Gluten free Italian crostata is a classic Italian sweet treat which we also enjoy for breakfast. A buttery and crumbly pastry with a creamy filling!
A crostata is a baked pie or tart, consisting of a buttery and slighty crumbly melt-in-yout-mouth dough and a creamy filling such as jam, hazelnut cream, lemon curd or even ricotta and chocolate chips!
It’s a delicious sweet treat that in some Italian regions it’s tradinationally bake for Easter or Christmas, but its is so simple, delicious and versatile that can be baked, like, every single day of the year!
You will need:
- 150g of rice flour
- 70g of potato starch
- 30g of cornmeal (not corn starch!)
- A pinch of xanthan gum
- A pinch of baking powder (optional)
- 100g of butter
- 100gof sugar
- 2 eggs
- The zest of one lemon
- A tsp of vanilla extract
Let’s make the dough for our gluten free Italian crostata!
Mix together the flours, sugar, baking powder and xanthan. Also add the cubed butter and start kneading until you get a sandy mixture. Add the lightly beaten eggs together with lemon zest and vanilla and continue to knead until the mixture is smooth and homogeneous. Wrap it in cling film and store the fridge for at least an hour.
Take two thirds of the dough and transfer it to a sheet of parchment paper. With the help of a rolling pin, make not too thick disc, or according to your tastes, slightly larger than the pan. 22cm tart pan will per perfect. It’s very important to flour the work surface and the utensils with rice flour before proceeding.
Turn the paper upside down on the greased and floured baking pan and, after gently removing the parchment paper, run the rolling pin along the side to trim the eccesso. Press lightly the dough on the bottom and sides to make the pastry stick. Prick it with the prongs of a fork and stuff your gluten free Italian crostata: I used a delicate lemon custard cream with sour cherry syrup.
With the remaining pastry, make the classic strips of the Italian crostata or the decoration you prefer. Refrigerate again an hour before baking in a preheated oven at 180°C for about 25/30 minutes.
- Xanthan is not essential, but it really helps a lot. Makes the dough more elastic, more workable and re-workable. For example, I re-kneaded it three times and the last batch of biscuits was not affected at all. If you want, you can omit it, but its presence will surely help you a lot.
- The traditional Italian crostata does not call for bakinf powder, but in my point of view, we can do everything we want in the kitchen. When I make the tart for me, I always add a pinch of baking powder, because I like it better. But don’t tell anyone!
- With the remaining pastry, you can of course bake some delicious shortbread. They bake rather quickly: ten minutes in a hot oven will be more than enough!