Once again I have to give a big shout out to Gina De Palma’s Dolce Italiano, one of the best cookbooks ever written! I just can’t get enough of this book. Maybe it’s because I love dessert, or perhaps it’s because it deals with Italian food or just maybe it’s because this book and it’s recipes are so well written.
I will say right away that this photo does not do justice to the magnificence of the apple confection. From the buttery crust, to the slightly creamy apple filling, to the subtly spiced crumb topping, each bite is better than the last. Baked in a springform pan, it is really a cross between a cake and a tart.
Some years back there was a bakery in Los Angeles called Massimo’s. You entered through the back of the building into a tiny shop with two small pastry cases and a freezer with gelato. Everything baked here was delectable. I would buy a box of their very Italian cookies and try my best to not devour them in the car on the long ride home! My favorite treat from this shop was not a “biscotto“, but an apple cake that they made. From my first bite, I was won over and lamented the fact that this shop was two hours from my house. Time passed, the bakery was sold and things are just not the same. I think about that apple cake and wondered if I’d ever find something like it again.
Well, my dreams have been answered, because Gina’s Italian Apple Tart is not only as good as what I bought at Massimo’s, it is better. I’m not posting the recipe because if you don’t have Gina’s book, you need to get it! It’s apple season and I’m making this the next chance I get. For now, I’m popping the leftover slice into the oven and whipping up some cream. Buon Appetito!