Cucidati (Italian Fig Cookies)

Recipe by Kim D.
READY IN: 2hrs 15mins
YIELD: 36 cookies




  • For cookie dough, sift flour, baking powder, and salt into a large bowl.
  • Add sugar and stir well.
  • Cut in the shortening with a fork or pastry blender and work the mixture until it looks like corn meal.
  • In a bowl, beat egg, vanilla and milk together.
  • Add egg mixture to the flour mixture and mix with an electric mixer for about 3 minutes until well blended; dough will be soft.
  • (The original recipe says to knead the mixture for 5 minutes on a floured surface, but I find my Kitchen-Aid works great for this step!) Divide the dough into four pieces and wrap each piece with plastic wrap.
  • Refrigerate dough for 45 minutes.
  • To make the filling, grind figs, dates and raisins in a food processor until coarse.
  • (If you don't have a food processor, you can chop by hand until coarse) Place chopped figs, dates and raisins in a bowl.
  • Add remaining filling ingredients and mix well.
  • (Mixture will be thick) Set aside mixture.
  • Preheat oven to 375°F.
  • Work with one piece of dough at a time, leaving the other pieces of dough in the refrigerator until needed.
  • On a floured surface (I often use confectioner's sugar for rolling my dough), roll the dough to a 12-inch square.
  • Cut dough into 2X3-inch rectangles.
  • Spoon about 1 teaspoon of filling onto each rectangle.
  • Carefully fold the long edges over to meet in the center and pinch to seal seam.
  • Place each cookie, seam side down, on a baking sheet, making sure you leave at least 1-2 inches between each cookie.
  • Make 2 or 3 diagonal slits on the top of each cookie with a sharp knife.
  • Bake for about 12-15 minutes, or until cookies are golden in color.
  • Remove from oven and transfer cookies to a wire rack to cool.
  • For icing, place confectioner's sugar in a bowl.
  • Add just a little water or milk, until you get a smooth consistency- but not runny!
  • Ice the tops of each cookie and sprinkle with colored sprinkle.
  • Let icing dry completely before stacking!
  • Store in air-tight containers up to 2 weeks.


@Kim D.
“This is my favorite Cucidati recipe!!! These cookies are a little time consuming, but well worth the effort! It wouldn't be Christmas in our house without them. I make them every year, often doubling the recipe! I can't remember how many cookies this recipe makes, and often they disappear before I can start counting! (Prep time includes chilling time)”