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Italian Easter tart

"This is a traditional tart eaten in Naples at Easter," says Ingram. "The legend goes that a mermaid called Parthenope in the Gulf of Napoli would sing to celebrate the arrival of spring each year. One year, to say thank you, the Neapolitans offered her gifts of ricotta, flour, eggs, wheat, perfumed orange flowers and spices. She took them to her kingdom under the sea, where the gods made them into a cake. I love to add nibs of chocolate to Parthenope cake because I think it marries nicely with the candied orange and sultanas, but, really, do you need an excuse to add chocolate to anything?" Start this recipe a day ahead to prepare the pastry and soak the sultanas.

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Apple and cinnamon hot cross buns

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Australia's best take-away

We've hunted down some excellent eats-to-go to fuel your next picnic, lunch break or Tuesday night in...

Quince and hazelnut crumble


You'll need

  Quince filling 350 gm caster sugar 200 ml dessert wine 200 ml verjuice Rind and juice of 2 lemons and 1 orange 1 vanilla bean, split and seeds scraped 5 quinces 65 gm brown sugar   Hazelnut crumble 100 gm plain flour 65 gm brown sugar 50 gm ground hazelnuts 30 gm roasted hazelnuts, coarsely chopped 75 gm butter, coarsely chopped 1 tbsp finely grated orange rind To serve: double cream

Method

  • 01
  • Preheat oven to 150C. Combine sugar, dessert wine, verjuice, rinds, half the juice, vanilla bean and seeds with 1 cup of water in a saucepan and stir over medium-high heat until sugar dissolves, then transfer to a small roasting pan. Peel and core four quinces (reserving skins and cores), cut into wedges and add to syrup, cover with baking paper and weigh down with reserved skins and cores. Cover with foil and bake for 4-5 hours or until quince is tender and dark pink. Remove skins, cores and baking paper and discard.
  • 02
  • Using a slotted spoon, transfer quince to a bowl. Peel and core remaining quince, thinly slice using a mandolin and add to cooked quince. Add remaining juices and brown sugar and toss to coat. Divide among a lightly buttered 1 litre-capacity ovenproof dish and set aside. Reserve poaching liquid for another use (see note).
  • 03
  • Increase oven temperature to 180C. For hazelnut crumble, combine flour, sugar, ground and chopped hazelnuts in a bowl, add butter and orange rind and, using fingertips, rub butter into dry ingredients until mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Scatter over quince mixture, piling up slightly in the centre. Place on an oven tray and bake for 45-50 minutes or until bubbling and crumble is golden. Serve with double cream or quince ice (see note).

Note Quince can be cooked up to 2 weeks ahead. For quince ice, combine poaching liquid with ½ cup each of water and buttermilk and freeze in an ice-cream maker according to manufacturer's instructions. Alternatively, freeze in a container for 6 hours, then use a fork to scrape into crystals.


At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people
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At A Glance

  • Serves 6 people

Featured in

Aug 2007

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