Torta di riso (o degli Addobbi)

Filippo Trapella shares his recipe for torta di riso, a delicious Italian rice cake flavoured with candied citron, vanilla and powdered amaretti biscuits. To give the cake its traditional sticky crust, Fillipo glazes it with Amaretto, before chilling it for several hours.

First published in 2016
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This Emilian Torta di riso or 'Torta degli Addobbi' in Italian, is a simple and tasty dessert from Bologna. This cake was originally prepared for the Addobbi festivity – an old feast day to celebrate the anniversary of a Parish – but today it can be found all year round. Arborio rice is slowly cooked in milk and spices, then baked until soft and springy. The liquor is brushed over the cake while it is still hot in order to obtain the characteristic sticky crust. Serve the rice cake cold, after a few hours in the fridge.




Rice cake


Pour the chilled milk into a medium saucepan along with the vanilla pod and scraped out seeds, lemon peel and sugar
Place the saucepan over a low heat and slowly bring the milk to a gentle simmer then add the rice and cook until well done, but not mushy, which should take about 30 minutes. Then set aside to cool
Meanwhile, crush the amaretti biscuits to a powder (by hand or in a food processor). Coarsely grind the almonds to a sandy rubble
Remove the vanilla pod and lemon peel from the rice mixture and add the beaten eggs, candied citron, crushed amaretti, coarsely ground almonds and a pinch of salt. Stir the mixture well, then transfer to a large mixing bowl
Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4
Let the mixture come to room temperature, stirring occasionally. Pour the mixture into a 9 x 9 inch (23 x 23cm) baking tray lined with baking paper
Place in the preheated oven for about 60–70 minutes. To check if the rice cake is perfectly cooked, insert a toothpick into the middle of the cake, if it comes out dry then the cake is ready
Turn off the oven, remove the cake and immediately brush with the Amaretto, then leave the cake to rest in the warm oven with the door slightly ajar for a few minutes
When the cake has reached room temperature, place it in the fridge for at least 5 hours before cutting into portions to serve

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Born and raised in Bologna, Filippo is a food blogger and supper club host with a passion for traditional Italian dishes.

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