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The Sicilian cassata:
housewives cassatelle

The housewife cassatella: a variation on the theme Sicilian cassata!

Among the great specialties of Sicilian pastry the cassata occupies one of the top positions; but surely the majesty of appearance and the richness of the flavors and the ingredients is certainly not what most of us would prepare for Sunday lunch, just to bring a different cake to the table.

But, however ... there is the possibility of making a very simple version, unpretentious and, all in all, fast.
The result will leave you amazed!
I do it well.

The first choice, which allows you to manage your home preparation much better as well as the way to present them to the guests, consists in making several small cassata: some cassatelle, as defined by a friend from Catania!
I use the bowls in plastic Ikea, very comfortable!
And then reduce to a minimum the preparations that require a lot of work and then, instead of a refined sponge cake, I use a simple quick biscuit (v. recipe).
The only thing you can not abdicate, alas, is the elbow grease needed to knead the marzipan.

The housewife cassatella: a variation on the theme Sicilian cassata!

It begins!

Ingredients for six cassatelle: 



basic body (v. recipe)



Rectangular baking tray



marsala to bathe





fresh ricotta



icing sugar



gourmet chocolate



chopped candied citron



Marzipan cover:


raw marzipan



icing sugar



green food color



finely chopped pistachios


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Icing and decoration:


icing sugar



lemon juice



half candied cherries




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Mix the ingredients for the preparation of the biscuit following the recipe instructions (biscuit).
Bake it and just ready to let it cool on a wire rack.
For ease of cutting the bases, I even use two rectangular shapes of cm 34x10.

For the filling steps for filling the cannoli: knead the ricotta, very fresh, with half its weight of powdered sugar.

Coarsely grate the gourmet chocolate; shelling the candied citron (v. Note) with a little icing sugar and chop it further on the cutting board.

Stir chocolate and cedar with the cream cheese until dough is smooth and store in a cool place until ready to use.

Crumble the mass of raw marzipan with half its weight in sugar.
Then add the pistachios (unsalted!) Finely chopped and green food coloring (v. Note) and continue to knead until obtaining a homogeneous mass of color and consistency.

The mass into six equal parts, how many bowls, straighten it and then forming disks. Affect the discs along the edges to better fit bowls.

Coat each bowl with the film for food in order to prevent the marzipan from sticking to the bowl.
Then line the inside of each bowl with a disc of dough, adapting it well to the shape.
Do not worry about any burrs on the edges: they will be balanced then, if necessary.

With a pastry cutter cut out biscuit discs and keep them aside to form the base of the cassatelle.

Spread the ricotta filling in bowls flattening it coarsely.

Sprinkle with a few drops of marsala the biscuit discs (v. Note) and then apply them so that they adhere well to the stuffing.
Jag the marzipan with a knife and place half an hour in the air.

Gently invert each bowl on a piece of kitchen paper, remove the plastic film and cover with the frosting.
In a bowl, mix the icing sugar, adding the lemon juice little by little: a consistent but fluid mass should result.
With the help of a brush, spread the glaze on each dome in a thin layer. Do not cover up to the base but leave the last part uncovered irregularly.
Decorate the top of each dome with half a candied cherry. Let dry cassatelle to cool for at least an hour.

Bring the whole cassatelle to the table then divide them into quarters carefully and distribute them in the saucers for the dessert.
Better to accompany the saucers with forks: it is a very sticky dessert!

Bon appetit!


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  • These cassatelle, even if small, are real bombs of sugars: I can eat only a quarter effortlessly; see you!
  • In any case, if you wish to prepare a single cassata, always domed or flat, take into account that the amount of dough given for the biscuit It is sufficient for a round cake tin cm 26 Ø; accordingly for the size of the bowl of the pan or ring to be stuffed later.
  • Candied citron: the ideal here would be the zuccata: this winter I had also prepared with so much good will: it was so good that lasted much less than expected!
  • green dye: having available a lot of pistachio you could suspend the coloring but ... it takes a lot!
  • Marsala: I like to use Marsala. Others prefer maraschino, orange liqueur or limoncello (in the case of a preparation for children, even if it is a few drops, better to use orange flavor or even juice!).