Cheese Pie (crostata Di Ricotta)

Ingredients & Directions

Crust-pasta frolla
2 c Unsifted all purpose; flour.
12 tb Lard or butter; at room
But not soft.
4 Egg yolks.
1/4 c Sugar.
3 tb Dry marsala wine.
1 ts Freshly grated lemon peel.
1/2 ts Salt.; ricotta filling
5 c Ricotta cheese.
1/2 c Sugar.
1 tb Flour.
1/2 ts Salt.
1 ts Vanilla extract.
1 ts Freshly grated orange; peel.
4 Egg yolks.
1 tb White raisins; rinsed and
1 tb Diced candied citron.
2 tb Slivered blanched almonds;
-or pine nuts.
1 Egg white mixed with 1;
-tablespoon water.

INSTRUCTIONS:PASTRY CRUST- In a large mixing bowl,make a well in the
center of two cups of flour.Drop into it the butter {or lard} ,egg
yolks,sugar, Marsala, lemon peel and salt.With your fingertips mix
the ingredients together,incorporating as much flour as you can.With
the heels of your hands,work in the rest of the flour until the dough
is smooth and can be gathered into a ball.Do not, however,knead the
dough or work it any more than necessary.{If you have an electric
mixer with a paddle attachment,all of the ingredients can be placed
in the bowl at once and mixed at low speed until they are just
combined.}The dough can be rolled out at once, but if it seems at all
oily,refrigerate it for about 1 hour,or until it is firm but not hard.

Pre-heat the oven to 350^.Break off about 1/4 of the dough,dust
lightly with flour and cover with wax paper or plastic wrap ;set
aside in the refrigerator.Reshape the rest of the dough into a ball
and place on a lightly floured board or pastry cloth.With the heel of
your hand,flatten the ball into a disc about 1 inch thick.Dust a
little flour over both sides of the disc to prevent the dough from
sticking,and begin rolling it out—starting from the center and
rolling to within an inch of the far edge.Gently lift the dough,turn
clockwise,and roll out again from the center to the far edge.Repeat
lifting,turning and rolling until the disc is about 1/8 inch thick
and at least 11 inches across.If the dough sticks to the board or
cloth while you are rolling it out,lift it gently with a wide metal
spatula and sprinkle a little flour under it.

Lightly butter the bottom and sides of a 9-by-11/2-inch spring-form or
false-bottom cake pan.Then,starting at the nearest edge of the
circle,lift the pastry and drape it over the rolling pin. Place the
pin in the middle of the buttered pan,and unfold the pastry over
it,leaving some slack in the center.Gently press the pastry into the
bottom and around the sides of the pan,taking care not to stretch
it.Roll the pin over the edge of the pan,pressing down hard to trim
off the excess pastry around the top.

Unwrap the remaining pastry,place it on a lightly floured board or
cloth,flattenit with the heel of your hand and roll it into a
rectangle about 12 inches long.With a pastry wheel or sharp knife,cut
the rectangle into long,even strips about 12 inch wide.

INSTRUCTIONS:RICOTTA FILLING – Combine the ricotta cheese with 1 2
cup of sugar,1 tablespoon flour,1 2 teaspoon salt,the vanilla,grated
orange peel and egg yolks,and beat until they are thoroughly
mixed.Stir in the raisins and the candied orange peel and
citron.Spoon this filling into the partially baked pastry
shell,spreading it evenly with a rubber spatula.Sprinkle the top with
slivered almonds or pine nuts,then weave or crisscross the pastry
strips across the pie to make a lattice design.Brush the strips
lightly with the egg-white -an d-water mixture.Bake on the middle
shelf of the oven for 1 to 1&1/4 ho urs,or until the crust is golden
and the filling is firm.

Remove the pie from the oven and slide off the outside the outside
rim of the pan.Cool the pie on a wire rack,leaving the bottom disc in
place.If you would prefer to remove the disc before serving the
pie,wait until the pie is cool,loosen the bottom crust with a wide
metal spatula, and carefully slide the pie off the disc onto a round
serving plate.

Fresh fruits like white grapes,served with crostata di ricotta,make a
tangy, sweet contrast to the richness of the pie. Crostata di ricotta
is one of the oldest Roman dishes.

1 servings

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