Torta al Taglierini

Some say this cake was made using fresh thin strands of pasta in tribute to the beautiful hair of Lucrezia Borge who married into the powerful ruling d¹Este family but every portrait I have seen of her shows her with dark hair!


  • Pasta Frolla
  • 1 cup unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup cake flour
  • 1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons cold unslated butter, cut into bits
  • 1 large egg
  • None
  • Tagliarini Dough
  • makes 1/2 pound dough
  • None
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 cup plus 2 tablespoons unbleached all purpose flour
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • None
  • Filling
  • 4 ounces slivered blanched almonds, processed into a powder
  • 6 ounces mixed candied fruit peels. diced
  • 2 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup light cream
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract or 1 tablespoon of Amaretto
  • None
  • None


  1. Butter a 9 or 10 1/2 x 3-inch deep springform pan, dust it with flour and set aside.
  2. For the pastry dough, place the flour, sugar, salt and butter in the bowl of a food  processor fitted with the metal blade and pulse until the mixture looks mealy. Add the egg and process until a ball begins to form. Remove and gather dough together. Place in plastic wrap and chill at least an hour or overnight.
  3. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  4. Roll the pastry dough out onto a floured surface or between two sheets of parchment paper into an 18-inch diameter and line the pan bringing the dough 2 inches up the sides. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to use.  
  5. Mix the taglierini dough ingredients together and knead until smooth.  Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let it rest while you make the filling.
  6. For the filling, beat the butter and sugar together until very light and fluffy.  Add the candied fruit and the two eggs and mix until the eggs are well incorporated.  Mix in the cream and the Amaretto.  Add the cocoa powder and the ground almonds and mix by hand.  Set aside.
  7. Flatten the taglierini dough until it is thin enough to feed through the pasta machine.  Continue to thin the dough until you can see the shape of your hand through the dough.  Then fit the pasta machine with the vermicelli cutter.   Feed the dough through the cutter and divide the noodles roughly in half.  Take the first half of the noodles and sprinkle them evenly over the pastry in the bottom of the spring-form pan.  Then add the filling and smooth the top, spreading it to fill to the edges.  Then sprinkle the rest of the noodles loosely over the filling.
  8. Cut a piece of parchment paper to fit the inside of the spring-form pan and spray or brush the paper with olive oil.  Fit it over the top of the noodles with the oiled side down.  Bake the torta for 30 to 35 minutes, until the noodles on top are slightly browned.  
  9. Cut into thin wedges and serve.

This recipe was featured on Season 26 - Episode 2603.

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