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Pies and Tarts
Italian rice and ricotta single crust pie
Torta di Riso (Single crust Italian ricotta pie using breadcrumbs; with rice, milk, amaretti cookies, lemon zest and rum)
Originated from: Emilia Romagna
Occasion: Easter; holidays
Contributed by: Anna-Maria Benvenuto

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For bottom pie crust
Breadcrumbs [about 1 1/2 cups]
a knob of butter [about 3 tablespoons, softened]

For filling
300 grams (about 10 1/2 ounces) raw rice
100 grams (about 3 1/2 ounces) sugar
1 liter (about 1 quart) of milk
a pinch of salt
2 whole eggs
2 eggs, separated
An envelop of powdered vanilla [about 1 teaspoon liquid vanilla extract]
Zest of 1 lemon
200 grams (about 7 ounces) of amaretti cookies
1 shot [1 1/2 oz.] of rum


o Combine milk with sugar, salt, vanilla and half the lemon zest.

o Cook the rice in the milk mixture.

o Finely chop the amaretti cookies.

o Combine the hot cooked rice with the chopped amaretti cookies. Cool.

o Separate the yolk and egg whites of 2 eggs.

o Whip the egg whites until stiff.

o Meanwhile, combine two whole eggs, rum, and the remaining lemon zest and mix well.

o Combine the whole egg mixture with the cooked rice mixture.

o Fold in the beaten egg whites.

o To make the pie crust combine the breadcrumbs with the softened butter line the pie dish.

o Cook in a moderate oven until the mixture is cooked through -- about 20 to 30 minutes.


Mrs. Anna-Maria Benvenuto has collected hundreds of recipes from relatives, friends, and neighbors over the years. She recorded the recipes in Italian in numerous notebooks, often naming the recipe after the person who gave it to her. Mrs. Anna-Maria Benvenuto also copied recipes from Italian cookbooks, magazines and newspapers. The recipe in this entry was found in an Italian cookbook published in the early 1970s. Being an avid baker Mrs. Benvenuto tried out many of the recipes herself. However, because of her enormous talent and expertise, she did not feel the need to write detailed instructions as she knew how to make the recipes without them. However, when asked by this website's archivist (Mary Melfi) for details, she quickly volunteered the information. Nonetheless, as with most first generation Italian-Canadian handwritten recipes, it is understood that whoever attempts to duplicate them should have some knowledge of what they are doing.... Photo: Mary Melfi

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