CROSTATA AL CIOCCOLATO. I can proudly say that this is a family recipe. My family is half Umbrian, half Sicilian. Both regions have great food but when it comes to sweets there is no contest. Sicilians are blessed by the best sweets ever invented, cassata, cannoli, panzerotti, martorana, granita, pignolata….oh my.
Enter any humble bakery in Sicily and you will feel like in sugar heaven. Sicilians rarely make sweets at home because they can buy the best stuff in the world. And by the way, most of their sweets take days to make, so why bother.
We Umbrian peasants really can’t compete but we have one good thing, our crostata. We like it so much we eat it all the time. In addition it’s really easy and quick to make.
I don’t know who had this brilliant idea, but sometime when I was a kid, one of my Sicilian aunties living in Umbria came up with the idea of using the cannoli filling for a crostata. It was an instant success and adopted for all picnics and garden parties. Home-style fusion food, I just love it.
- 1 recipe crostata dough
- 250 gr / 8 ounces ricotta
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- 100 gr. / 2 and 1/2 ounces 70% dark chocolate
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon minced candied orange or citron peel
- orange blossom water (optional)
Chop chocolate in small cubes and stir into the ricotta, add all other ingredients and if desired 1/4 teaspoon of orange blossom water. Make sure to use good quality, flavorful candied peel which will contribute a characteristic citrus taste to the mixture. In the winter I make candied orange peel, it’s fantastic.
Prepare the tart as explained in the main crostata recipe using the ricotta filling instead of jam. Bake the crostata at 180° C/ 350° F for 45 minutes, or until the lattice is golden. Cool the crostata in the pan on a rack and serve.
Because of the soft cheese filling, you need to make this tart the same day you serve it otherwise the crust will soften.