Tuscan Ricotta Tart with Peaches. I’ve met so many incredibly talented and lovely people through Instagram. That’s where I first found Giulia Scarpaleggia (and her website Jul’s Kitchen), who lives and cooks in Tuscany. Her food is gorgeous and when she told me she had a cookbook coming out, I couldn’t wait to see it. The book is a beautiful guide to the Markets of Tuscany and the recipes they inspire, including this fresh ricotta tart (I added the peaches for a summer twist). The flavors are a classic combination from this region. I adore the food, the people, the terrain, the wine and the sweets of Tuscany. I’ve often fantasized about moving abroad and the Italian countryside is always first on the list.
This ricotta tart, caught my eye when I was flipping through the pages of Giulia’s book. Her tart, which she calls, Torta Squisita “exquisite cake”, is made with ricotta (I made it from scratch, which is so easy), chocolate, candied orange peel and a star anise flavored liqueur. It is quintessentially Italian. I happened to have some juicy, perfectly ripe peaches sitting on the counter, so I decided to top the tart with them. It is super tasty and an ode to summer, but it would be just as good without the peaches, served with a strong cup of coffee.
- 2/3 cup (150g) unsalted butter, room temperature
- 3/4 cup (150g) sugar
- 1 large egg
- 2 1/3 cups (300g) all-purpose flour
- zest of 1 lemon
- Pinch salt
- 1 2/3 cups (400g) ricotta cheese
- 1/2 cup (100g) sugar
- 3 large eggs
- 5 oz (150g) dark chocolate roughly chopped
- 3 1/2 oz (100g) candied orange zest I used the zest of 1/2 a grapefruit
- 1/4 cup Sassolino liqueur or Strega or Vinsanto (anise flavored liqueur)
- 3 peaches peeled, pitted and cut into thin sectioned (optional)
- Mix the butter and sugar until well combined in a stand mixer fitted with a paddle attachment. Add the egg. Incorporate the flour, zest, and salt. Mix until just combined. Press into a disk, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least an hour.
- Roll out the dough and fit to a Fluted Tart Pan, 10 Inches by 2 Inches, freeze the tart shell until ready to fill.
- Preheat oven to 400°F.
- Combine the ricotta (here’s a super easy recipe to make your own!) with the eggs and sugar. Add the zest, chocolate and liqueur. Pour the filling into the prepared tart shell. Top with sliced peaches. Bake for about 50-55 minutes or until the ricotta filling is set and caramelized.
- Allow the tart to cool in the pan for about 30 minutes, then remove from pan and cool completely before refrigerating. Serve cool or at room temperature.