The word rousquille comes from the Spanish word ‘rosquilla’ meaning ‘little wheel’. Traditionally flavoured with aniseed and orange blossom, this medieval speciality started off with a biscuit texture, but has been developed over the years to become more of a cake than a biscuit.
Speciality of the Vallespir
They are very much a speciality of the Vallespir villages, and the addition of the sweet meringue glaze was actually the invention of Amélie-Les-Bains baker, Robert Seguela in 1810, to keep the rousquille moist inside. Poured on and smoothed over by hand in artisan bakeries, the glaze fills up the hole in the middle.
The rousquille rings used to be fried on long thin sticks called ‘rosquillare’ that street vendors carried on their shoulders, and sold in the streets at fairs and markets, or held up to windows for people to reach down and help themselves.
Traditionally accompanied by Muscat, Banyuls or any Roussillon dessert wine, they also go down rather well with a cup of tea!