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Pan dei Morti (Dead's Bread)

Updated: Oct 24, 2021

Between the end of October and the end of November, it is very common to spot in the windows of Pastry Shops and Bakeries in Milan a very particular cookie. With an elongated shape, made with dry Amaretti biscuits, cocoa and pine nuts, the "Pan dei Morti", is a traditional delicacy usually prepared for the All Saints' Day and the Day of the Dead.

​Difficulty level:

Cooking Time:

15 minutes

Oven Temperature:


Cooking Method:

Fan oven

Ingredients for 24 pieces:

  • 500g Italian Amaretti

  • 250g All Purpose Flour 00

  • 300g Caster Sugar

  • 20g Cocoa Powder

  • 120g Raisins

  • 120g Dried Figs

  • 50g Almonds

  • 50g Pine Nuts

  • 8g Baking Powder

  • 2g Cinnamon powder

  • 4 Egg Whites

  • 100ml Vin Santo (or Marsala)

  • Edible Wafer Paper (optional)

  • Icing sugar for dusting

Using the edible wafer paper is optional, but it will give a nice final touch to the cookie and will make them easier to move once cooked.


  1. Soak the raisins in warm water for about 1 hour

  2. Put the almonds in boiling water for about 30 seconds to remove the peel and then roughly chop them.

  3. Roughly chop the dried figs.

  4. Crush the Amaretti biscuits to reduce them to powder, and add them to the flour.

  5. Add the baking powder, the cinnamon, the sugar, and mix.

  6. Drain the raisins.

  7. Add the raisins, the dried figs, and the almonds to the dry ingredients.

  8. Mix well.

  9. Add the egg whites and start kneading.

  10. Gradually add the wine, until the mixture is smooth and fairly soft.

  11. Let the dough rest for about an hour.

  12. Prepare the cookies giving them an oval shape with pointed ends and arrange them on the edible wafer paper before moving on the baking sheet.

  13. Preheat the oven to 180˚C.

  14. Bake the bread and let it cook for about 15 minutes.

  15. Once cooked let it cool on a wire rack.

  16. Serve cold, dusted with icing sugar.

Add 50g of candied orange zest, 50g of chocolate chips and 50g of hazelnuts to the mixture to get an excellent and rich Christmas cookie.

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