Torta della Nonna (“Grandmother’s Cake”)

January 30, 2010  |  By The International Kitchen
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Torta della Nonna (“Grandmother’s Cake”)

Traditional torta della nonna made during a cooking vacation in ItalyMake this traditional Italian dessert on a cooking vacation in Italy.  Popular throughout Italy, the “torta della nonna” combines many of our favorite Italian flavors including custard and pine nuts!


  • 250 grams butter (about 9 oz)
  • 320 grams flour (11 oz)
  • 14 eggs
  • 340 grams sugar (120 oz)
  • 1 liter milk (about 1 quart)
  • 10 grams pine nuts (about 1-2 tbps)
  • 30 grams raisins (3-4 tbsp)
  • 30 grams powder sugar (3-4 tbsp)

InstructionsEggs ready for a baking class during a culinary tour of Italy

How to make the pie dough (pasta frolla)

In a bowl knead the butter quickly with 140 grams of the sugar and 1 whole egg.
Add 250 grams of flour and knead the compound again.
Let the pasta frolla rest in the refrigerator for about 4 hours.

How to make the custard

Heat the milk to its boiling point.
Separate the yolks from the egg whites and place in two bowls.
Beat 12 yolks with the remaining flour and the sugar.
Add the warm milk slowly to the yolk/flour/sugar mixture stirring continually with a whisk until the cream becomes quite fluid. Then place aside to let cool.

Crust ready for a dessert class during a cooking vacation in ItalyBaking

Take the pasta frolla out of the fridge and work it again with your hands or a rollin pin on a pre-floured surface. Stretch 3/5 of the pasta frolla inside a round pie dish.
Fill the dish with the custard and sprinkle raisins and pine nuts over the top.
Stretch out the remaining pasta frolla and then cover the custard filling. Press the edges of the 2 doughs together with your hands.
Beat an egg and spread on top of the pie dough with a small brush.
Bake in a pre-heated oven at 180 C for 40 minutes.

Serve the cake on a plate and sprinkle with powder sugar.

Serves 10.

By Peg Kern

Try a delicious recipe for a simple white cake with pastry cream filling

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