Crostata is a tart, which can be prepared with many different types of fillings. This recipe, with wild berries and hazelnuts, is a classic of northern Italian cuisine. The tart is prepared all year round: in summer with fresh berries, of course, but if there are none, you can also simply use jam. This delicious tart is also very quick to make.
Crostata for good friends
When I was a child, the woods around our summerhouse were similar to a well-laid table. There were wild herbs, mushrooms and an abundance of berries. Whenever my grandma Nina expected a guest whom she particularly liked, she insisted that we help her pick berries. Because only the small, aromatic wild brambles were good enough for her cake. The berries from our own garden had too little flavour. If it rained, the crostata was served with jam anyway. And that was not only due to the fact that, on such days, the berries had hardly any fragrance and perished more easily.
The clumsy Devil
According to an old superstition (or was it just a story told by my grandmother?), the rebellious Lucifer was banished from heaven by God on a rainy day. Despite his power, Lucifer fell to earth and landed in a bramble bush, of all places. Riddled with thorns, the proud fallen angel became even angrier than he was already and he cursed the wet bramble bush for all eternity. Perhaps this is why the small berries, when picked on rainy days, become so quickly unpalatable.
Wild berries and hazelnut crostata
- 300 g butter, cold
- 240 g ground hazelnuts
- 240 g flour
- 200 g sugar
- 1 pinch salt
- 500 g berries, fresh berries (brambles, raspberries, blueberries, wild strawberries)
- 2 tablespoon corn starch
- 1-2 tablespoon sugar
- Pre-heat the oven (upper and lower heat) to 180°C. Line a baking tin with baking paper.
- Quickly knead all ingredients for the base into a crumbly dough. Use your hands to flatten the dough in the springform pan, forming a rim as well. Place the baking dish with the dough in the refrigerator to chill.
- Bring the berries to a boil in a saucepan, stirring constantly. Mix the corn starch in a little warm water. Add the sugar and corn starch to the berries. Simmer gently until the berries thicken like liquid jam. Remove from heat and allow to cool a little.
- Remove the baking dish from the fridge and cover the bottom of the dough with the berries. Bake in the pre-heated oven for 40-45 minutes, until the edges of dough are lightly browned. Enjoy cold. A spoonful of whipped cream is the perfect accompaniment to this delicious tart!