Cavolo Nero and Ricotta Tart

By • March 6, 2011 29 Comments

104 + Save

If you like it, save it!

Save and organize all of the stuff you love in one place.

Got it!

If you like something…

Click the heart, it's called favoriting. Favorite the stuff you like.

Got it!

Author Notes: This tart is perfect for breakfast, lunch or dinner or, maybe, even all three on the same day. Cavolo nero is also known as Lacinato or dinosaur kale. It is becoming ever more popular not only for its great taste but for its presumed health benefits too. The crust for this tart uses the idea of a shortbread crust to keep it tender while using whole wheat pastry and buckwheat flours. I like to serve the tart with a fruit salad of grapefruit supremes, toasted crushed hazelnuts and mint. While this has many healthy components they are just a nice side benefit to the decadence of this wonderful tart.thirschfeld

Serves 6 to 8

For the crust:

  • 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
  • 1/4 cup buckwheat flour
  • 1/4 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
  • two finger pinch of salt

For the filling

  • 1 bunch Cavolo nero, chopped, rinsed and dried, 8 loose cups worth
  • 1 cup yellow onion, peeled, small dice
  • 2 teaspoons fresh garlic, minced
  • 3 anchovy filets, minced
  • 1 1/4 cups whole milk ricotta
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup parmesan cheese, grated
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
  • 1/4 cup water
  • kosher salt and fresh ground pepper
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Place the whole wheat pastry flour, buckwheat, parmesan, butter and salt into a large mixing bowl and stir it with a wooden spoon until it looks like a combination of cous cous and cornmeal. You may need to rub some of the bigger pieces between you hands to break up the butter.
  3. Dump the crumbs into an 8 inch tart pan. Starting at the edges press the crumbs into the flutes. Use you index finger as a back stop by placing it at the top of the flute and pushing the flour up to it. Pack the crust tightly and evenly. Once you have finished the crust bake it in the oven for 20 minutes. Remove it from the oven.
  4. While the crust is baking heat the olive oil and butter over medium heat in a 12 inch saute pan. Add the onions, anchovies and garlic. Season them with a little salt and fresh ground pepper. Saute them gently without coloring and until they are soft. You may need to adjust the heat and you will want to stir them to keep them from coloring.
  5. Once the onions are soft add the Cavolo nero and toss and stir it to coat it with oil. Season again with a little salt and fresh ground pepper. Add the water and cover the pan. Let the Cavolo nero steam until tender but still vibrant in color, about 8 minutes over medium heat.
  6. In a large mixing bowl combine the ricotta, parmesan and the eggs. Add a 1/2 teaspoon of salt and a few grinds of pepper and stir to combine.
  7. Once the Cavolo nero is tender taste it and adjust the seasoning as necessary. Make sure all the water has simmered away from the Cavolo nero, you don't want it to be to wet. Let it cool for a couple of minutes and then add it to the ricotta and stir it well to combine.
  8. Carefully spoon the filling into the tart and smooth and level it out. Place the tart into the oven and bake it for 50 to 60 minutes or until set and nicely browned.
  9. When the top has browned remove the tart from the oven and let it cool to room temperature before cutting. Serve at room temperature.

More Great Recipes: Fish & Seafood|Vegetables|Breakfast & Brunch|Pies & Tarts|Cheese & Dairy

💬 View Comments ()

Comments (29) Questions (0)


about 1 month ago Robin J

Made this tonight. The crust didn't really work for us (too coarse, too thick), but I did like the buckwheat flavor. I think next time I will make a more traditional crust and sub in a bit of buckwheat. The filling was fantastic (which is why I'll be making it again). The kale got dark and almost crisp, which is what I really loved about it.


