Renowned local chef Anton B Dougall has just released his latest cookbook, A Sweet Taste of Malta, this time celebrating a delicious range of typical Maltese sweets, pastries and desserts.
The hardbound book, which is peppered with beautiful photography that accompanies every recipe, also marks 45 years since Chef Dougall launched his cooking club and TV programme, Klabb tat-Tisjir.
“It’s always been my long-standing wish to write a book about Maltese sweets,” says Mr Dougall, who has already published more than 50 cookery books. “There are actually a number of serious limitations when it comes to Maltese sweets, especially as they’re so heavily influenced by desserts from southern Italian, Sicilian and Arabic cuisine. Thus, this collection features both ‘authentic’ Maltese sweets, as well as others that have become Maltese through their popularity.”
The book, which is 160 pages long, features a vast variety of sweet treats, including pies, biscuits, tarts, cakes, ice creams and jams. It also features a unique run down of the islands’ confectionery calendar, covering key dates such as Carnival, Lent, Easter, Christmas and other feasts.
“A Sweet Taste of Malta clearly highlights the Maltese sweet tooth, as well as our penchant for sweet pastry, chocolate and almonds,” continues Mr Dougall. “Most sweets are linked to a special occasion, such as qagħaq tal-appostli (a ringed loaf with nuts) in Lent, zeppole (honey sprinkled choux pastry) to mark the feast of St Joseph, and St Martin’s buns over San Martin. All of these wonderful delicacies are part of our culture, and this new book is a vivid celebration of that.”
“I hope it will encourage both locals and foreigners to try their hands at creating these delicious recipes. You’re also just in time to try our Christmas Xkumvat (festive fritters) and ħobż ta’ San Nikola (St Nicholas’s Bread)!”
A Sweet Taste of Malta, which is published by Klabb tat-Tisjir and distributed by BDL, is available in most book shops.