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Savory Brutti Ma Buoni Recipe

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Savory Brutti Ma Buoni: A Deliciously Ugly Snack

In this week’s video recipe, Foodie Sisters in Italy, Valeria and Benedetta, prepare their family recipe for the savory version of classic Brutti ma Buoni cookies. Although the name means ugly but good, these cheese snacks are far more delicious than they appear and take just minutes to make.

Traditional brutti ma buoni are sweet cookies made with hazelnuts, egg whites, and sugar, commonly found in Rome and central Italy. This recipe mimics the appearance of the sweet version but uses savory ingredients to create tangy bites perfect for serving with a glass of wine for aperitivo.

The procedure is as simple as it gets: just throw all the ingredients into a bowl and mix into a dough. The addition of baking powder helps the mixture expand as it cooks, creating the appearance of the original. Weigh each cookie with a kitchen scale before baking to ensure they are all of uniform size and shape as they expand.

This recipe is a blank canvas. While delicious as is, you can personalize your ugly cookies by adding ingredients and flavors such as olives, sausage, pancetta, herbs, and spices to make them your own.

Savory Brutti Ma Buoni Recipe


  • 500g (17.6 oz) all-purpose flour
  • 100g (3.5 oz) Pecorino Romano, grated
  • 100g (3.5 oz) Parmigiano Reggiano, grated
  • 150ml (5.1 oz) extra virgin olive oil
  • 250g (8.8 oz) milk
  • 15g (0.5 oz) baking powder
  • Salt
  • Black pepper


  1. The first thing to remember is to set your oven to 200°C / 400°F.
  2. Combine all the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Season with a pinch of salt and a generous grind of black pepper.
  3. Pour in the milk and olive oil. Mix well with a spoon or spatula until the mixture forms a dough. Knead gently with your hands.
  4. Weigh the dough into pieces of about 12-15g each and shape them into balls with your hands.
  5. Place the balls onto a greased baking sheet and bake for approximately 20 minutes.

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