Sunday, June 16 2024

The pastiera is a Neapolitan pie typical of the Easter period and is composed of two disks of very crumbly shortcrust pastry thanks to  mouth-watering filling of ricotta, eggs and chocolate chips.

Pastiera is mainly served on Sundays as it is a hearty and very festive cake however it can also be enjoyed at various times of the day, perhaps at breakfast or snack time accompanied by a fragrant cup of tea.


 

 

 

 

 

SERVINGS:6

Crust:

  • 3 cups flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, softened
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • zest of 1 {organic} orange
  • 2 eggs
  • 2 egg yolks
  • {plus, one additional egg for brushing the top of the pie}

Filling:

  • 1 pound ricotta cheese {part skim, or whole milk}
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 3 eggs
  • 1/2 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips

Special Equipment: a 9″ springform pan, or deep-dish tart pan with a removable bottom.

 

 

 

VIDEO RECIPE:

 

METHOD

  1. Place the ricotta cheese in a colander, set over a bowl.
  2. Cover with plastic wrap & leave in the refrigerator to drain overnight.

To make the crust:

  1. Whisk together the flour, baking powder & salt in a mixing bowl. Set aside.
  2. Cream the butter & sugar together, in the bowl of an electric mixer, fitted with the paddle attachment, until light & fluffy {about 4 minutes}.
  3. Add the orange zest & beat for an additional minute.
  4. Add the egg yolks, then the whole eggs, beating after each addition & scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  5. With the mixer on low, slowly add the dry ingredients & beat until just combined.
  6. Dump the dough out onto a well-floured work surface & shape the dough into a ball.
  7. Divide the dough into two portions, one slightly bigger than the other.
  8. Shape into discs, wrap in plastic wrap & chill for 1 hour.

 

  1. Transfer the drained ricotta to a mixing bowl. Add the sugar & ground cinnamon; stir to combine.
  2. In a separate mixing bowl, beat the eggs lightly.
  3. Add them to the ricotta mixture & stir. Fold in the chocolate chips.

To assemble:

  1. Preheat the oven to 325 degrees. Take the larger of the two discs of dough & roll it out, on a well-floured work surface, into an 1/8″ thick round; carefully fit it into the springform pan.
  2. Cut away any overhang, fold over the edges & press neatly against the rim of the pan. Pour in the filling.
  3. Roll the second disc of dough out into another 1/8″ thick round.
  4. Using a knife, or a pizza wheel, cut the dough into 1/2″ thick strips.
  5. Arrange the strips over the top of the pie in a lattice pattern; brush the crust with a beaten egg.
  6. Bake for about one hour, or until the crust is golden brown & the filling is set.
  7. Let cool for 15 minutes, remove from the pan & transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

 

Note:

Once cool, the pie can be stored in the refrigerator for a few days. I like to serve this pie slightly chilled, by removing it from the refrigerator about a half hour before serving.

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