Lawrence Dallaglio's doughballs recipe

Lawrence Dallaglio
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Lawrence Dallaglio's doughballs recipe

I used to make these doughballs with my grandmother in Italy, then with my dad in London. Now it’s my son Enzo’s turn, and he loves making them. They’re dead easy to make and ready for the oven as soon as the dough is shaped into balls. Plus, they cook really fast, which is a bonus as far as Enzo’s concerned.

At a glance
  • Cuisine Italian
  • Recipe Type Starter
  • Difficulty Easy
  • Preparation time 30 mins
  • Cooking time 12 mins
  • Serves 4 people
  • 10 g (0.4oz) Fresh yeast
  • 300 g (10.6oz) Strong plain flour
  • 0.5 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Olive oil
  • 75 g (2.6oz) Softened butter
  • 1 Garlic clove, peeled and crushed
  • 1 tsp Each chopped parsley and chives


  1. Line a baking sheet with baking parchment. Put the yeast in a bowl and pour over 90ml lukewarm water.
  2. Sift the flour into a separate bowl, stir in the salt and make a well in the centre. Pour in the yeast mixture, followed by another 90ml lukewarm water and the oil. Mix with a knife, then get your hands in there and bring the mixture together. Put the dough on a board and knead well. Resist adding any more flour - it should be soft and sticky. Set aside for 30 mins to rise.
  3. Divide the dough into quarters, then divide each quarter into four or five pieces. Roll into small balls and place on the prepared baking sheet. Repeat with the remaining dough.
  4. Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C fan oven/gas mark 6. Bake for 10-12 mins until pale golden. The doughballs are ready when they sound hollow when tapped on the base.
  5. In a bowl, beat together the butter, garlic and herbs. Season well. Serve with the doughballs.

Recipe taken from My Italian Family Cookbook

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