Neapolitan pastiera Authentic Italian recipes
Neapolitan pastiera is a traditional cake for Easter. Indeed this centuries-old dish is a tart with a shell of pastry enclosing a filling of ricotta, cooked wheat, candied fruit and sugar. A goodness! A feast for the eyes! This tasting ricotta tart was made, traditionally, for celebrating the return of fine season in Naples but you can cook it every time in the year as we actually do in Italy. Undoubtedly pastiera has many calories and fat. But once in a while ... Serve this delicious ricotta cake with arancino, a typical Italian liqueur. Interested in other Italian cakes and desserts? Look for other recipes.
Ingredienti / Dosi per 12
- 1 420g (14.8 ounces) can pre-cooked wheat grains
- 1 10g glass vial of orange-flower essence or "Millefiori" flavoring
- 250ml (8 1/2 fluid ounces - 1 cup) skimmed milk
- 180g (6 1/3 ounces) unsalted butter
- Grated rind of 1 orange or 1 lemon
- 550g (1.2 pound) ricotta cheese
- 7 eggs
- 590g (1.3 pound - 3 cups) sugar castor
- 1 teaspoon powdered vanilla
- 350g (12 1/3 ounces - 3 1/2 cups) all-purpose flour plus more for dusting
- Pinch of salt
- Icing sugar to garnish
- 100g (3 1/2 ounces) candied fruit
preparation: 60 minutes
cooking: 50 - 60 minutes
total: 2 hour
- Nutrition Facts (amount per serving):
Calories: 582 (kCal) 30 % GDA (*) - 2434 (kJ)
Protein: 13.3 (g) 18 % GDA
Total fat: 20.9 (g) 30 % GDA
Total carbohydrate: 88.1 (g) 33 % GDA
Sugars: 60.2 (g) 67 % GDA
Neapolitan pastiera recipe
Preparation and cooking
- - Prepare the short pastry necessary for Neapolitan pastiera.
- - Put the flour, 140g (5 ounces) sugar castor and salt on a work surface.
- - Make a well in the center and add 2 eggs and 140g (5 ounces) unsalted butter, cut into little pieces.
- - With your fingertips incorporate the flour into the eggs and butter.
You mustn't knead for a long time as generally is made preparing short pastry.
- - Cover the dough you've obtained with a napkin and allow to rest for at least 20-30 minutes.
- - Meanwhile prepare the filling for pastiera.
- - Pour the pre-cooked wheat grains into a saucepan with milk, 25g (1 ounce) butter and the rind of an orange or a lemon (what you prefer).
- - Cook over medium heat until creamy, stirring continuously.
- - With a hand mixer or a whisk, mix ricotta cheese, 450g (1 pound) sugar castor, 5 eggs, vanilla and orange-flower essence or "Millefiori" flavouring.
- - Combine with the grain mixture and fold in candied fruit, cubed.
- - Stir gently until creamy and smooth.
- - Preheat oven to 180° C (350° F).
- - Butter a baking pan (preferably with a detachable base) and line it with the pastry.
- - Keep a piece of pastry apart for decorating the tart surface.
- - Pour in the prepared mixture.
- - Decorate your pastiera with the remaining short pastry according to your fancy.
- - Bake for 50 - 60 minutes or until the surface is golden.
Just before serving
- - Let your pastiera cool in the baking pan before serving.
- - Sprinkle the surface of this ricotta tart with icing sugar (if liked).
- - The real essence for Neapolitan pastiera is "Millefiori" but, if you don't find it, you can use orange-flower essence too.
We remember you there are some packages on sale where you can find pre-cooked wheat grains and Millefiori essence.
- - You can prepare Neapolitan pastiera the day before.
- - If you have no time use ready-to-cook short pastry.
- - Some variants of the traditional recipe Neapolitan pastiera.
Someone replaces ricotta with pastry cream.
Some people use wheat, rice and barley in the stuffing.
- - The Neapolitan pastiera was the typical cake of spring and especially Easter. The fact is, however, that in the Naples area and all over Italy pastiera is prepared and eaten almost all year round.
- - Serve the Neapolitan pastiera as closing-course in a lunch or dinner menu but in a buffet party too. It 'a soft tart despite the pastry shell because the shell must be very thin and then you can cut pastiera even standing.
- - The Neapolitan pastiera is delicious but also very rich in calories, like almost the dishes of Neapolitan cuisine, which certainly are not short on the number and amount of ingredients. So it's not a cake to be included in your daily menu, but a tart for your special occasions.
- - Neapolitan pastiera is a very tasty ricotta tart. There are very few people who say no to a dessert after lunch or dinner, especially when people are out. But keep in mind that many sweets are the opposite of healthy eating.
So how do you? As usual, the equilibrium point is the salvation of each one of us.
In the daily menu, as guidelines for healthy eating recommend us, we have to prefer dry and baked cakes paying attention to the amount of sugar.
But if there is a special event (birthday party at home, ceremony, dinner with friends ...) let's enjoy our special cake. Once in a while, especially if you do exercise, the body can metabolize the calories, fats and sugars in excess.
What's the right wine for " Neapolitan pastiera " ?
Our suggestion is serving an arancino (orange-flavored liqueur) after eating Neapolitan pastiera.
A little history
- - Once Neapolitan people prepared pastiera with pasta. Have you understood why its name? ;))))