make yourself the traditional Figolli whenever you so desire!

What you will need for the pastry:

  • 400g of butter
  • 800g of flour
  • 200g of sugar
  • 3 egg yolks
  • ½ tsp of grated lemon rind
  • A cupful of water

What you will need for the filling:

  • 400g of sugar
  • 400g of ground almonds
  • 3 egg whites

How to make it:

1. First, start by sieving the flour into a large bowl. Slowly rub in the butter until the mixture becomes like a firm paste. Add the sugar and lemon rind into the mix and keep on stirring. After this, add the egg yolks and just enough water to keep it at the consistency of a stiff paste.

2. Now to prepare the best bit! Thoroughly mix the almonds and sugar together and gradually add the egg whites whilst being sure to keep stirring. 

3. Next up, dust your worktop with flour and roll out the pastry. Using biscuit cutters, or your own cardboard design, cut out two identical shapes.

4. Slather on the almond filling to a thickness of about 1cm and be sure to leave a space of 1cm around the edges. Once you have done this, add the corresponding half of the figolla, and push the edges together. 

5. This is when the magic happens. Put them in the oven on a greased tray and bake for an hour at 175°C. Once cooked and cooled, you can add your own icing or fun designs to personalise your figolla.

Now it’s time to enjoy the fruits of your labour, share with friends, family, and colleagues and don’t forget to tell them about that wonderful place where you first tried them and maybe they will be booking flights to Malta as well!

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