Cooking time
Serves12-15 people

Maritozzi are light and rich Roman buns, sticky and glossy on the outside and filled with sweet cream. In Italy men traditionally give maritozzi to their sweethearts during Lent as a sign of their love – and the thick layers of cream are a good place to hide a ring for the seriously romantic. We've popped jewel-bright raspberries in instead, which is more affordable and much more delicious.


  • 300ml full cream milk
  • 500g strong bread flour
  • 60g + 7 tbsp raw cane sugar
  • 10g dried yeast
  • 50g olive oil
  • 1 lemon, zest only
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 600ml double cream
  • A handful of raspberries, to serve

Prep: 25 mins + rising | Cook: 15 mins

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1. Pour 300ml milk into a small pan and heat it gently till lukewarm. Measure 100g flour, 60g sugar and 10g yeast into the bowl of a stand mixer (or a large mixing bowl, if working by hand). Pour in the warm milk and whisk together till combined. Cover the bowl with a tea towel and set aside for 20 mins.
2. After 20 mins, tip the remaining 400g flour into the mixing bowl. Add 50g olive oil, the finely grated zest of 1 lemon and the egg yolk. Sprinkle in a pinch of salt. If using a stand mixer, use a dough hook and mix on a medium speed for 15 mins. If you are kneading by hand, combine the ingredients into a dough and then transfer to a clean work top and knead really well. The finished dough should be smooth and elastic in texture, and not sticky. Pop the dough back into the bowl and cover it again. Set aside for 1 hr 30 mins, till the dough has risen and doubled in volume.
3. Warm your oven to 200°C/Fan 180°C/Gas 6. Line two large baking trays with greaseproof paper. Tip the risen dough onto a clean surface and divide into pieces roughly the size of a plum (you should get about 15 pieces). Roll each piece into a smooth ball and arrange on the baking trays, leaving an 8-10cm gap between each. Cover the trays and pop aside for about 30 mins, till each ball has doubled in volume.
4. When the buns have doubled, slide the trays into the oven. Bake for 15 mins, till the buns are deep brown in colour and well risen. If they still look a little light in colour, return the trays to the oven for 2-3 mins.
5. While the buns are baking, tip 4 tbsp sugar into a small pan. Add 4 tbsp cold water and swirl the pan to mix together. Pop the pan onto a medium heat and warm the sugar and water till the sugar has dissolved. As soon as the buns are out of the oven, brush the tops and sides with the warm syrup. Allow the buns to cool on the tray.
6. When the buns have cooled, pour 600ml double cream into a mixing bowl. Add 3 tbsp sugar and whisk the cream and sugar until it forms soft peaks. Slice most of the way through the cool buns and spoon in genourous amounts of cream. Use a butter knife or dough scraper to smooth the edges. Serve with fresh raspberries poked into the cream.
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