Recipe: Italian broccoli and ricotta tart

Dominique Rizzo often draws from her Sicilian heritage for inspiration when it comes to cooking. She shares with us just how easy it is to make your own pastry tart from scratch. 

Recipe: Italian broccoli and ricotta tart_SM

Pastry is often something that you may shy away from but this broccoli and ricotta tart uses a quick easy old Italian recipe for its pastry, using only stone ground flour, virgin olive oil, and water. The tart itself is a great idea for lunch, a simple family dinner, and makes a fantastic addition to your next picnic or work lunch box. If broccoli is not one of your favourite vegetables feel free to substitute roast pumpkin, roast capsicum, or sautéed mushrooms.

Serves 6-8

Makes 1 x 24cm tart
200g stone ground plain flour, or half and half whole meal and plain flour
¼ cup extra virgin olive oil
½ teaspoon salt

FILLING
300g broccoli , broken into florets
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 clove garlic, minced
300g fresh firm ricotta
80g grated pecorino cheese
2 eggs

Preheat the oven to 190°C.

Sift the flour and make a well in the centre, combine the oil with 125ml of warm water and salt. Slowly combine the flour into the liquid mix until it starts to come together. Knead the dough for about 5-6 minutes until smooth. Press the dough into a disk and then wrap with plastic, leaving the dough to sit in the fridge for ½ hour to rest.

Trim the stalks off the broccoli and cut into florets. Bring a pot of salted water to the boil, and boil the broccoli until al dente and drain.

Heat a frypan over moderate temperature and add the 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Add in the garlic and fry for 5-6 seconds, before adding in the broccoli and sauté for an extra 3 minutes. Remove from the heat and allow to cool. Place the ricotta, pecorino cheese, and eggs in a bowl and combine together, stir in the broccoli and season with salt and pepper.

Split the dough into two halves, one larger than the other. Roll out each dough onto a floured bench top each to 2-3mm in thickness, with the larger halve 3-4 cm bigger than the other. Place the larger sheet of pastry onto a greased 24cm frypan or baking dish that can go on the stove and can fit into the oven. Spoon the broccoli and ricotta mixture into the pastry lightly pressing the mixture down to about 1½ cm thickness. Top the tart with the smaller pastry then fold over the edges, brushing the top with olive oil.

Heat the pan over a low to moderate temperature and cook for 5 minutes, then place into the oven and cook for a further 20 minutes until golden.

Serve hot, or allow to cool slightly and serve at room temperature.

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