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The Oldest Christmas Sweet that you have never heard about it

The fristingo (or frustingo) is a typical Le Marche cake made with dried fruit and figs; In the Ascoli Piceno area is said fruštìnghë, in the Fermo area frustingu, frostengo in Macerata and in the Pesaro area Bostrengo.

Source of the photo:

The frustingo is the oldest Christmas sweet, older than the Christmas itself. The recipe over two thousand years ago, has passed from the Etruscan hands to those of Picentes. The frustingo was then a poor bread and hearty, appreciated by the Romans, who called panis Picentinus.

Till some decades ago was the only Christmas sweet  in the countryside. Vino Cotto, dried figs, dried grapes (raisins) and nuts were available, things that today are expensive treats.

The ancient recipe is evolved and nowadays every family has its own recipe that counts also exotic ingredients such as chocolate, sugar and coffee!

This is not a a sweet loved by dietologists but it is wheat free and gluten free.

Here the Recipe


  • 1 kg. dried black figs
  • 500 gr chopped mixed nuts (pine nuts, almonds and walnuts)
  • 200 grams of vino cotto (or Marsala or even tokai)
  • 200 gr raisins
  • 1 about 4-5 espresso cups
  • 150 gr corn flour
  • breadcrumb 1 tablespoon
  • 100 gr cocoa powder
  • 100 gr dark chocolate, chopped fine
  • 200 gr white sugar
  • 1 wine glass dark rum or whiskey
  • 200gr extra virgin olive oil
  • Grated zest of 1 lemon
  • ½ glass of orange juice
  • Pinch of nutmeg
  • Pinch of cinnamon


Chop the dried figs and cook them in the 200gr of vino cotto and enough water and leaving them rest overnight.

Mix well all the ingredients together  in a large bowl with a wooden spoon, adding the breadcrumb and the corn flour last. Leave the mix to rest for one hour.

Add extra virgin olive oil little to mix and put the frustingo in an oven pan

Cook in two buttered  loaf pans it in a preheated oven at 180°c for half hour until it looks golden.

Let it cool down and serve it sliced with a glass of Vino Cotto.

Buon Natale

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