Torta al Limone from Capri
What do I associate with Italy? Parmesan, buffalo mozzarella, really good olive oil, pasta, pizza and gelato - in a word: fantastic food. And of course spirited people, amazing holidays and great fashion. When Natalie of COOKING magazine came for a visit, I served my three favourite Italian dishes. As visits at the local Italian restaurant are usually a bit disappointing for me, since I'm not allowed to eat either pasta or pizza, I've collected my very own top gluten-free Italian recipes. They were mostly discovered on vacation but are a highlight all year round - like the Torta al Limone from Capri.
I'll admit to never having been on this island in the Gulf of Naples. The only association I've had with this location since I was a teenager is capri pants. They have been a classic for a long time - and are highly fashionable again since 2002. German designer and capri pant creator Sonja de Lennert must have been inspired by this wonderful island, back in the 1940s. My delicious lemon tarte however, I discovered on a holiday in Tuscany and I immediately inquired after the recipe. Since then, the tarte/torta has been a quickly baked and extremely delicious highlight in our family.
Really, my motto should be:„When life gives you lemons, make Capri Lemon Tarte“. The Torta al Limone is particularly amazing because it only takes 20 minutes to prepare and 25 minutes to bake. It tastes fresh and juicy and should be eaten warm, right from the oven.
COOKING popped by for a visit this week - you can read the entire article in the magazine's new edition, out today. Also on my list: a dreamy layered dish called Parmigiana di Sciliana.
When you're in Italy or an Italian restaurant, you'll often find Parmigiana on the menu, which, in Italian cuisine, is a special type of casserole, the most popular of which includes aubergines. I used courgettes (zucchini) instead.
Typical for this dish: layers of parmesan and tomato sauce in combination with selected vegetables. I have also added eggs, which enhance the Parmigiana and make it even more delicious.
As this dish does away with any pasta (no lasagna sheets anywhere in sight), it's a gluten-free dream.
And I've got another quick and cool takeout/office idea for you - my layered salad. Always start with the dressing and then top with all the other ingredients like chickpeas, lentils, vegetables and the like. Perfect for an office lunch the following day.
Torta al Limone from Capri
Ingredients for Torta al Limone:
- 30g almond meal
- 150g (gluten-free) flour (cornflour, for example)
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 120g butter
- 85g granulated sugar
- 2 eggs
- 1 tsp vanilla powder
- 1 untreated lemon
- 60ml milk
- 30g icing sugar
- pinch of salt
- a little butter and flour for the baking tin
- a baking tin
Ingredients for Sicilian Parmigiana Di Zucchine:
- 1 tin peeled tomatoes
- 2 courgettes/zucchini
- 2 eggs
- 50g parmesan
- 125g buffalo mozzarella
- ½ bunch basil
- a few sprigs thyme
- 1 TBSP olive oil
- salt and pepper
Ingredients for the Italian Antipasto Salad:
- 1 tin white beans
- 40g parmesan
- 1 red onion
- a handful of rocket
- 3 TBSP olive oil
- 2 TBSP balsamic vinegar
- salt and pepper
- 1 stick of ciabatta
Preparation for Torta al Limone:
- Brush a baking form with butter and dust with flour. Preheat oven to 180°C (fan).
- Combine almond meal and flour in a bowl and add baking powder and salt. In another bowl, whisk the butter until it's frothy and mix in the granulated sugar until it's well combined and a creamy white colour.
- Whisk in the eggs one by one and mix until well combined.
- Wash the lemon with hot water and grate the zest. Squeeze the lemon. Mix the vanilla powder, lemon zest, juice and milk in with the egg mixture and stir well.
- Carefully fold in the flour mixture and pour the batter into the baking form. Bake for 20-25 minutes. Let the cake cool down and finally dust with icing sugar.
Preparation for Sicilian Parmigiana Di Zucchine:
- Preheat oven to 200°C (upper/lower). Wash the zucchini and cut lengthwise into pieces 0,5cm in size. Temporarily place the zucchini slices in an ovenproof form and salt generously. Wash, shake dry and pick the basil. Set aside a few leaves for the garnish and finely chop the rest. Grate the parmesan. Cut the mozzarella into thin slices.
- Heat up the oil in a pan, remove the zucchini slices from the form and grill on all sides in a pan. Put half the peeled tomatoes in an ovenproof form. Layer half the zucchini slices on top, then half the mozzarella slices and half the basil. Repeat with the rest of the ingredients. Whisk the eggs and combine with the parmesan. Pour the egg-parmesan mixture over the whole dish at the end.
- Place the form in the preheated oven and bake for 40 minutes. Arrange the Parmigiana di Zucchine on plates, garnish with the remaining basil leaves and serve.
Preparation for Italian Antipasto Salad:
- Pour the olive oil and the balsamic vinegar into a jar and season with salt and pepper. Mix well. Peel and coarsely chop the onion. Wash and shake dry the rocket. Coarsely grate the parmesan.
- Drain the beans and add to the jar. Top with red onion, parmesan and rocket, season with salt and keep in the fridge until ready to serve.
- Serve the salad in the jar with a fresh piece of ciabatta and enjoy.