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Neapolitan Ricotta Tart
Neapolitan Ricotta Tart
(Pastiera Napoletana)
 

This recipe comes from the Cappuccino Convent at Amalfi.
 
 
Ingredients:
 
For the Pastry:
8 oz (225 grams) unsalted butter
6 oz (175 grams) caster sugar
4 egg yolks
1 lb (450 grams) plain white or Italian type 00 flour

For the Filling:
1 lb (450 grams) ricotta cheese
4 oz (100 grams) caster or superfine sugar
1 teaspoon (5 ml) ground cinnamon
Grated zest and juice of 1 unwaxed lemon
4 tbs (60 ml) orange flower water
4 oz (100 grams) candied orange or mixed peel
1 large egg, separated
1 pint (550 ml) milk
4 oz (100 grams) vermicelli pasta
Large pinch of salt
Icing sugar, for dusting (optional)
 
Directions:
 
Prepare the Pastry:
Put the butter and sugar in a bowl and cream together.
 
Add the egg yolks and then gradually add the flour, mixing well to make a soft dough.
 
Wrap in greaseproof paper and chill in the fridge for 30 minutes.

Prepare the Filling:
Put the ricotta cheese, the sugar, reserving just 2 tbs (30 ml), the cinnamon, half the lemon zest, the lemon juice, orange flower water, candied peel, and the egg yolk in a bowl and beat together.

In a small saucepan, bring the milk to a boil, add the vermicelli pasta, the remaining 2 tbs (30 ml) sugar, the remaining lemon zest and the salt and simmer gently until the vermicelli has absorbed all the milk.
 
Whilst still warm, blend the pasta carefully into the ricotta mixture.

Whisk the egg white until it just holds its shape, then fold into the mixture.

Preheat the oven to 375 F (190 C).

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry and use two-thirds to line an 11 inch (28 cm) loose-bottomed flan tin.

Add the ricotta filling.
 
Cut the remaining pastry into strips and arrange in a lattice pattern on top of the tart.

Bake in the oven for 40-50 minutes until golden.
 
Dust with sifted icing sugar before serving warm or cold (optional). Serves 10.
 
That's it!
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