Italian recipe

The classic Sicilian Cassata is a sweet that is proposed, usually, for the holidays. Its origins date back to the Arab domination between IX – XI century.

The Arabs had introduced sugarcane, lemon, lime, bitter orange, mandarin, almond, which was combined with the ricotta produced in Sicily since prehistoric times. Initially the sweet consisted of pastry filled with ricotta cheese and sugar and then fired (in a sense this recipe has remained and still exists Cassata baked).

It was later introduced Almond Paste which was colored green and was replaced at short pastry. During Spanish rule was added and the chocolate sponge cake and Baroque era to the recipe instead joined the candied fruit.

The decoration of the pumpkin was finally introduced by the Palermo pastry cav. Salvatore Gulì in 1873 on the occasion of an event that was held in Vienna) by the pastry chef from Palermo.

Obviously mum made Cassata for Christmas.

 

The classic Sicilian Cassata
The classic Sicilian Cassata

Preparation time: 2 days

Ingredients :

  • 1kg ricotta cheese,
  • 1.5 kg sugar (for glaze – ricotta- almond paste)
  • 300g chocolate chips
  • 6 eggs(5 for the cake, 1 egg white to the ice sugar)
  • 150g sugar
  • potato starch 74g
  • 74g flour 00
  • Vanillin
  • 500g ground almonds
  • varies candied fruit

Cream cheese to prepare at least 1 day before:

La Cassata
La Cassata

Ingredients:

  • 1kg ricotta
  • 400g icing sugar
  • 300g chocolate chips

Procedure:

With a fork, mix the ricotta with the sugar, then sieve with a strainer.

Now add the chocolate chips and put the cream in the fridge all night

 ______________________________________

Basic sponge cake:

Pan di spagna
Pan di spagna

Ingredients:

  • 5 eggs
  • 150g sugar
  • 74g flour
  • 74g potato starch
  • vanillin optional

Procedure:

  1.  Preheat the oven to 160 °
  2. Separate the egg whites from the yolks.
  3. Mount long (about 15 minutes) the egg yolks with half the sugar until it swell and become clear and frothy.
  4. Whip the whites until stiff now.
  5. Keeping whips activated put the remaining sugar gradually until the mixture becomes glossy.
  6. Add the egg yolks and mix gently with a spatula
  7.  Sift together flour, vanilla and potato starch.
  8.  Mix gently.
  9.  Grease and flour the pan and pour the mixture.
  10.  Bake for 30 minutes.
  11. The ideal is to use the sponge on the day after it is made.
  12. I usually leave it overnight covered with a wet cloth, but you can also prepare it, wrap it in cellophane and freeze it.

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For the frosting (as soon as you prepare flan cassata):

Ingredients:

  • 250 g of icing sugar
  • 4/5 tablespoons water

Procedure:

  1.  Sift the icing sugar.
  2. In a saucepan bring to boil the water and add it to the sugar gradually, stirring to dissolve the sugar.
  3. Keep stirring to remove any lumps. The compound should have a viscous consistency.
  4. If it is too liquid you can add a tablespoon of sugar, if not add water.

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Almond paste:

 

martorana
ricetta della pasta di mandorle

Ingredients:

  • 500g ground almonds
  • 500g icing sugar
  • green dye few drops
  • water q.s.

 

 

Procedure:

  1. Begin to knead the almond flour and icing sugar.
  2. Gradually add cold water continuing to knead until it becomes a smooth paste. Almond flour, reacts to the heat of the hands becoming more oily.
  3. Now add a few drops of green dye.
  4. If you have a small rectangular terrine and put into the almond paste to give it a shape ( use cling film ).

Decoration with the ice:

Ingredients:

  • 1 egg white
  • 170g of sugar

Procedure:

Whip the egg whites and gradually add the icing sugar until you get a smooth and shiny

Mount the cassata:

To assemble the cassata exist special trays, but I think you can also use a baking pan with high sides for pies.

The lined baking sheet of cling film and started to cut into rectangles the cake and also the almond paste.

Arrange along the edges of the pan rectangles of sponge cake alternating with those of almond paste.

La Cassata
La Cassata
La Cassata
La Cassata

 

Now place the other rectangles of sponge cake in the bottom of the pan.

Now you can pour inside the cream cheese, then refit the cassata with other rectangles of sponge

Put in the fridge for a few hours.

La Cassata
La Cassata
La Cassata
La Cassata
La Cassata
La Cassata

Pull the pan out of the fridge and turn it upside down on a plate.

Prepare the frosting and pour over for good. Let it harden and then proceed with the decoration with the ice using the sac-a-poche, then place the candied fruit.

 

Note: We have used dark chocolate 90% since not many in the family like the ice. I’ll show my cassata and that of the original version from an image taken from the web

 

Cassata presa dal web
Cassata presa dal web
La Cassata
La Cassata

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

transladet by: Corinne Niccoli

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