Pasti Ciotti

By • June 12, 2011 • 28 Comments

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Author Notes: This was my great grandmothers recipe it is most likely close to 100 years old.. My Aunt translated into English, and did the equivalency calculations. . Pasti Ciotti is an Italian pastry made in a fluted pustie tin. It's a tender pastry crust filled with either chocolate or vanilla pastry cream. I have loved these since I was a child and often go to Court Street Bakery in Brooklyn just to get a pasti chat. Court Street Bakery is the closest I have found to what I remember from my childhood. For this recipe I used lard as that is how it was made and I wanted to stay true to the original recipe. You can substitute butter or vegetable shortening for the lard or do some of each. I think that the lard made this pastry crust exceptional. If you purchase pastry from an Italian bakery you may notice a very distinct flavor sort of citrus and floral its called fiori di sicilia. I found it at the Bakers Catalog/King Arthur flour. Its optional of course but can be added to the filling if you like.sdebrango

Serves 10

The pastry crust

  • 4 cups Flour (refrigerate your flour it should be cold)
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 2 cups Brown Sugar (Not packed)
  • 1 cup Lard very cold
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  • 1/4 cup Cold Milk
  • Egg wash, Beat one egg with a teaspoon of sugar to brush on the pastry before baking
  1. Pre-heat oven to 350 degrees. In mixing bowl add the flour, brown sugar,baking powder, and salt, whisk to combine making sure any clumps of brown sugar are incorporated.
  2. In measuring cup add the milk and eggs, beat together then add the vanilla and stir to incorporate
  3. Measure your lard and add to dry ingredients, use a pastry cutter to cut the lard into the flour mixture it should resemble crumbs. Add the milk, egg and vanilla and with a fork combine. Working quickly gather the dough into a cohesive disk, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least an hour.
  4. Flour work surface,Cut dough in half one half will be bottom crust the other top crust, place half of dough back in refrigerator while working. Have your pustie tins or fluted tartlet pans ready.Either roll or press the dough into the pans it should be approximately 1/4 in thick, if dough starts to warm put back in refrigerator. When you have put the dough in the tins, place in refrigerator while you roll out the dough for the tops roll dough about 1/4 in thick and cut into rounds that fit the top of the tin. Take tins from refrigerator fill with the chocolate or vanilla filling just slightly below the top of the tin. Place the top on, fold in making sure the bottom crust and top crust are joined. Brush with egg wash and place in freezer for a few minutes just to get the pastry cold. Remove from freezer place tins on baking sheet and bake for 30-35 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from oven place on cooling rack and let sit at room temperature for 45 min to an hour or until COMPLETELY COOLED. Gently remove from the tins and refrigerate 4-6 hours or overnight.

Filling

  • Vanilla filling
  • 1/3 cup Flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup Sugar
  • 2 cups milk
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  • 1/8 teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia (Optional)
  • 1 tablespoon Butter
  • Chocolate filling
  • 1 cup Flour
  • 2 cups Sugar
  • 2/3 cup Unsweetened Cocoa powder
  • Pinch of salt
  • 4 cups Warm Milk
  • 2 egg yolks beaten
  • 1 teaspoon Vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon Fiori di Sicilia (optional)
  1. For the chocolate filling in medium saucepan add flour,chocolate, sugar, a pinch of salt and whisk to combine. While whisking add the warm milk and keep whisking until its combined and there are no lumps. Turn flame to medium and whisking constantly cook until mixture thickens, add about 1 cup of hot mixture to beaten egg yolks and add back to saucepan. Continue cooking on medium heat, stirring or whisking constantly until it becomes very thick. It takes a while for the filling to become thick, keep stirring, its a good workout. Once the filling is very thick remove from heat stir in the vanilla, pour through a sieve into a bowl its quite thick so you have to push through the sieve, let cool on counter until room temperature or cool using an ice bath, place plastic wrap directly on top of the filling then refrigerate until completely cool.
  2. For the Vanilla filling: Place flour, sugar and pinch of salt in saucepan add milk and whisk until smooth and there are no lumps. Turn flame on medium and cook whisking constantly. When hot and slightly thick add approximately half of filling to beaten egg yolks add back to saucepan and continue cooking until mixture is thick. Add vanilla and butter and pour and push through sieve into bowl. let come to room temperature or use an ice bath to cool,place plastic wrap directly on top of filling then refrigerate until completely cooled. If adding Fiori di Sicilia add at the end when you add the vanilla.
Jump to Comments (28)

