The Magazine about Sorrento Peninsula
Categories Food

Traditional Pastiera Recipe

Queen Maria Theresa, the wife of Ferdinand II of Borboun, was always sulky. One day, to make her smile again, the king made her taste a delicious dessert. Which one? The pastiera, of which we are telling you the story and a recipe that you will be able to follow on your return from your holidays in Sorrento.

300 g of flour (10.5 oz)
150 g of lard (5.3 oz)
150 g of sugar (5.3 oz)
3 eggs

200 g of cooked wheat (7 oz)
5 eggs
40 cl of milk (13.5 fl oz)
80 ml of orange blossom water (3 fl oz)
2 lemons
150 g of candied cedar and orange rind (5.3 oz)
one tablespoon of lard
one sachet of vanilla
icing sugar

For the shortcrust pastry: make a well in the flour, pour lard, sugar and eggs in the centre. Add vanilla flavouring, half-an-orange grated rind, half-a-lemon grated rind, and a pinch of salt. Knead to a smooth dough, then put it in the fridge and leave it for an hour.
For the filling: cook the wheat with milk, lard, vanilla and sugar, until it looks mashed. Sift the ricotta cheese and mix it with 300 g of sugar (10.5 oz), add five egg yolks, three egg whites beaten to a firm froth, the grated rind of two lemons, orange blossom water and candied citrus cut into small pieces.
Once the wheat has cooled enough, mix it with ricotta cheese. Then, roll out the shortcrust pastry on an oil-paper sheet, flip it and use it to line a round baking tin greased with lard. Gently remove the oil-paper from the shortcrust pastry. Pour the filling into the baking tin, leaving a margin of 5 cm from the edge of the tin, then use the rest of the shortcrust pastry to form strips and place  them on the filling, arranging them in a grid pattern. Bake  at medium heat for about two hours. Finally, cool the pastiera and cover it with icing sugar.

Sorrento Style #1