Crostata.. what a beautiful word...
It reminds me of something rough, and traditional, and most of all, the name itself sounds delish.
Crostata is basically Italian tarts. One that's traditionally made without the tart tin. And are often filled with pastry cream and fruits; but it can really be filled with anything you fancy.
Dairy-Free Pasta Frolla
90 g Powdered Sugar
235 g All-purpose flour
A pinch of salt
115 g Vegetable Shortening (Cold)
Grated zest of half a lemon
1 large egg and 1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten in a small bowl
Making Pastry by hand:
1. Whisk together sugar, flour and salt in a bowl.
2. Rub the shortening 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.
3. 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).
4. Add the lemon zest to your flour/butter/egg mixture.
5. Use a fork to incorporate the liquid into the solid ingredients, and then use your fingertips.
6. Knead lightly just until the dough comes together into a ball.
7. 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.
3 Small Plums, stoned and sliced
Zest of Half a lemon
Juice of Half a lemon
1 tbsp Sugar
Mix all the ingredients together. Cover with clingfilm and refrigerate until ready to use.
Filling (Cinnamon Apple)
2 Apples, peeled and sliced
1 tsp Cinnamon
1 tbsp Sugar
Mix all together. (I would not recommend making this too far ahead of time, to prevent the apples from browning before they're ready to be used.)
(Makes 8 small (palm-sized) crostata)
1. Preheat oven to 180°C.
2. Divide the dough evenly into eight (8).
3. To help roll the crostata dough, keep the dough in between two plastic wrap, or a large enough plastic bag. This can help rolling the dough and can seriously reduce the mess (and save flour. =P)
4. Roll the dough into roughly a circle.
5. Transfer to baking sheet.
6. Brush with eggwash.
7. Scoop in some of the filling, making sure there's at least 1 inch margin to allow the dough to be folded over.
8. Fold in the edges to create a pocket-like look. (This not only looks pretty, but keeps the juice in as well.)
9. Bake for 15 minutes or until golden brown. (Do keep an eye on the oven, you don't want to burn them.>.<)
10. Breath in the gorgeous smell of your crostata.
11. Tuck in using your fingers. (If you want to appear at least a bit civilised, I'd say use a fork.)