Three Cheese Macaroni

Comfort Food: Lasagna

BBQ Grilled Cheese

Pork Sandwiches

Apple Crostata

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The 2010 November Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Simona of briciole. She chose to challenge Daring Bakers’ to make pasta frolla for a crostata. She used her own experience as a source, as well as information from Pellegrino Artusi’s Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well.  I was excited about this challenge - not only because I wanted an excuse to buy a tart pan, but because I had just the filling to use (gasp! The filling isn't homemade!)  Actually, part of it is. Hold on a second.

I always have a really tough time with dough. No matter what it's for. My pie crust is always too thick and this dough wanted to split on me all the time. One day, I should lock myself in the kitchen and make dough after dough, until I get it right.

Anyways - to the challenge.


Pasta Frolla

Ingredients:

scant 3/4 cup of powdered sugar
1 and 3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
a pinch of salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
grated zest of half a lemon
1 large egg and 1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten in a small bowl

Making pasta frolla by hand:

Whisk together sugar, flour and salt in a bowl.  Rub or cut the butter into the flour until the mixture has the consistency of coarse crumbs. You can do this in the bowl or on your work surface, using your fingertips or an implement of choice.

Make a well in the center of the mounded flour and butter mixture and pour the beaten eggs into it (reserve about a teaspoon of the egg mixture for glazing purposes later on – place in the refrigerator, covered, until ready to use).

Add the lemon zest to your flour/butter/egg mixture.  Use a fork to incorporate the liquid into the solid ingredients, and then use your fingertips. Knead lightly just until the dough comes together into a ball.
Shape the dough into a flat disk and wrap in plastic wrap. Place the dough in the refrigerator and chill for at least two hours. You can refrigerate the dough overnight.
  
Making pasta frolla with a food processor:

Put sugar, flour, salt, and lemon zest in the food processor and pulse a few times to mix.
Add butter and pulse a few times, until the mixture has the consistency of coarse meal.
Empty food processor's bowl onto your work surface. See step 3 above and continue as explained in the following steps (minus the lemon zest, which you have already added).


For the Filling


This is where you get to be creative. I chose to use an apple filling from Stonewall Kitchen as well as my leftover apple/pear butter. It taste very sweet, but perfect for a light dessert.


As you can see from the photos, you'll need to roll the pastry dough out and place in a tart pan. It works well to fold the dough in half, once it's rolled out. Then to drag it over to your pan and lay evenly.  Press the edges in and cut the excess dough on the top. This isn't like an apple pie where you need to fancify the edges (thank goodness). 


Preheat your oven to 350*F.  Add your filling of choice and top with strips of dough, or cut outs using the leftover dough.  This is yet another way to get creative.  


Place the crostata on a baking sheet and bake for 40-45 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.  Let the crostata rest at room temperature before serving. 


You want the filling to settle a little so that it cuts very clean and smooth.




My farm yard crostata



2 comments:

Audax said...

WOW I love the farm scene on the crostata and the crust look fine to me even if think you have some problems with it. Lovely work on this challenge. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

November 27, 2010 at 3:06 AM
Alise said...

Thank you Audax. I always enjoy a good 'how can I make this look like a farm or cow' challenge. :)

November 29, 2010 at 8:50 PM

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