Crostata di ricotta recipe – an Italian cheese cake

Crostata di ricotta

This crostata di ricotta recipe makes a kind of Italian cheesecake, but not as sweet, rich and creamy as traditional American cheesecakes.

– Is that some kind of Italian cheese cake? a friend asked when introduced to a crostata di ricotta recipe, and although I have never thought of it that way before, I guess she is right. At least if you accept the Wikipedia definition of ‘dessert consisting of a topping made of soft, fresh cheese on a base made from biscuit, pastry or sponge.‘

Still, the Italian version is more like a pie, and it’s not as sweet, rich and creamy as American style cheese cakes. In fact, I find it a bit on the dry side, which is why I add a layer of fruit puree or marmalade beneath the ricotta. That way the result becomes truly delicious.

For the pastry
250 g flour
½ tsb salt
125 g cold butter

For the filling
250 g ricotta
100 g sugar
2 eggs
Grated lemon zest
200 ml fruit puree or marmalade

Mix flour and salt for the pie pastry. Add cold butter and cut it to pieces in the flour. Rub the ingredients together until they resemble fine bread crumbs.
Add a drop of cold water and squeeze to make the dough hold together.
Put the pastry in a plastic bag and leave it in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.
Grease an oven-proof pie disk with butter. Place the dough between two pieces of cling-film, and roll it out in a circle that can be used to line the pan.
Trim the edges of the pie crust, prick it with a fork, andcover with baking paper fill with dried beans.
Blind-bake the crust in a pre-heated oven at 175 C (350 F) for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile prepare the filling.
Beat egg whites until they are stiff.
Beat egg yolks white with sugar and gradually stir in the ricotta.
Fold the stiff egg whites and grated lemon zest into the ricotta-egg yolk-sugar mixture.
Take the pie crust out of the oven. Remove baking paper and the dried beans.
Cover the pie crust with a layer of jam (strawberry, blueberry, raspberry, rhubarb or any other red-blue fruit combination)
Top with ricotta mixture and continue baking for another 25-30 minutes.

More ways to use ricotta than this crostata di ricotta recipe

Coffee mousse recipe

Gnocchi with butter, lemon and ricotta

Cassata Siciliana

crostata di ricotta recipe

11 replies
  1. cheesecake recipes
    cheesecake recipes says:

    That cheesecake looks perfect to me. I like making my cheesecake thin like that, too. At least 2 slices will equal a big slice of a thicker cheesecake, lol! I really feel bad when I can only have a slice of cheesecake, lol! That's the compromise I got to do with my husband, he'll let me have cheesecake every week, but just a slice. So with thinner cheesecake I can argue that 2 slices actually equals one thick slice of cheesecake, lol!

  2. Rome Limo Tours
    Rome Limo Tours says:

    Agreed, not at all like the taste of what some people consider "traditional" cheesecake, but makes a wonderful alternative quick dish with wine tastings! You can get some truly delicious ideas for Italian cheesecake from some of the many wine-tasting or cooking tours held in and around Italy. Goes especially well when prepared with a light but slightly fruity mezzo wine or blush.

  3. domenicacooks
    domenicacooks says:

    Your addition of a layer of jam on the bottom is brilliant! Thank you for sharing it. I have some blackberry-apple jam that I made this past summer. I’ll bet it would be delicious in a ricotta crostata. Grazie e buone feste!

  4. Leigh
    Leigh says:

    This may be an older post but it still looks like a super delicious and easy cheescake recipe. I like the idea of using marmalade in the cake.

  5. Gian Luca
    Gian Luca says:

    I really love crostata di ricotta! To make it more creamy and rich my mom used to mix ricotta with some vanilla custard (crema alla vaniglia, o al limone) and add some raisins dipped and softed in a little brandy. Yummy!


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