Sweet Potato Cjalsons

Appetizer, Dried Fruit, Italian, Potato, Tutorial, Vegetarian, Whole Wheat

Dear Fran,

I am very happy to have accepted to take on Rosella’s (of http://machetiseimangiato.com) challenge to prepare Cjalsons. As I did not participate in the Pierogi or Varenikes Daring Cooks challenge, I could not really fathom the deliciousness and satisfaction these work-intensive little dumplings can bring.

Rosella was inspired to host a challenge celebrating the Friuli culture came from reading the biography of Gianni Cosetti (http://tinyurl.com/29cs5xe), who worked hard to defend local traditions and products.

Cjalsons are a traditional dish of Fruili Venezia Giulia, a region located in the North-East of Italy. They are a type of large ravioli that have been adapted to local tastes and ingredients. They are typically boiled and then quickly pan fried. When looking a little bit deeper into the matter I noticed that you can either eat them like that, or add them to soup.

Rosella provided us with 6 recipes to chose from, and it was very hard to pick a favorite. The variety and intriguing combinations of ingredients made this so tough. Finally, I decided that I would chose the 2nd one. It sounded really interesting and with a slight Matinizing-spin, it might be a definite winner 🙂

Lately I have really been into the idea of a sweet potato and pumpkin soup, so I thought these could be great to make until I whipped up such a soup! The original recipe called for regular potatoes on the inside, I substituted with beautiful orange sweet potatoes. I also switched the plain flour for whole wheat flour, to give a little something wholesome to the dumpling dough, which I would never get if I were to order them in a restaurant. And switched some of the white sugar for brown sugar to really depend the caramelized taste on the inside of this dumpling.

The result was very intriguing and delicious. You have to know that your taste buds will be surprised by the flavor combinations. You have to prepare them for a taste that is sweet with a kick of saltiness, in the form of a food that you have only ever known as salty (ravioli/tortelini/pierogi/varenikes). The final touch of sprinkling salt and sugar on the finished cjalsons is really the best part, they form a very very thin caramel coat, which really makes the flavors pop! Also, as tested the next day… AMAZING in a sweet potato and pumpkin soup!

Cjalsòns Krofin di Timau

Agnolotti di Timau – Original Typical Recipe

Time: 60 minutes


For the dough:

  • 250 gr wholewheat flour
  • Lukewarm water
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 egg to brush

For the filling :

  • 300 gr sweet potatoes
  • 1 onion
  • 50 gr butter
  • 1/2 tbsp cinnamon
  • 100 gr dried currants
  • 70 gr refined sugar
  • 30 gr dark brown sugar
  • A pinch of salt and pepper
  • A pinch of dried mint

For the dressing :

  • 80 gr butter


  1. Prepare the dough mixing the flour with water and salt, then let it rest for about 20 minutes.
  2. To make the filling boil the potatoes, mash and mix them with the onion. Sauté butter with lemon zest, raisins, sugar, mint, cinnamon. Add salt and pepper.
  3. Roll out the dough with a rolling pin, cut discs with a diameter of 7 cm. On each disc put a tablespoon of filling.
  4. Brush the discs with well beaten egg, fold them in half and close them by pressing the edges well.
  5. Place the Cjalsons in boiling salted water, then take them out with a slotted spoon when they come to the surface. Transfer them to a hot pan and then toss with melted butter, a pinch of cinnamon and a little bit of sugar.

2 thoughts on “Sweet Potato Cjalsons

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