Bisciola: Valtellina’s festive sweet 

A delicious recipe that brings together walnuts, figs and sultanas 

When it comes to uniting flavours that sum up the words ancient, intense, and unforgettable, a piece of Bisciola ticks all the boxes. Also known as ‘panettone valtellinese’, or ‘pan di fich’ (bread of figs) in the local dialect, this delicacy is never far from the table in Valtellina, especially not over the festive period. The origins go back centuries and there’s an air of mystery surrounding the beloved bisciola – rumours suggest its recipe goes back to the year 1700, when Napoleon spent time in Valtellina before the final battles of the First Italian Campaign. 

This dessert has all the hallmarks of down-to-earth, wholesome cooking – it’s enriched with dried fruit (figs, raisins, walnuts, hazelnuts and pine nuts), which lend an irresistible sweetness and crunch to every single mouthful, unleashing the inimitable scents and flavours found only in Valtellina. In short: the ultimate way to round off every meal.

Here’s the recipe:
Ingredients (feeds 4):
100 g whole milk
2 eggs
40 g butter
40 g sugar
200 g white flour
½ sachet of yeast
A pinch of salt
A little grated lemon peel
100 g walnuts
20 g pine nuts
100 g sultanas
60 g hazelnuts
150 g dried figs

According to tradition, the first step when preparing your bisciola is to knead the milk, egg, butter (soft/at room temperature), sugar, flour, yeast and salt in a large bowl until you’ve got a smooth, well-mixed and fairly soft dough. Add as much or as little of the lemon zest as you like, as well as the dried fruit (all finely chopped). 
When all the ingredients are well mixed, lay out the dough on a floured surface and shape it with your hands into an elongated form. Now put your bisciola into a buttered baking tray with a slice down the middle to ensure that it will bake well throughout. To add a touch of colour to your dessert, brush it with a beaten egg and place it in the oven for 30–40 minutes at 160–180°C.

Next level: Serve your Bisciola with whipped cream, coffee, or stick to tradition and soak it in grappa.  



Privacy Policy

© 2021 - Consorzio Turistico Media Valtellina - P.IVA 00824670145