Tags: Italian, pie, tart

Comments (28) Questions (0)

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3 months ago Lori

I recently spent a week in Lecce, Italy in Puglia where they take credit for the original pastichiotta. Being a native of Utica and a fan of the Florentine Pastry Shop, I compared Lecce's version to the Florentine's. Lecce's had a lighter, crispier pastry which I actually prefer. I'll try your recipe and then research some others and see if I can't come close to the Lecce version. Always nice to hear of other Uticans in the world! Ciao!

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3 months ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I am going to research the Lecce version of the crust, the crust on mine and Florentines is almost cake like but a bit crisper. I also would love the lighter crisper pastry. Thanks so much and I wonder if our families knew each other, sadly I have no one left in Utica.

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7 months ago Lisa

I just used your recipe and I have to say I found it confusing. You call for two eggs in the ingredient list, but then indicate that one be beaten with sugar to brush on. In the text, you don't use eggs (plural), so at first my dough was too dry with only the one egg, until I added the second egg. Also, you do not indicate salt in the ingredient list at all, so how does one know how much salt to use?

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7 months ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I am so sorry, it is a recipe that is over 100 years old and was translated from Italian with no or few measurements. I just changed the recipe so that it is a little clearer, the pastry dough calls for 2 eggs so your instinct was exactly correct, you simply use another egg for egg wash. The recipe did not call for salt, my great great grandmother and aunt did not use salt I guess. I didn't use in mine and it tasted fine. You of course could add a pinch of salt or maybe 1/4 tsp if you like. So sorry it's confusing for you.

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about 1 year ago Rick Lambert

my greetings to you all in wherever, i have had this recipe for the pasti chiotti since 1978 or 9. i used to send for them to be delivered to me in san antonio,tx at that time. finally when i visited the bakery for the first time in utica, while attending a 4 day culinary event called a "wedding" italian style, the bakery graciously gave to me the recipe and proper fluted tins in which to be prepared. my recipe is for the deeeeep dark chocolate recipe. i and not sure which bakery it was. does anyone of the blog group know the family of the deceased William J. Zito, with his sister being Sheila , of the los angeles area?

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about 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Hi Rick; We were from Utica so not familiar with Mr. Zito or Sheila but maybe someone else is. Thanks for stopping by. The chocolate is my favorite.

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over 1 year ago rick kovac

I have gone to the florentine bakery every good friday for the past 15 years. I buy 12 pastis and 12 cannolis every time. Then I go to the pulaski meat market on lenox and buy 25 kobasas.

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over 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

We were regulars growing up at Florentine, it's the best! I am sure my Mom remembers Pulaski meat market, I remember fresh chickens and meats. So wonderful!

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about 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I haven't been to Utica for many many years it's good to hear that Florentine is still around and also the Pulaski meat market, I believe that is where my Father always got fresh chickens for our family.

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over 1 year ago Phyllis Donadio Shelton

Darn, I don't do twitter...how can we connect without putting our personal information on here for "all to see?" LOL

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over 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I will send you a direct message from this site with my email address.

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over 1 year ago Phyllis Donadio Shelton

Well, I'll be!! I just had a feeling that by some odd coincidence that you might have been related to him. We used to chat about Utica and all the goodies at the Florentine Bakery. Yes, it would be something if we were realated! I don't know if you do Facebook, but if so I am on there.


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over 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I loved Florentine I remember it well, my recipe for yellow cake was created to replicate Florentine Bakery;s yellow cake, their Boston Cream Pie was my absolute favorite. We have to talk. I am not on Facebook, I closed my account but I am on twitter.

