14 November 2009

La Crostata (jam tart)

dairy free egg free

This is my mother's recipe, gone dairy/egg free. A classic Italian cake at our house (and there aren't too many admittedly as mum doesn't have a large sweet repertoire, but what she does, she does beautifully). I'm somewhat bemused by the unconventional pastry method - it's essentially a shortcrust base, but instead of flour and butter rubbed together, the butter is melted. Weird, ma! But who am I to argue when it tastes so good...

300gr self-raising flour
1 egg replacer (Orgran)
1 tbsp rice or soy milk
100gr dairy-free margarine (Nuttelex)
100gr sugar
1 tbsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1 tbsp rum (optional)

300gr plum or quince jam
1 tbsp cocoa

Melt the margarine and let cool slightly while you beat the flour, egg replacer, milk, rum, sugar and salt. Pour in the margarine and mix until a dough forms. Remove 1/3 of the dough and set aside for the strips. Press the remainder into a greased 20cm loose-bottom tart pan ensuring the dough comes up the sides. Trim off any excess. The base does not need to be blind-baked but because it uses self raising flour, it should be pressed to no more than half a centimetre thickness.

Mix the cocoa into your jam and spread onto tart base. With the dough you set aside, break small pieces and roll them into long threads, criss crossing your tart. Bake in 180 C pre-heated oven for about 20-25 minutes. Please check it regularly - mum's original recipe says 30 minutes but with my oven it needed much less.

If it's slightly burnt, you can always dust with icing sugar ;)


  1. Would there have been a splash of milk in your mum's original pastry recipe? Or does that compensate for the removal of eggs/ addition of egg replacer?

  2. Yes, it was definitely there!