Summer fruit is here, and that means it's time for sweet, flaky pies cooling on the windowsill. This simple, rustic crostata needs no pie pan or fancy decoration, letting the fruit shine with a sweetly-scented cardamom crust.
This recipe makes six individual crostatas
For the pastry:
2 1/4 cups of all-purpose organic flour
1/4 cup of raw sugar
1/2 teaspoon of ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon of kosher salt
1 1/2 sticks of unsalted organic butter (about 6 ounces)
3 1/2-4 tablespoons of cold water
6 amaretti cookies, crushed
For the filling:
1 pint of fresh, organic berries*
2 cups of ripe organic fruit*, diced
3 tablespoons plus 6 teaspoons of raw sugar
2 tablespoons of cornstarch
1 tablespoon of heavy organic cream
1 organic egg yolk, beaten with heavy cream
Begin with the crust. In a food processor, combine the flour, sugar, cardamom and salt. Pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the crumbs are pea size.
Sprinkle 3 tablespoons of water over the mixture. Process for 3 to 4 seconds, until it starts to come together (if the dough looks very sandy, add water and pulse a few more times until it is clumping but slightly loose).
Turn the dough out onto a large sheet of plastic wrap. Bring the wrap up and fold it over to cover the top of the dough. Press it into a 7-inch disk. Chill the dough for at least 30 minutes.
Divide the dough into six equal pieces. Roll each piece out on a lightly-floured board, to form 1/8-inch-thick circles approximately 5 inches in diameter.
Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
Transfer the circles to the sheet.
Spoon the cookie crumbs into the center of the circles.
In a large bowl, gently toss the berries, fruit, sugar and cornstarch.
Mound the fruit evenly in the center of each circle, leaving a 1-inch border around the edges.
Bring the pastry up and over filling, just to form a 1-inch border.
Brush the pastry lightly with the egg mixture and sprinkle it with sugar. Chill it for at least 30 minutes.
Position the oven rack in the lower third of the oven. Pre-heat the oven to 425°F.
Bake the crostata for 35 minutes, until the center lightly bubbles and the crust is deep golden.
Cool for 15 minutes.
Serve warm with gelato or lightly sweetened whipped cream.
Recipe adapted from Rachael Ray
Image: Timothy Vollmer