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over 1 year ago Phyllis Donadio Shelton

My relatives in Utica were the Macrino family. She is the 96 year old cousin I mentioned. We were from Herkimer originally. My husband had a physical therapist after knee surgery in 2005 and the man's last name was Debrango and he was originally from Utica. I think he lived in Chesapeake Va at the time. We were in Virginia Beach, Va at the time. Any relation? How great that you got to meet an unknown cousin while shopping for your daughter's wedding gown. Ironically, my step-grandson's fianace just went to Kleinfeld's and bought her wedding gown about a month ago. More coincidences!!! This is fun!!

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over 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thats my cousin James, he is a physical therapist and lives in Virginia. I can't believe this, what a small world it is!

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over 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I will ask my Mom if she remembers the Macrino's wouldn't it be funny if our families were friends.

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over 1 year ago Phyllis Donadio Shelton

sdebrango...Was thrilled to read your comment...what a small world we live in. What a wonderful treasure you have there with your recipe handed down from your great-grandmother and also translated from Italian. Thank you so much for sharing and also for your reply.

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over 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

It's a very small world, I wonder if our families knew each other. Wouldn't that be amazing. Short story, when we were shopping for my daughters wedding gown we went to Kleinfelds and the consultant they assigned to us had the same last name as me, it turned out she is a cousin I had never met, she was also from Utica but lives in NJ now. I was so shocked and amazed.

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over 1 year ago Phyllis Donadio Shelton

I was so pleased to find your recipe for the 'pusties.' I have a recipe that my 96 year old cousin from Utica NY gave me and it sounds very close to yours. I will try yours as well. Thank yo so much

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over 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Oh wow, I was born in Utica, it's where I first tasted them. This is the recipe my Aunt made which was handed down to her by my Great Grandmother, hand written in Italian, my Aunt had to convert from Italian to English and interpret the ingredients and amounts. I do hope you like it!

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over 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I made these in fluted tartlet tins, have yet to purchase pustie tins they turn out beautifully. I also made some with fiori di sicilia and some without I actually prefer without.

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over 3 years ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

OMG, this is as lovely as I had hoped it would be. I'm so happy you had the original framed - brilliant! I'll try it as soon as you post your final results. I can't believe you had so much trouble finding lard, but I am sure most worth the trouble.

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over 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Thank you, yes my cousin was so thrilled to recieve the recipe, she has it hanging in her kitchen. She was very close to her mother who passed a few years ago and this was an unexpected and wonderful gift to her.
With regards to the recipe. I have to do some research on how to use lard in pastry crust. I am a little perplexed by the two recipes for the pastry. The first one uses no liquid and normally you add cold water. The second uses less lard than I thought you would when the flour is 4 cups and it uses milk. So I've some major testing to do good thing I bought 10 pounds of lard.

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over 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

The only lard I found was in the supermarket and I didn't want to use that. I specifically wanted leaf lard thats what was recommended when I posted the food pickle question a few months ago. I didn't have time to scour the city on my quest to find lard so it was nice to know I wasn't the only one that had difficulty procuring it. Finally in Pennsylvannia I found it and its leaf lard from what sounds like a lovely farm I think in Amish Country. We'll see how it is when I get it but have a lot of homework to do before I start baking.

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about 1 year ago Rick Lambert

i had a deli in san diego in the early 80's., and i served these wonderful chocolate wonders from the tim forms using a mix of lard , shortning and butter. my origional recipe from utica called for only lard..

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about 1 year ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

Hi Rick; Yes my recipe uses only lard in the pastry. It really makes it tender and delicious. Thank you!

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over 3 years ago sdebrango

Suzanne is a trusted source on General Cooking.

I just ordered some I found it at King Arthur Flour the bakers catalog. I could never quite put my finger on the taste that was prevalent in some Italian pastries now know what it is. You can go to bakerscatalog.com to find it. Thanks.

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over 3 years ago Sadassa_Ulna

I love your headnote and now I want to find some fiori di sicilia . . .