Lemony Ricotta, Chocolate and Pistachio Tart

March 2, 2024

This tart is decadently delicious and rich in classic ingredients, but also so delicate at the same time. Creamy sheep ricotta and dark chocolate filling is elevated by very fragrant freshly grated lemon zest, pairing so well with almost copious amounts of pistachios, all set in an almond, chocolate and cinnamon tart case. My little bow towards Sicily.

For the pastry:

  • 155 g of plain flour, sifted
  • 120 g of chilled butter, cubed
  • 1 egg
  • 55 g of caster sugar
  • 13-15 g of a good coca powder, sifted
  • 50 g of ground almonds
  • a few pinches of cinnamon to taste
  • a pinch of salt

For the ricotta filling:

  • 460 – 480 g of sheep ricotta, passed through a sieve for extra creaminess
  • 3 eggs, separated
  • 100 g of caster sugar
  • grated zest from one unwaxed lemon
  • 70 g of dark chocolate, finely chopped or grated

To decorate:

  • 100 g of pistachios, or more to your liking
  • some icing sugar

Mix in a large bowl all the dry ingredients for the pastry.

Add the butter and work the ingredients in your hands until obtaining the consistency of sand.

Add the egg combining all the ingredients into a smooth pastry. Form a bowl and then flatten it a little, wrap in a cling film and leave in the fridge for 40-60 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 170 C fan.

Grease a round spring form tin (23 cm in diameter) with butter.

Take the pastry out of the fridge and roll it out into a circle.

Place it in the tin and gently press the dough onto the bottom and inside of the baking dish. Trim the edges by rolling a rolling pin over the tart tin. Prick the bottom with a fork, line the dish with baking parchment and fill with dry beans or rice (this process will prevent the pastry from rising).

Place the baking tin in the oven and bake blind for 10-13 minutes.

Take it out, remove the baking parchment and leave to cool.

Prepare the ricotta filling:

Mix in a bowl the ricotta, lemon zest, about 50 g of the sugar and the egg yolks.

Whisk the egg whites in a separate bowl until they start to form soft peaks. Add the remaining sugar and whisk again until firm and glossy.

Fold a third of the egg whites into the ricotta mixture, and then follow the process with the remaining quantity of the whisked egg whites, trying to keep as much air in as possible.

Lastly fold the chopped chocolate into the ricotta filling, pour it into the tart case, even out the surface and bake (170 C fan) for 30 minutes.

Take the tart out the oven and leave on a wire rack to cool down completely.

Remove it from the baking tin and gently move onto a large serving plate.

To decorate:

Chop about half of the pistachios and roll the rest in icing sugar.

Decorate the tart with alternate lines as on the picture and enjoy !