Torta della Nonna with a Sprinkling of Powdered Sugar

Torta della Nonna

Do you want to bake something very simple, delicious but without anything too complicated?

Here is the ” Torta della Nonna“, a shortcrust pastry shell with a filling of a flavorful pastry cream (crema pasticcera), covered with pine nuts and a sprinkling of powdered sugar.

Torta della Nonna with a Sprinkling of Powdered Sugar

                                                          Buonissima !!!!

No one really knows the exact recipe, we only know that there are these ingredients, shortcrust pastry, crema pasticcera, and pine nuts.

We do not know if it is from Florence or from Arezzo, we attribute the paternity to a restaurateur from Florence, Guido Samorini, to satisfy the palate of his clients who asked for something new.

torta della nonna 6

And it is said that at the death of Samorini the recipe was entrusted to one of his helpers in the kitchen who has kept the secret so well that she has not shared the recipe with anyone.

So, there are so many imitations and customizations of this cake.

We can say that each of us creates this cake hoping that it will come out like his.😜

It is ideal for breakfast, snack, but also for the most special occasions such as Easter.

Torta della Nonna with a Sprinkling of Powdered Sugar

Prep Time50 mins
Cook Time50 mins
Resting Time1 hr
Course: Dessert
Keyword: cake for any occasion, creamy, italian dessert, pastry cream
Servings: 4


  • cake pan 6 inches


  • pine nuts
  • powdered sugar

French Shortcrust Pastry (Pate` Sablee)

  • 175 g flour 00 6.2 oz
  • 75 g powdered sugar 2.6 oz
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 100 g cold butter 3.5 oz
  • a pinch of salt

Pastry Cream

  • 3 egg yolk
  • 70 g sugar 2.46 oz
  • 30 g corn starch 2.5 tbsp
  • 250 ml whole milk 1 cup
  • 1 scraped vanilla bean
  • 1 grated lemon peel


French Shortcrust Pastry (Pate` Sablee)

  • Put the flour, sugar, and butter, cut in small pieces, in a food processor
    until they become a sandy mixture.
  • Put the mixture over on a pastry board; dig a hole in the center of the mixture and add the egg yolks, and salt.
  • Using a fork, beat together the eggs and begin to incorporate the mixture of flour, starting with the inner rim of the hole.
  • Knead everything until you get a smooth and homogeneous dough.
  • Wrap the dough in transparent paper and put in the fridge for 1 hr.

Pastry Cream

  • Put the milk with the scraped vanilla pod in a small saucepan, and bring it to a boil.
  • Remove the pan from the stove and filter the milk.
  • Separately, in a bowl pour the egg yolks, the vanilla caviar, sugar, and the grated zest.
  • Whisk vigorously until completely combined.
  • When the mixture is blended, add the cornstarch sieved in, stir well to incorporate it.
  • Pour the milk into the mixture of egg yolks, sugar, and rice starch.
  • Put on the stove and stir constantly with a whisk (the egg begins to coagulate at 52 °C (125.6°F) temperature; the cooking  should stop when it reaches just 67°C (152.6°F).
  • Remove the cream from the stove as soon as it starts to thicken.
  • Cool it quickly by pouring it into a cold pan and continue to stir with a whisk bringing it to a temperature below 50°C (122°F), this allows it to maintain the consistency of the cream intact.
  • Cover with plastic wrap in contact with the surface of the cream, let it finish cooling at room temperature.


  • Remove the pastry from the fridge, divide it in two, work one piece with a rolling pin to form a 1/2 cm (0.2 inch) thick disk to line the greased and floured baking pan.
  • Cut the excess of shortcrust with a knife.
  • Prick the dough with the tines of a fork without piercing it all the way.
  • Pour in it the cream pastry and level it with the help of a spoon.
  • Roll out the remaining pastry disk to an 0.2-inch-thick circle and set it over the levelled cream.
  • Seal the edges by pressing them lightly with the tines of a fork.
  • Brush the surface with beaten egg.
  • Sprinkle with pine nuts and bake it in the preheat oven at 168°C (335°F) for 45-50 minutes.
  • After letting it cool completely, serve it by sprinkling it with powdered sugar.


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