La Crostata is one of those desserts that is found everywhere in Italy! When we last visited, it was present at every breakfast buffet we visited. It is so simple, but yet so tasty. I don’t know of anyone that doesn’t like it, do you?
My mom is a wonderful baker and all her Italian cakes are very genuine – no extra fluff – just pure goodness and made with everyday ingredients. I, on the other hand, have a love-hate relationship with cakes. I don’t like dealing with dough because, according to Mom, you have to feel the dough to know if there is enough flour or you need to add more! I, obviously, don’t have the “feel” of the dough and end up usually getting frustrated. But I decided to attempt my luck with this simple crostata. My mom gave me her directions, but always looking for an easier way, I decided to “you tube” it! They made it look so easy – just knead, chill, and roll it out with a rolling pin. On YouTube, it rolled out perfectly and they were able to put it into the baking pan so easily. “I can do that”, I thought. So I made my dough without difficulty (for once!), chilled it, and took it out after about 45 minutes. I began to roll it out with a rolling pin…and oh what a mess! It kept sticking to the rolling pin and I wasn’t getting anywhere! So, reluctantly, I decided to go back to Mom’s way of taking the dough and working it into the pan with your fingers. I covered the whole pan and the sides and made it look really pretty! And ….best of all, it was really easy! I have to admit it, but Mom was right! I guess Mom is always right 🙂 Maybe my daughters will agree!!
Crostata di Marmelata
1 cube butter, cut up
1 cup flour
2 egg yolks
1/2 cup sugar
1 1/2 tsp. baking powder
Dash of vanilla
1/2 jar jam
Mix altogether and form a dough ball. Cut off a little bit for the criss cross decorations on top.
Lay the rest out in a buttered pan with your fingers.
Spread the jam on top.
Make criss-cross decorations with the remainder of the dough.
Bake at 350 for about 25 minutes, or until golden.