16 June 2012

Time to make a Crostata

I don't know about you but, it's been a hectic time around our house these days, with all of the small  fruits starting to coming in full force and the weeds in the garden holding their own too. No shortage of jams to make and weeds to pull. I happened to have some ricotta the other day that seem destined to become something sweet to eat instead of its customary roles as a savory offering.   This a versatile easy recipe that works well with cherries and pears as well. I used pecora ricotta as it gives a bit more depth to the flavor, but regular cows ricotta will do fine. Make this soon and enjoy yet another way to get all that fruity goodness into a treat the whole family will love.

Apricot and Ricotta Crostata/ Crostata di Albicoche e Ricotta

Prepare your fruit first and set aside. 
Prepare your pasta frolla and refrigerate.
Finish your filling, roll out your pastry and assemble

Apricot and Ricotta Filling (Cherry or Pear is nice as well)

250 g ricotta
400 g. 3/4 lb of apricots, wash and pit
60 g/ 1/2 c. sugar
juice from 1/2 lemon,  just a touch of the grated peel or orange if preferred
2 T or a healthy splash amaretto if desired
pinch salt

Cut your apricots into small pieces. My apricots were small so I quartered them 
Add the sugarm lemon peel and amaretto
Set aside to absorb flavors. 
Adjust the amounts of sugar and lemon according to the tartness of your apricots or desired sweetness you prefer.

Once you have rolled out your pastry and placed in your prepared pan, add the ricotta to the fruit mixture and stir well. Add a pinch of salt to pull all the flavors together.
Fill your crust with the ricotta and fruit filling before placing pastry strips on top.

Pasta Frolla 
(also known as sweet short paste or cookie crust dough)
1-10" or 25 cm  crust with lattice 
Serves 8

For the pastry

350 g (approx 2 1/2c) flour, pastry or plain 
200 g (7 oz)butter, softened
125 g (2/3 c approx.) sugar, granulated
1 egg
1 egg yolk

Add sugar to the flour and mix .
Cut the butter into small is pieces and mix  together, lightly
Make a well in the middle of the dough.
Add eggs, and stir or mix well with your hands till it comes together in a dough and gingerly pull together into a smooth dough.
Divide into 2 flat disks, one larger than the other. 
Refrigerate for 15 minutes or so, especially if your butter is very soft, to make it easier to handle.
Roll out between lightly floured parchment paper for ease. 
Can be rolled with out paper, just make sure you keep lightly flouring and lifting and don’t let the dough get too warm.

Prepare a removable bottom tart or cake pan by greasing and flouring. 
Roll the larger disk out to beyond he edges of the bottom of the pan. Carefully lift and place in the tart pan allowing the edges to fall over the edges. 
Roll out the top portion in a slightly oblong fashion again about 1/2 inch beyond the edge of the pan. 
Cut into wide strips and lay across the top of the filled bottom crust, in a criss cross pattern, one direction and then the other, or weave the strips as you go from the center with and over and under method finishing on the outer edges. 
Trim and excess dough the might be hanging over and crimp edges of the strips to bottom crust, if necessary.
Brush top with egg wash, sprinkle with coarse sugar for a bit of sparkle and bake at 190*C / 350*F for about 25 minutes or until brown and bubbly.
Let cool till warm before cutting and serving. 


bellini said...

I should have know better than to one over here for a peak before breakfast. This crostata looks tempting, oh so tempting.

Bella Baita View said...

Thanks for being tempted and stopping by!

Chef Chuck said...

Hello, Your Crostata looks great, one of my favorites!
Love the garden, the soil looks nice and rich...
Thank you for sharing :)

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Bella Baita View said...

Dear anonymous thanky for your kid comments.

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