Delicious and Most Nutritious

Pastiera Recipe – Italian Easter Pie

Recipe:
Serves 16
Prep time: 40 mins
Cook time: 3 hrs

Ingredients:
4 cups Plain Flour
1/2 cup Granulated Sugar
4 Egg Yolks
1+1/2 teaspoons Orange zest
1 teaspoon Salt
3/4 cup Unsalted Butter, cold and cut into small cubes
1/4 cup Vegetable Shortening, cold and cut into small cubes
1 envelope Vanillina or 1 teaspoon of Vanilla Extract
3 tablespoons Ice Water

For the Grain:
1 x 580 g Jar Grano Cotto
3+1/4 cups Whole Milk
4 tablespoons Unsalted Butter, at room temperature

For the remaining filling:
500 g Whole Milk Ricotta
1+1/2 cups Granulated Sugar
1/2 cup Citron
1 teaspoon Ground Cinnamon
1 vial Millefiore
6 Eggs

Process:

1) The first thing you need to make is the grain filling.
In a large pot, add the grain, milk and butter.
Cook it on low heat for about 2 hours or more.
You’re looking for the mixture to be creamy and the grain to be super soft.
You might need to add a bit more milk if it starts to dry out
before the grain is soft, this is a step best done the night before.

2) Once the grain mixture is cooked, pour it in and let it cool completely.

Next, the dough:

3) In the bowl of standing mixer fitted with a paddle attachment,
add the flour, vanillina, orange zest, salt and sugar.
Mix briefly until combined well.

4) Add the cold butter and shortening.
Mix until the butter and shortening are well distributed throughout the dry ingredients
and there are little bits of them running through the mixture.

5) Add the egg yolks and mix until the dough starts to come together.

6) With the mixer running, add in a tablespoon of ice water at a time
until the dough starts coming together well.

7) Dump on a floured surface and cut the dough into two equal pieces.

8) Roll each piece on your work surface until its nice and smooth.
Then cut off half of the dough off each ball of dough
(so all together you should have 2 large balls of dough and 2 small).
Wrap each ball of dough with plastic wrap flattening them into a disk slightly.
Pop them in the fridge for about an hour.

9) To make the ricotta filling, place the ricotta in a large bowl along with the sugar and eggs
(since this is such a large amount, do it in a standing mixer fitted with a whisk attachment)
and whisk them together until nice and smooth, this will take a few minutes.

10) Add the cooked and cooled grain and continue to mix for a few minutes or until well incorporated.

11) Add the cinnamon, citron and millefiore and mix them in at the last minute.
Sit the filling aside as you roll out the dough.

12) Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.
Butter two 23 cm (9”) metal pie dishes or baking pans and set aside.

13) Working with one of the larger pieces of dough at a time,
roll it out to about a 30 cm (12”) circle onto a floured surface,
lay the dough into one of the pie dishes
making sure that there is some over hanging on the sides.

14) Fill the dough with half of the filling and set aside.

15) Take one of the smaller pieces of dough and roll that out onto a floured surface as well.
Cut some strips about 4 cm (1+1/2”) wide and
lay them across on a diagonal to form a diamond pattern.

16) Seal the edges of the strips with the over hanging dough from the bottom and cut out the excess dough.
Place the completed pie on a baking sheet and repeat the same process with the other one.

17) Bake the pies for about 1 hour and 15 minutes or slightly longer,
you’re looking for the filling to be set and the crust to be golden brown.
If the edges start to brown too quickly,
cover them with aluminium foil until the rest of the pie is fully cooked.

18) Allow to cool at room temperature overnight
or
pop it in the fridge after it cools to room temperature.