For the month of November we at the Daring Kitchen were challenged by Ginger-Z to make the delicious Torta della Nonna. This humble Italian cake is seen in many variations, single crusted and double crusted. Many years ago I had clipped a recipe from an Australian magazine Home Beautiful. Actually the clipping is dated 1993! Oops, never got around to making it. For my version, I added a layer of Nutella at the bottom of the pastry and I mean, what is not made better with Nutella!
I am sad to report that this will be the second last Daring Kitchen challenge. Daring Kitchen has been an important part of my baking life since 2009 and was the catalyst for starting this blog. Daring Kitchen will close it’s doors following the December challenge. It is with this amazing group of people that I have learnt many baking skills – puff pastry, macarons, croissants, many tortes and delicious treats from around the world. Daring Kitchen will be missed.
- 2½ cups milk
- 1 vanilla bean split
- 2 egg yolks try 4 egg yolks
- ½ cup castor sugar
- ¼ cup plain flour (cornstarch) 30 grams or 10 teaspoons as in my pastry cream
- pinenuts for topping rinse in cold water so they stick to the top
- 2 cups flour
- pinch salt
- 2 egg yolks or try 1 egg plus 1 yolk
- 125 g butter cut into pieces
- ½ cup castor sugar
- ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- grated zest of one lemon
- To make the custard, heat the milk and vanilla bean until just starts to boil. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Beat the egg yolks and sugar well until light and creamy. Stir in the flour. With a whisk gradually add in the warm milk.
- Strain the milk mixture back into the saucepan. Return to the heat and stir until it thickens. Boil for about a minute to cook the flour.
- Remove from the heat and pour into a bowl covering with plastic wrap touching the custard to prevent a skin forming.
- To make the pastry, in a food processor place the flour, salt, egg yolks, butter, sugar and vanilla. Process until the mixture just starts to come together. Remove and wrap in plastic wrap and chill for an hour.
- When ready, grease a 20cm pie plate and preheat the oven to 180°C.
- Divide the dough in two pieces, with on slightly larger. Roll out the larger piece between to pieces of non stick baking paper until large enough to fit the pie plate. Carefully lift the pastry and press into the pie plate, trimming the edges.
- Spread the base with Nutella, as much as you wish, then top with the prepared custard. Brush the edges with water.
- Roll out the second piece of pastry as you did with the first and fit over the custard, pressing the edges to seal and then trim off excess. Brush the top with water and sprinkle with slivered almonds. Bake in preheated oven for 40 minutes.
- Allow to cool and dust with abundant icing sugar. Serve at room temperature or chilled.