Pasta frolla is the go-to pastry dough of Italian baking. The phrase means short pastry, and you might find it reminds you more of shortbread cookie dough than of typical American pie dough. It is rich, sweet, buttery, slightly citrusy, flaky, and a little bit crumbly. It can be used in a range of baked goods, including pies, tarts, and crostatas, as well as cookies and bars. Modern recipes call for using a food processor, but I love the sensual satisfaction of making it the way my grand-mother did–by hand. If you do too, I hope you’ll enjoy this recipe.
makes two crusts
- 1 c. all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling out
- 2 egg yolks
- 1 stick butter, cut into sm. pieces, softened
- 1/2 c. powdered sugar
- 1/4 tsp vanilla extract
- 1/4 tsp lemon zest, freshly grated may substitute orange zest if you prefer
- ≤ 4 tbsp milk
Sift flour on pastry board. Form well in center of flour. Drop in egg yolks.
Blend in butter pieces with pastry blender or fork until mixture resembles coarse meal. Mix in sugar, vanilla, and zest.
Gradually blend in milk, tbsp by tbsp, until dough holds together.
Gently knead into ball. Do not overwork.
Use immediately; or divide if you prefer, wrap in plastic wrap, freeze until day before use, and thaw overnight in fridge.
I fell in love with travel on a trip to Mexico when I was nine years old. Since then, I’ve travelled the globe from Israel to El Salvador. I’ve skied the Swiss Alps and hiked national parks like Acadia, Zion, Shenandoah, and Virgin Islands. I’ve marvelled at masterpieces in the Prado, the Uffizi, the Huntington, and the National Gallery of Art. I’ve stayed in a cabin on a mountaintop in Norway and on a kibbutz along the Sea of Galilee, and been kicked out of the Ritz at the Place Vendôme. I’ve taken cooking classes from New England to the Caribbean, and watched a chef prepare traditional shakshuka in the kitchen of his restaurant in Tel Aviv. I weave historical research and my personal experiences together in writing this blog. I hope you find it helpful. Read more …