Traditional festive cakes recipes

Since the Xmas holidays are over, we decided to share few old traditional recipes for cakes and cookies we love to make at this time of the year. One of the most interesting inherited things from my grandma Nena (family Tartaglia, one of the oldest families in Split) were two notebooks with old recipes. They are more than 110 years old notebooks with all kinds of delicacies. From generation to generation, we prepare pretty much always the same cakes and I would like you to have a few of my favorite recipes.

There was no Christmas without Dates cake (and I don’t really know why we bake it only for Christmas). Very simple but very sweet…

  Traditional date cake


Dates cake

180 g dates
200 g almonds
80 g bitter chocolate, melted
9 whipped egg whites
1 vanilla sugar

Finely chop almonds and dates. Mix with chocolate and vanilla sugar. Slowly add eggwhites.
Bake on the low temperature till the crust is made on top.
When cold, coat the cake with apricot marmalade.


  Pandoleti recipe

Another simple recipe is for cookies Pandoleti, wonderful biscuits, dry type and crunchy, well known in every traditional Dalmatian house. They were prepared mainly for the holidays, birthdays, and weddings. It is also the dessert which was usually made to greet the guests as this fine cookie is really easy to make and can stand in a box for quite a long time.
The best thing about Pandoleti is that they are served with rakija (grappa). Simply dip the cookie in rakija (avoid rakija near kids J ).
If you are not a fan of rakija you can always serve it with coffee or tea.


4 eggs (divide white and yellow; whip eggwhite)
200 g sugar
200 g flour
100 g almonds
arancini – candied orange peel – as much as you have

Leave almonds and arancini in one piece (do not chop) and mix all ingredients together. Form rolls.
Bake 25 minutes/190C. Cut it while it is still hot.



As those previous 2 recipes are not for those on a restricted diet, we have another suggestion for a gluten-free cake. You can call this one a healthy natural power bar.

  Wallnut balls 

Dried figs and walnut balls


150 g walnut
150 g dried figs
1 squeezed orange juice
1 orange zest

Place the chopped dried figs and nuts, orange juice, and zest in a bowl. Mix well. If desired, you can even use a chopstick blender. Just a 3-4 times short zvrr, zvrr and that’s it! There will be small pieces to chew but we prefer it that way. If you want it all the more homogeneous chop more. Form small balls or bars.


Dobar tek!



  Bakina tekica