Pettole (pèttëlë in Apulian dialect, zeppole in Irpinia, scorpelle in San Severo, pèttuli in Brindisi, pittule in Lecce, pètt’l in Matera, pèttule in the Potentino area) are very soft balls of yeast dough fried in hot oil, typical of Puglia, Campania and Basilicata regions.
They can be salty or sweet, plain or stuffed, and are often used instead of bread, or as an appetizer. All the variations are made using Flour, Potato, Yeast, Water and Salt, but there is also a simpler version that does not need the Potato and in any case the dough should be fairly smooth to be able to pour into the oil without obtaining a solid block that has to be drenched in oil. The shape can be that of a small ball or a donut, as is the tradition of Ferrandina, Bernalda, Salandra and Pomarico.
The typical recipe for pettole used in Taranto is sprinkled with sugar, but also with salt. In other areas of the region pettole are covered and cooked with Fig Wine or Honey, but if you want you can fill them with small pieces of boiled Cod, salted anchovy or with an half-cooked Cabbage Broccoli.