Loretta Sebastiani

Loretta Sebastiani
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Pecorino cheese puffs or salty puffs or bignè
( Bignè al pecorino )

Authentic Italian recipe of Rome

Pecorino cheese puffs (salty puffs or bignè in Italian) is a typical recipe of Rome (Lazio). Delicious appetizers made with ewe's cheese. You can taste them with a glass of a good Italian wine waiting for your lunch. What about to start your BBQ party with these tidbits? Remember: don't serve cheese in your dinner menu, especially when is formal.

difficulty: difficult

time: 55 minutes

calories: 430 (kCal)

Ingredients / Serves 4

  • 150g (5 1/2ounces) all-purpose flour
  • 3 eggs
  • 150g (5 1/2 ounces) grated Roman pecorino (sharp ewe's cheese)
  • 50g (1 3/4o ounce) unsalted butter
  • 1 tablespoon dried chives
  • 500ml (1 pint - 2 cups) water
  • Pinch of paprika
  • Extra virgin olive oil or peanut oil for frying
  • Salt
difficult recipe
preparation: 35 minutes
cooking: 20 minutes
total: 55 minutes
How many calories in a serving?
Calories: 430 (kcal) 22 % - 1799 (kJ)
Protein: 19.2 (g) 39 % GDA
Total fat: 26.8 (g) 39 % GDA
Total carbohydrate: 29.8 (g) 12 % GDA
Sugars: 1.5 (g) 2 % GDA

Download free PDF version (222 download).

Pecorino cheese puff recipe

Preparation and cooking

  • - Prepare savory puff dough.
    Put water and butter in a saucepan.
    Season to taste with salt and bring to the boil.
    Turn off the stove and sprinkle flour through a strainer slowly, beating with a whisk continuously.
    Turn on the stove again and stir continuously over a high heat until your mixture moves away from the saucepan sides.
    Turn off the stove and take away the saucepan from heat.
    Add eggs, one at a time, stirring, and then stir in cheese, paprika and chives.
  • - Fry pecorino puffs.
    Heat oil in a non-stick frying pan and pour in spoonfuls of your mixture.
    Remove your bignè with a skimming ladle and put them on absorbent kitchen paper to remove the excess of fat.

Just before serving

  • - Your pecorino puffs are ready to serve.
    Serve them hot.



  • - These pecorino puffs must be made at last minute and so you have to plan well.

Menu planning

  • - There are a lot of ways to serve pecorino puffs.
    In a meal, buffet-style
    In your happy hour (aperitivo time) at home, paired with a glass of wine or a cocktail.
    As finger food served to your guests waiting for sitting at table, BBQ party included.
    To complete an assorted antipasto platter of cold cuts.

Useful links for this recipe

Healthy eating

  • - It's very difficult to have the real amount of the oil used for frying.
    So nutrition facts don't include this ingredient. If you want to include this ingredient, you have to add about 100 kcal per 100g of this fried dish.


What's the right wine for " Pecorino cheese puffs or salty puffs or bignè "?

My husband and I knew Goccio (white wine from Sardinia) during a holiday in that fantastic isle and we think it is perfect to pair to these salty puffs.