Italian Breakfast: Brioche and cappuccino!

Italian Breakfast: Brioche and cappuccino!

By 30/05/2012

What do you have for breakfast?

A typical Italian breakfast comes usually with something sweet, like biscuits, cakes, bread with jam, yogurt, sometimes cereals with coffee, tea or milk.

udine market square
Udine -Market Square

But what I would call the classic breakfast is cappuccino and croissant.

To me this is a treat. I know it might not be one of the most healthy breakfasts but I am in heaven when I can sink my teeth into a freshly made Italian cornetto and water it all down with a fluffy cappuccino.


Honestly, the pleasure is such that it makes for a better, happier morning! That's what food can do to you, it is so powerful to your senses. Surely caffeine must help too especially if you wake up in a really grumpy mood and we all do from time to time.

Italians sometimes can have just a quick espresso for breakfast. Just the lift you need to wake up. Everything looks better soon after, even your sight can improve, you will feel more "balanced", relaxed and normal. All good except for that "hole in your stomach" you get at mid-morning which urgently needs a sugar-fix to get you to lunch time.

Having lived in England for quite some time now I have learnt how to make porridge and I enjoy it most mornings, my children seem to like it too and I find I need nothing else until lunch time as oats are very nutritious and release energy slowly.

Italian croissants are different to the French ones. In fact they have a different name altogether. In the north they are called "brioches" and in the south of Italy "cornetti". They are softer and made with flour, sugar, butter and eggs, whereas the French ones are made without eggs.

Anyway talking about Italian cornetto, as I had some fresh yeast waiting in the fridge, I decided to try making my own.  I have added some cornflour to make them softer and some orange essence for extra flavour. They turned out ever so yummy.

The secret is in the rising. They need to rise twice and this will give them the typical softness of brioches. It is worth taking the effort into making them, a treat for all the family.
I loved them!

  • Prep Time : 4 hours 25 minutes
  • Cook Time : 15- 20 minutes



In a bowl melt the yeast with a little bit of tepid water. Add the cornflour, the flour, eggs, melted butter, white sugar, orange essence and salt. Stir all the ingredients in. Add some milk (at room temperature) only if the mixture is too dry.

Now take the dough out of the bowl and work it energetically with your hands for 10 minutes, if it is too sticky add a little bit of extra flour.
Put it back in the bowl and let it rest for 2 hours covered with a cloth in a warm place. It should double in size.

Dust your working top with some flour and work the dough for another 10 minutes.
Now shape it like a croissant and to do that you need to flatten the pastry with a rolling pin and with a knife cut some long triangles which you will roll inwards beginning from the base.

Lay the pastries on a baking tray on a sheet of baking paper, cover them up with a cloth and let them rest for another 2 hours. They will again double in size.

Beat an egg and with a spatula, gently  spread it on the brioches and sprinkle some brown sugar on top.

Cook in a hot oven at 180C for about 15 minutes until they are a nice brown colour. Please keep an eye on them because they colour very quickly!


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17 Responses to Italian Breakfast: Brioche and cappuccino!

  1. La cucina di Molly

    Che buoni questi cornetti, ti sono venuti benissimo! La mattina a colazione ci vuole sempre qualcosa di dolce per essere in forma durante la giornata…e cosa c'è di meglio di un cornetto e cappuccino!Ciao

  2. Gloria

    I want some brioche and capuchino, for me is perfect to breakfast!!!LOLI wanna try your recipe dear:))

  3. Petro Neagu

    Typically Italian! I love Italy, I always felt like home over there!Thanks for bringing back sweet memories, dear Alida 🙂

  4. laura

    cornetto e cappuccino evvai

  5. The View From The Table

    Oh Alida, these look fantastic. Not something I've ever considered making but I think that I just have to give them a go, you've made them sound so easy. I will report back with my efforts. Brioche and cappuccino, heaven, thank you for this lovely post!

  6. Pegasuslegend

    really calling me breads are my weakness wished I lived closer to you!

  7. Claudia

    Eccomi pronta per la colazione. Cornetti perfetti, ne prenderò più di uno ^_^Baci da me

  8. Dolcemeringa Ombretta

    Colazione con un buon cappuccino e brioche e' una cosa da fare!!!! Io me li concedo almeno due volte alla settimana e i tuoi cornetti fatti in casa li mangerei tutti i giorni!!! Baci

  9. Una Semplice Passione

    Queste foto e questa ricetta mi riportano direttamente in Italia. Che nostalgia vedendo questi cornetti! Dovro provarli a fare, grazie mille per questa idea meravigliosa! Un abbraccio

  10. Suchi

    We went to Venice a few weeks back and had just this for breakfast, it was ever so yum….I am not much of a coffee person but Venice got me addicted to cappuccinos…I started drinking about three cups a day and each and every place we had coffee from served awesome coffee…that said never thought of making Brioche at home…this is going to my want-to-try list…:-)

  11. Lenia

    this is the ideal breakfast!Complimentoni,carina!Un bacione forte!

  12. Javelin Warrior

    Alida, I'm so impressed you took the time to make these beautiful little rolls. I had no idea there was a difference between French and Italian croissants, so I learned something new today 🙂 Thanks so much for sharing…

  13. seanymph

    Ill have to try these one day. Reading about the typical Italian breakfast reminded me of going to San Francisco with a friend. We would spend the day there eating and shopping for goodies to bring home. We started our day in Little Italy section with cappuccino. 🙂 Shopped for all my fav Italian goodies then wandered over to Chinatown for Dim Sum for lunch. Shopped there for BBQ pork and things to bring home, then headed off to the wharf for a seafood dinner. And of course I had to bring home dungeness crab and sourdough. On the train back home my hands were filled with big shopping bags, I was tired but it was a grand day. I looked forward to that every yr. 🙂

  14. Catherine

    Dear Alida, This looks wonderful, simply wonderful.

  15. Rosita Vargas

    Para mi un desayuno perfecto es un deleite de todos los días,abrazos hugs,hugs.

  16. Choclette

    Wow, now those would make a most spectacular breakfast – as you say, a real treat. Our usual breakfast is toast on the run – usually eating it as I race down the road to catch the train. Although this is not the best way to eat breakfast, the toast is at least made from my rye sourdough. Yours sounds an awful lot yummier though!

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