Thursday, January 8, 2009

Christ's Diapers

This coming Sunday the Christmas season will come to a close as we celebrate the Feast of the Baptism of The Lord.

In her cookbook A Continual Feast, author Evelyn Birge Vitz shares a recipe for making a special treat called Christ's Diapers (Diples). She tells us that, "Diples are "folds" in Greek. These cookies are sometimes shaped in bowknots or other fancy shapes, but for Christmas they are made in a shape suggestive of the swaddling clothes—or actually the diapers!—of the infant Jesus." Even though our Lord was grown when he was baptized by St. John the Baptist, the sacrament of baptism reminds us of infancy. In addition, this feast closes the Christmas season, making these a perfect treat to serve on this special feast.

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Christ's Diapers (Greek Diples)

  • 6 eggs
  • 3 1/2 cups flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1/2 cup olive oil
  • Grated rind of 1 orange
  • Vegetable Oil or shortening for deep frying
  • 1/2 cup honey
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • Chopped pistachio nuts (*I plan on substituting Pecans)
  • Confectioners' sugar


With an electric beater, beat the eggs until light and fluffy.

Sift together the flour, salt, and baking powder. Gradually stir the flour into the eggs.

Turn the dough onto an unfloured board. Add the olive oil, a little at a time, and the grated orange rind. Knead the dough until it is smooth—about 10 minutes.

Roll the dough out paper thin on a well-floured board. Cut it into squares about 1 1/2 inches across. Fold these into triangles, then join the ends to form diapers. Press the corners together gently but firmly. (If you don't press the corners well, the diapers will come undone!)

Drop the diapers, a few at a time, into hot fat (360º-370º F. on a deep-fat-frying thermometer). Turn once or twice and fry until golden brown. Drain thoroughly on paper towels.

Bring the honey and water slowly to a boil in a saucepan. Stir in the cinnamon and lemon juice. Reduce heat and simmer for 1 or 2 minutes.

Dribble the honey syrup over the diapers, and sprinkle them with chopped pistachios, then with confectioners sugar.

When the diapers are fully dry, pack them in a tin and cover tightly. These keep well, if well covered.

Yield: about 4 dozen

I am looking forward to trying out the recipe this coming weekend. Don't they sound delicious?!

I hope you all had a blessed Christmas and New Year's,
and that you are able to enjoy these last few days of the Christmas season!

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  1. Those DO sound delicious! You are SO ambitious!!

  2. I just made these...and they are yummy and make a lot!! However, I had them all on wax paper when I drizzled the syrup....a lot of it ended up on the paper and the nuts didn't really stick to them. So when I put them in the containers I swiped more of the sauce and nuts off the paper and sprinkled over them again...just not sure if I did something wrong....but they are still good!! thanks!

  3. Update: everyone enjoyed them and got a big laugh at saying we were eating Christ's diapers.

  4. Your blog is absolutely fabulous! Nothing like this in Europe! Many Christmas Blessings from Austria!