Pizzelle from grandmother’s griddle
Forged over fire, a tradition lives on
TOPSFIELD - On a sunny Saturday earlier this month, Anthony Pascetta is working outside maneuvering a 10-pound cast-iron griddle with two-foot-long handles over flames in his gas grill. Fortunately, the weather obliges. The five-hour project produces about 10 dozen thin pizzelle, the waffle-like cookies that are an Italian tradition at Christmas. For the past three years, Pascetta, 53, a health teacher in Malden, has made the holiday treats, which he brings to his mother’s home in Highland Falls, N. Y. The cookies will be featured on holiday dessert platters on Christmas day and dozens will be given to family members. While most modern pizzelle irons are operated indoors and turn out round cookies, this one makes 3 1/2-by-7 inch rectangles. The iron dates back to 1938 and was made for his grandmother, Domenica Catalano, by a local blacksmith in San Valentino, her village in Abruzzi, Italy.