Crostata with Butternut Squash, Kale and Maple Ricotta

This recipe, from the William Penn High School, features fresh ingredients from the school's farm, made by the students in the school's kitchen, and served to the school's students. 

Photography By Matt Amis | December 14, 2017

Ingredients

Dough
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Filling
  • Unsalted butter, softened, for the sheet pan
  • 1 pound peeled butternut squash, small diced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for cooking water
  • 1 bunch kale, stemmed and chopped (about 8 cups)
  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh maple ricotta (about 2 ½ cups)
  • 2 cups grated Parmesan
  • 2 bunches scallions, white and green parts, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
Maple Ricotta
  • 1 gallon whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2⁄3 cups lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup

Preparation

For the dough, in a food processor, combine the flour and salt and pulse to mix. In a liquid measuring cup, whisk together the olive oil and 1⁄3 cup cold water. With the machine running, pour in the liquids and process until a soft dough forms on the blade, about 30 seconds. If the dough is still crumbly, add some water. If it is too wet, add a bit of flour. Take dough and place on a floured countertop, and knead until it just comes together. Wrap in plastic wrap, and let rest at room temperature for 30 minutes (this can be made the night before and kept in the fridge).

Preheat oven to 350°. Toss the butternut squash with the olive oil and a bit of salt and pepper. Place in a roasting pan lined with parchment paper and roast for 20 minutes (it will continue to cook when we bake the crostata). Leave to cool slightly.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil and add the kale. Simmer until just tender, about 10 minutes. Rinse, drain, cool, and squeeze very dry and finely chop the kale. Add to the bowl, along with the maple ricotta, grated cheese, scallions, eggs, milk cream and 1 teaspoon salt. Mix well.

On a floured work surface, roll the dough to a rectangle 2 inches longer and wider than the sheet pan. Center the dough in the pan, and press to fit. Spread the filling into the crust, and fold the edges of the crust back over to create the sides of the crostata. Bake until the crust is deep golden brown and the filling is set, about 50 minutes. Let cook and enjoy.
 

Maple Ricotta
In a large Dutch oven or deep pot, heat milk and salt to 185°, stirring frequently to avoid burning. Remove from heat and pour in lemon juice. Let sit for 25 minutes while curds separate and form. Do not disturb.

Line a large strainer with a double layer of cheese cloth, placing them over a deep bowl. Slowly pour cheese mixture into the strainer lined with cheesecloth and allow to drain, about 10-15 minutes or until the liquid no longer strains freely. Place in a large bowl. Fold in maple syrup. Do not mix too much, just enough to incorporate. Place in sealed containers and let chill for two hours.

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Ingredients

Dough
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more for rolling
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
Filling
  • Unsalted butter, softened, for the sheet pan
  • 1 pound peeled butternut squash, small diced
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, plus more for cooking water
  • 1 bunch kale, stemmed and chopped (about 8 cups)
  • 1 1/2 pounds fresh maple ricotta (about 2 ½ cups)
  • 2 cups grated Parmesan
  • 2 bunches scallions, white and green parts, chopped (about 2 cups)
  • 3 large eggs, beaten
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
Maple Ricotta
  • 1 gallon whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2⁄3 cups lemon juice
  • 2 tablespoons maple syrup
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