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sise de mòneche

‘nuns’ breasts’

Sise delle monache di Guardiagrele

Sise de mòneche or tette della monaca and breast-shaped brioches filled with pastry cream or chantilly, invented e by Clarissan nuns in Guardiagrele, Abruzzo, and Altamura, Puglia.

They are also known as tre monti in Abruzzo (for the Gran Sasso, Majella, and Monte Sirente) and sospiri (sighs) in Puglia, where the story goes the nuns baked them for the wedding of Lucrezia Borgia and the Count of Conversano in the early 16th century but the bride never showed up, so the guests ate them with little sighs.

Nor are they the only breast-shaped pastries in Italy, or even in Puglia: see minni di virgine, delizia al limone and bocca di dama salentine.


Desserts and pastries


Text © Dana Facaros & Michael Pauls

Image by Freegiampi