November 27, 2010

Daring Bakers' November 2010 Challenge - Crostata

The 2010 November Daring Bakers’ challenge was hosted by Simona of briciole. She chose to challenge Daring Bakers’ to make pasta frolla for a crostata. She used her own experience as a source, as well as information from Pellegrino Artusi’s Science in the Kitchen and the Art of Eating Well.

The recipe and instructions can be found here.

I couldn't decide what flavour of crostata to make so I made three sweet variations and a savoury crostata.

Of course I had to have something with chocolate. So for my first crostata I made version 1 of the pasta frolla and substituted 30g of the sugar for cocoa powder and used orange zest instead of lemon zest. After blind baking it I lined the crust with orange segments and poured a ganache of chili-chocolate, cream and orange zest over it.

For the second crostata I made again version 1 of the pasta frolla using half vanilla sugar and half superfine sugar. Also, I added lime zest instead of lemon zest. I blind baked the crust and filled it with a mix of lime zest, lime juice, condensed milk and sour cream. For stability I added a little gelatine.

With the third crostata I went a bit experimental. I made another batch of version 1 of pasta frolla with half vanilla sugar and half superfine sugar, blind baked little crostatas (crostati? what's the plural of crostata?) and filled them with a mix of sour cream, goat cream cheese, honey, thyme, gelatine and whipped cream. After the filling had set I sliced up some figs and layered them on top, then drizzled everything with a little honey. They actually tasted great - although you have to like goat cheese to enjoy them. Also, I'd probably reduce the sugar in the crust a little as it was very sweet compared to the filling.

Goatcheese and Figs
After seeing all the delicious savoury versions that the other Daring Bakers made, I had to try one myself. I decided to make an onion-bacon-crostata. It's actually a dish that is quite common in many areas of Switzerland (Zwiebelwähe). I made version 1 of the pasta frolla, omitting the sugar and the lemon zest, but adding another pinch of salt (as it turned out, ideal would have been 3-4 pinches at least - but it was edible as it was).

For the filling I cut up loads of onions and sweated them in a little olive oil until they were tender. Added some fried bacon cubes and a little cumin and spread everything on the crust. I prepared a mix of sour cream, eggs, a little milk, salt and pepper and poured everything evenly on the onions. Then I topped everything with grated gruyère cheese and baked it until it was golden brown.

Goes great with a glass of white wine
This crostata tastes great when it's still warm, but can also be eaten cold the next day and it goes great with a glass of fruity white wine.

Thanks for a great challenge, Simona!


  1. You made so many types of crostate (the plural of crostata) I'm impressed with all of them but the chocolate one has my name on it. But the savoury one is superb. Great work on this challenge. Cheers from Audax in Sydney Australia.

  2. Wow, all of these crostate are impressive! The goat cheese one would be my favorite, but of course I'd have to try them all.

  3. SO many versions! So many delicious choices! Great job on this challenge!

  4. I am so impressed that you made so many flavors! I barely had time to get my one flavor together.

    That fig one sounds amaaazing!

  5. Wow!!!! so many variations!!!!!!!!!!!!!!1

  6. I really like all the different variations you made but espesially love you're savory one. Great job

  7. Oh my word - I wouldn't be able to decide on just one to try. They all look so scrummy!

  8. Your version with the goat cheese sounds delicious!

  9. From the comments, I notice that the goat's cheese and fig crostata is a winner. That's definitely my favourite too but all your tarts look really fantastic! One of each, please...

  10. wow! so many versions! i think my favourite would be the lime version.. but honestly, all your crostata look so delicious.. i like that your chocolate version has chili and orange twist!

  11. Just adore all the variety! So full of effort :-)

    My favorite is your chocolate crostata, I simply love the chocolate crust, luscious!!

  12. I am so glad the challenge sparked your creativity. You certainly ran with it. Everything you made looks and sounds wonderful.