Apple and Cinnamon Crostata
from The Country Cookbook: seasonal jottings and recipes, Belinda Jeffery, Lantern, 2010
This recipe had me googling to find some information. What exactly was a crostata and how did digestive biscuits come by that name? Do they aid the digestion?
The crostata was quite easy: it’s an Italian fruit tart.
The digestive biscuits have apparently been around since the late 1800s and, as sodium bicarbonate was one of the ingredients when they were first developed, it was thought that they could have had antacid properties. Well, whatever their possible property then, now, in this recipe, they were used as a sort of base inside the pastry to soak up the juices of the apples as they cooked.
Making the crostata was easy though a little time-consuming. I didn’t follow the method of making the pastry given in the book. I prefer to make it by hand rather than using equipment. It still turns out the same.
The crushed digestive biscuits were laid down inside the pastry base and the sliced apples placed on top. I did like the touch of folding the edge of the pastry back over the apples as a holding border.
It was all good eating. Applies pies always go down well—and equally so when they happen to be an Italian crostata. The digestive biscuits had become an apple-flavoured cake-like layer between the apples and the pastry. Very nice.
Ease of cooking: ✔✔✔