Crostata alla confettura di albicocche is the pastry of my childhood, the one that reminds me of home and family. It is the quintessential Italian breakfast and after school snack.
1 recipe of pasta frolla
350 g apricot jam
Flour for dusting the table
Butter for the tart ring
- Preheat the oven to 325° F if convection, 350° F if static.
- Take the pasta frolla out of the refrigerator and let it soften enough to be pliable. Divide the dough into two parts, one slightly bigger than the other (in this case 600 g for the large and 400 g for the smaller) Work the two doughs very briefly and give each a circular shape. Roll each dough in between two sheets of parchment paper, dusting with very little flour if needed to prevent sticking, to about 1/6 of an inch or 4mm (to a max of 7-8mm about ¼ of an inch depending from your preference)
- If the dough begins to feels too soft and breaks easily, return it to the refrigerator for about 10 minutes.
- In the meantime, lightly butter an 11- inch (28 cm) tart ring, and set it down onto a parchment-lined sheet-pan.
- Place the larger round of dough into the ring, gently pressing down the sides. Remove the excess dough by passing a rolling pin on top of the ring, and reserve the excess.
- If the jam looks too thick, soften it slightly with a tablespoon or two of water (or liquor!) in the microwave on low heat (or in a little pot on the stove). For this quantity of dough you’ll need about ¾ of a jar of jam (or about 350 g). With a fork or a dough-docker, make a few small holes in the bottom crust of the crostata. Pour the jam into the tart shell.
- Prepare the strips to cover the top of the tart. Take the smaller round of dough from the fridge, and with a pastry wheel or a knife (or with the edge of a rectangular tart pan), cut the round into even strips of about ¾ of an inch wide. Lay the strips in a crisscross pattern on top of the crostata.
- Once you have placed the strips of dough on top of the tart, you can decorate the rim with leftover dough by rolling out the dough and using tiny cookie cutters or the large side of a pastry tip to make tiny circles. Press the small circles of dough all around the perimeter. In doing this, also be careful that there is no dough sticking over the rim of the tart ring. Pass your finger all around the tart ring to be sure, because any cooked dough protruding from the sides will prevent you from easily lifting the ring when the crostata is baked.
- Bake in the preheated oven until golden, rotating the tray if necessary, about 25 to 30 minutes.
- Cool on a rack.
When adding the strips on top of the crostata, it’s always better to start from the middle of the crostata and work your way out toward the edges. This helps to achieve a more even looking lattice.
Also, if you want a more professional looking crostata you can use the Martellato lattice pie cutter. It’s easily available on internet.
After you have the lattice top, use a slightly smaller cake ring (for example a 10-inch diameter ring in this case) to cut the top. Refrigerate or freeze for easier removal.
After you place the lattice on top of the jam, make a border using the 11 and 10 inches diameter rings. You can experiment with adjusting the baking time and cooking temperature of the tart to suit your preferences.
Remember that baking at a higher temperature for a shorter time will give you a more tender tart. If, like me, you like a more cooked frolla, bake at lower temperature and for longer baking time.
You can experiment with any slightly tart jam to balance the sweetness of the dough. In Italy, the other very popular jam filling for a crostata like this is prune.
Any leftover dough can be used to make “frollini”, short pastry cookies, with or without jam. Roll them a little thinner than what you do for the tart shell, and adjust the cooking time and temperature. Usually 11-12 minutes, rotating the tray half way through the baking.