7 months ago Heather

I don't know if I'll make an anemic all purpose flour crust for anything savory, after making this. I love the texture and flavor the crust adds to this dish. I also love the lightness of the ricotta, rather than heaps of other heavy cheeses. Nicely balanced; filling, healthy and tasty.


almost 4 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

Made this again last night . . . . no buckwheat flour in the cupboard, so I used half barley and half AP. Subbed pecorino romano and a hard Spanish sheep's milk cheese for the parmesan. Used Jennifer Perillo's homemade ricotta (made a few minutes before!!) Required only 45 minutes to cook. Let it rest for ten minutes, and served it warm for dinner with roasted butternut squash and lightly sauteed, unsweetened Fuji apple slices. Perfect fall dinner!! ;o)


almost 4 years ago thirschfeld

The squash and apples sound great AJ. I've been busy lately and haven't been around much. I was just saying to the Mrs. I need to make this soon, then your message popped up. Guess it is time.


about 4 years ago arielleclementine

we had this for dinner tonight (with your recommended grapefruit salad on the side) - wonderful! lovely tart with an especially lovely crust! thanks for the recipe :)


about 4 years ago thirschfeld

Thank you arielleclementine so glad you enjoyed it . I was just thinking about the tart the other day and can't wait for my kale from the garden to be ready.


over 4 years ago Jaynerly

This sounds so good! I will be growing Cavalo Nero this summer, cant wait to use it in this tart!


over 4 years ago TheWimpyVegetarian

I've yet to try buckwheat in bread or crusts, and can see I need to correct this oversight! I love this recipe!


over 4 years ago AntoniaJames

AntoniaJames is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

On the menu tomorrow . . . don't have any buckwheat and current pace of client work means no time to shop, either, so will probably substitute 1/2 barley and 1/2 pumpernickel (rough rye). I am so looking forward to this. And I know the family is going to love it. Will buy buckwheat next time I go to The Food Mill. Very tricky to use, though, as I suspect you're figuring out. ;o)


over 4 years ago Sadassa_Ulna

This sounds (and looks) amazing!


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

Thank you Sadassa-Ulna


over 4 years ago SaltHands

everything about this sounds wonderful, but that crust in particular sounds amazing. I am such a sucker for buckwheat. And parmesan.


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

Thanks SaltHands, buckwheat might be my favorite ingredient at the moment.


over 4 years ago TasteFood

I am a kale fan. And I love your use of buckwheat flour. Nice recipe!


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

Thanks TasteFood but back at ya. I have been really enjoying your blog posts of late. Great work!


over 4 years ago lastnightsdinner

This looks fantastic. I love cavolo nero, and love your use of whole wheat and buckwheat flours in the crust.


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

thanks lastnightsdinner. I was just over on twitter and I hope to see a recipe and photo of that rascally rabbit.


over 4 years ago hardlikearmour

hardlikearmour is a trusted home cook.

Love the kale! Have a packet of Nero Di Toscana seeds from Territorial that I can't wait to plant. Did you make your own ricotta?


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

I have grown kale in the past and this year I plan to grow Nero too. I did not make my own ricotta but I have made ricotta in the past. There is a great recipe on food52 by Jennifer Perillo for homemade ricotta under her recipe for manicotti


over 4 years ago Sunchowder

Wowsa! This looks so yummy!!! :)


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

thank you Sunchowder


over 4 years ago Kiss My Braciola Goodbye

You never fail to bring it on. Off to the market as soon as I stop choking on my saliva!


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

thank you and if you make it let me know how you like it


over 4 years ago boulangere

Cynthia is a trusted source on Bread/Baking.

This looks fantastic! Love the buckwheat in the crust and ricotta in the filling.


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

thank you boulangere


over 4 years ago drbabs

Barbara is a trusted source on General Cooking.



over 4 years ago thirschfeld

thanks drbabs


over 4 years ago healthierkitchen

Mmmmmm. I love your crust! I have some buckwheat flour that I bought for a Kim Boyce recipe.


over 4 years ago thirschfeld

I love buckwheat flour and Good to the Grain is awesome too