Written by Katie Parla on September 20, 2009


The first three things I consume upon arrival in Naples: a sfogliatella, an espresso, and a pizza margherita, usually in that order. The first item in this holy trinity of Neapolitan gastronomic treats is a pastry I used to eat as a kid growing up in New Jersey (where we say “sfil-ya-del”, an Italian immigrant pronunciation in the same spirit as “pruh-shoot” for prosciutto and “ruh-got” for ricotta). This pastry takes two forms: riccia (pictured above) and frolla. The former looks like a lobster tail and is made from crispy pastry leaves, while the latter is made with a sort of short bread crust. In both cases, the filling is a mixture of ricotta, cinnamon, sugar, egg, and candied lemon zest. Served hot so the filling and crust seem to melt together. For Neapolitans it is a classic breakfast pastry, while I use it more as an appetizer before even more carbs. Here are some of my favorite places to pick up sfogliatelle in Naples.

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