Thursday, March 10, 2011

Torta tal-Rikotta u Lewż (Ricotta and Almond Pie)

"Ricotta and Almond Pie." Carmen translated the title from Maltese for me. Ricotta in a pie. Would it taste like cannoli? Or like cheese cake? I envisioned a pie with pale off-white and tan tones, accented with the brown edges of the almond skins. While still not comfortable with the time involved in making dough, I was excited to try this pie crust recipe, since it has ground almonds in it.

Imagine my surprise when I added "2 tablespoons of cocoa" and the whole thing changed to a light shade of brown. Not until then did I realized that this recipe is actually for a Chocolate Ricotta and Almond Pie. So much for shades of off-white. I stored the following links to consult and attempt next time.

Food Network - Maria's Pastry Shop
Food & Wine - Cesare Casella


Chocolate Ricotta and Almond Pie

Pie Crust
1/2 cup finely chopped almonds
1 cup flour
1/4cup sugar
pinch salt
5 tbsp butter, softened [Thao – I pulled it straight from the fridge, placed it between two pieces of parchment paper and flattened it with a rolling pin to soften it]
1 tbsp water

Combine the almonds with the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl. Rub in the softened butter. Add the water. Wrap and refrigerate dough for 1 hour. Roll out and arrange in pie pan. Refrigerate again for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Bake for 10 minutes. Allow to cool completely.

2 eggs, separated
2 oz (1/3 - 1/2 cup) almonds, chopped
3 1/2 oz (7 tbsp) sugar
2 tbsp cocoa
lemon zest [If desired, try adding 1 1/2 tbsp of lemon juice]
7 oz (about 3/4 cup) ricotta
6 drops (1/2 tspn) of almond essence [extract is more concentrated than essence]
3/4 cups sliced almonds

Preheat oven to 350°.

In a small bowl, beat the egg whites. In a large bowl, beat the egg yolks. Add the almonds to the egg yolks and mix. Follow with the beaten egg whites. Add the sugar, cocoa and lemon zest. Beat in the ricotta and almond extract. Fill in the pie crust.

Bake for 30-45 minutes.
Toast sliced almonds in pan on medium heat until lightly browned.
When pie is finished baking, top with toasted almonds.


Debrief: Double the filling. Measure pan since I always seem a little shy of the amount of pie crust needed. Be sure to add pan sizes and yields to recipes.

1 comment:

  1. I'm typing this quick note to let you know I'm just heading downstairs to throw away all my cookbooks. I just need this blog and I'm set. Lovely photo, as always.