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The neapolitan pastiera

The neapolitan pastiera THE GIFT OF THE PASTIERA
The pastiera is considered the dessert par excellence of Easter; ever-present, everywhere, both at homes and restaurants, as well as the “struffoli” represent Christmas. Its fortune, tied to an aromatic fragrance reminiscent of spring, has grown over time and, in recent years has become an emblem of classic Neapolitan pastry. In fact it is prepared and consumed also away from Easter holidays. Every family in Naples, as is the case for most of the recipes that have a long history, has developed its own “traditional variant” that is handed down to young people, generation after generation. The pastiera also has a symbolic value, it is a gift and, on Easter Eve, it is given to friends and relatives as a present. This creates a dizzying exchange of flaavours and tastes among acquaintances, a game that turns in a real competition, to decide who has prepared the “best pastiera”.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 200g wet wheat already softened
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 orange
  • 300g flour
  • 400g sugar
  • 150g butter
  • 7 eggs
  • 300g ricotta cheese
  • 1 vial orange flower water
  • 1 packet of Vanillin
  • 200g candied fruit
  • 1,5 liters of milk
  • icing sugar
  • salt

DIRECTIONS:
Cook the wheat on a very low flame into the milk, for about four hours in a covered pot, with the addition of zest of half a lemon. Remove the cooked grain (thick and creamy) and add a bit of cinnamon, vanillin, grated rind of half an orange and let stand for an entire night. Separately, prepare the pastry with flour, 150 grams of sugar, butter, three egg yolks, a pinch of salt and let stand for one hour.In a bowl dissolve the ricotta with 250 grams of sugar, 4 egg yolks, candied fruit, the orange flower water and 4 egg whites previously beaten until stiff. Roll out the pastry (keeping a little for the garnish) in a buttered baking dish and pour the mixture of wheat and ricotta: garnish, with strips of pastry by crossing them. Bake in preheated oven for one hour. Once cooled, dust with icing sugar.

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