I learned how to make Crostata and tasted it for the very first time last summer when I took a cooking class at Fairburn Farm here on Vancouver Island.
(Yes, I know my pie crust is wonky - I can cook - I can't craft)
When the chef Mara Jernigen told us were going to be making crostata, I pictured something savoury, confusing crostata with crostini.
People, this is why I make an interesting food blogger, I'm still learning myself.
But I'm blogging about crostata today because it's become my new favourite dessert.
Mostly because it requires no fancy ingredients or gadgets. It's just a straight forward recipe that's easy to prepare and turns out every time.
The crust is more like short bread than pie crust and is really not that finicky to work with.
Mind you, after making hundreds of pies in my life, I'm here to tell you that all the Martha Stewart pie related hype - "everything should be freezing cold," "don't overwork the crust" and yadda yadda - is really nothing but an alarmist fear tactic to keep would be bakers of the world in a state of crust making anxiety, thus causing us to buy Martha's magazines and cookbooks and watch her shows.
I like a good conspiracy theory.
For now though, I'm going to share a recipe for crostata with raspberry jam, but you could dump any old jam you like into the crust. I just happen to have a whole lot of homemade raspberry kicking around.
Serve with a big dollop of vanilla ice cream or whipping cream and I promise, you will be thanking me for weeks to come!
So happy cooking, happy living, and happy Friday!!
Onward to the recipe!
Raspberry Crostada (from Chef Mara Jernigen)
For the dough:
4 cups flour
1 1/4 cups sugar
1 tsp baking powder
1 cup butter, at room temperature
1/4 tsp vanilla extract
grated zest of a lemon
1/4 cup milk
2 cups raspberry jam
Combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl and cut in the butter until it resembles coarse corn meal. Mix the eggs, vanilla, zest, and milk together and slowly add to dough, blending until dough forms.
Flatten slightly, wrap in plastic and transfer to the fridge for at least two hours.
Once the dough has rested, remove from the fridge and wait 30 minutes to make it workable.
Don't stress about, though, like I said, this is very forgiving dough.
Preheat oven to 350.
Roll the dough to the desired thickness using flour to keep it from sticking.
Spread jam over the crust. Place a lattice of dough strips on top. Bake for about 40 minutes until golden brown.
It was delicious. The addition of the grated lemon zest makes the world of difference.