How to make Pastiera Napoletana (Neapolitan Wheat Berry and Ricotta Typical Easter Cake)
The Pastiera is the typical ricotta cheese tarte made in Naples during Easter time. It is a celebration of Spring and tastes in your mouth, you have to try it at least once in life. Here it my recipe. My friends from naples approved it and said it is really like their own one. The main features of this tarte, other than the ricotta cheese are the cooked wheat and the flavour of blossom (in Italian essenza di fiori d’arancio, which is the common name of the zagara flowers). If you take out one of theese ingredients it is not a Pastiera Napoletana, it is something else.
Below you will find the typical Pastiera napoletana recipe (with also the candied citron) and a variant made fro my husband, with chocolate drops without candied citron. Bear in mind that only the first one should be called “Pastiera” the other is just a chocolate ricotta tarte! 😀
Ingredients for a little pastiera of 22 cm:
- 350g shortcrust pastry
- 250g cooked wheat (we normally find it already cooked in the groceries, otherwise you have to cook the wheat in water and milk, without salt, until really soft and creamy)
- 250g ricotta
- 8 tbs milk
- 40g butter
- 200/180g sugar (depends on sweetness of the ricotta. the pastiera is a really sweet cake, but too much sweetnest is not good!)
- 3 eggs
for the classic Neapolitan Pastiera
- 1/2 tsp essence of blossom (aroma di fiori d’arancio)
- 1 tbs candied citron (25g)
forr the chocolate Pastiera
- flavour of orange, blossom or 2 tbs cointreau
- 1/2 cup chocolate drops
How to make Neapolitan Pastiera:
- Cook for about 10 min. the wheat with the milk, until it has thickened. Then add the butter.
- Meanwhile, work the ricotta with a whisk to make it more fine and creamy (the rule requires that you pass through a sieve to obtain a finer consistency, but I find the whisk more hasty and equally effective), add the sugar and continue to work it until get a cream.
- Add the eggs one at a time, then the aroma, the wheat and finally the candied fruit (or the chocolate chips).
- Roll out the shortcrust pastry into a sheet of about 3 mm and line the bottom and edges of a mold.
- Fill the mold with the filling, fold the edges of the pastry inside. If you wish, decorate with the characteristic shortbread lozenges. I am not skilled with the geometric decorations so I leave it open and forgive me for tearing the rule !!!!
- Bake at 180 degrees for 50/60 minutes (depends on how thick the filling layer is and on the oven.
- Let cool well before tasting.
You might also like other recipes with Ricotta cheese