The temperatures are creeping up in Accra, but I have been walking to work (a very sweaty couple of kilometers). There is always something new to see, like these rubbish bins. They appeared this summer, but now have sponsorship banners. I confess, I am dubious when I see politicians promising to make Accra Africa’s cleanest city, but this is a step in the right direction.
Coconut water on offer.
Anyway, I had ricotta stashed in the fridge, and really needed to make room for a flatmate coming back with a brussel sprout stash for Thanksgiving. With a lunch invitation pending, I thought – aha! Time for a ricotta tart! I had bookmarked this Crostata with ricotta, coffee, and Sambuca from the always delightful Rowena at Rubber Slippers In Italy. She had made hers following the Casatella Terracinese from Polenta e Baccala, an excellent blog recommendation. This is a humble homage to them both, without the anise liqueur that should be included. I only had amaro, and I was not sure how that would go with cocoa. The cocoa powder was Ghanaian, and excellent quality. Bake this the day before serving, if you have time.
Ricotta, coffee and cocoa tart
Pasta frolla base: I had shop-bought sweet shortcrust pastry crust from Rome, or try this one from Polenta e Baccala.
For the filling:
500 g ricotta
150 g white sugar
50 ml strong black coffee
1.5 tbs cocoa powder
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp ground coffee
Whisk eggs and sugar, stir in cold coffee, cinnamon, cocoa and coffee, until smooth.
Roll out your pastry: I had a 26 cm pie dish, and keep a little aside for lattice stripes on top. My commercial pasta frolla was in baking parchment, very easy to roll out into the pie dish. Otherwise roll it out carefully and pour in filling. It will rise while baking. Add some decorative pastry lattice stripes. Bake at 180C for 40 minutes, on the lower part of your oven. Cool tart overnight, and serve with dusting of icing sugar (this also helps hide shoddy pastry lattice).
The tart wilted quickly in the humid Accra heat, so the icing sugar dusting is vanishing, but it was very good. Please do try the original recipe for Casatella Terracinese at Polenta e Baccala. I will definitely make that one day, with anise liqeuer.