A cousin of the French galette, the Italian crostata is a rustic, open-faced tart with a crispy crust and juicy fruit filling. I’ve emphasized the rustic by adding whole wheat flour to the crust, which gives it a subtle earthy flavor that works nicely with the bright flavored blueberries. Sprinkling Panko crumbs over the tart dough is a trick I use to sop up some of the liquid from the fruit, preventing the crust from getting soggy and heavy. Serve this warm, with vanilla ice cream, my No-Churn Lemon Ice Cream or sweetened whipped cream. The crostata does not keep well, but, happily, you won’t have any trouble finishing it off in a day.
Makes 6 servings
Whole Wheat Crust:
- 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons (146 grams) all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup (31 grams) whole wheat flour
- 1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
- 2 teaspoons (8 grams) granulated sugar
- ¼ teaspoon fine sea salt
- 9 tablespoons (127 grams) unsalted butter, cut into ½-inch pieces and frozen for 20 minutes
- 3 tablespoons (44 grams) ice-cold water
- ½ teaspoon white vinegar
- ¼ cup (33 grams) all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons (14 grams) chopped blanched almonds
- 2 tablespoons (27 grams) firmly packed light brown sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- Pinch of fine sea salt
- 2 tablespoons (28 grams) unsalted butter, melted
- ½ cup (100 grams) granulated sugar
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 ½ cups (390 grams) fresh blueberries
- 2 tablespoons (30 grams) freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 1 large egg whisked with 1 teaspoon water for egg wash
- 2/3 cup (47 grams) Panko breadcrumbs
Make the crust:
- Place the flours, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add the butter pieces and toss lightly with a spoon to coat them with flour. Blend the fat and flour with about five 1-second pulses or until the mixture is the texture of coarse meal with some of the butter pieces the size of small peas. Sprinkle the water and vinegar over the flour mixture and process continuously until the dough begins to clump together. Do not over-process; the dough should not form a ball on the blade. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and shape it into a thick 4-inch wide disc. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and chill until firm enough to roll, about 1 hour.
- Place the unwrapped dough on a work surface that has been lightly dusted with flour and dust the dough with some flour. Using a rolling pin, roll the dough out into a 12-inch circle, lifting and rotating the dough often, while dusting the work surface and dough lightly with flour as necessary. Roll the dough up on the rolling pin and unroll it onto a parchment paper lined baking sheet. Refrigerate the dough on the sheet while you make the topping and filling.
Make the topping:
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour, almonds, brown sugar, cinnamon and salt and process until the almonds are finely ground. Add the melted butter and pulse the machine until the mixture is crumbly. Set the topping aside.
Make the filling:
- Preheat the oven to 375°F.
- In a bowl, whisk together the sugar and the cornstarch until well combined. Add the blueberries and lemon juice and toss well to evenly coat the berries.
Assemble and bake the crostata:
- Transfer the crust, still on the parchment paper, to a room temperature baking sheet (you don’t want to use the chilled one). Brush the egg mixture around 3/4 inch of the outer edge of the chilled dough round. Sprinkle the Panko crumbs in the center of the dough, spreading it up to the egg washed border. Spoon the blueberry filling over the crumbs. Fold the egg-washed edge of dough over the filling. Sprinkle the filling with the Streusel Topping. Brush the dough edge well with the egg wash. Bake the crostata for 30 to 40 minutes, until the pastry is golden brown around the edges. Cool it on the baking sheet for 10 minutes.
- Transfer the crostata to a serving plate and cut into wedges to serve.