Recipe courtesy of David Rocco

Cassata Rustica

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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr 15 min
  • Prep: 15 min
  • Inactive: 1 hr
  • Yield: 8 to 10 servings
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2 pounds 3 1/4 ounces/1 kg fresh ricotta cheese

7 ounces/200 g semisweet chocolate, chopped

7 ounces/200 g candied fruit, such as oranges, chopped

5 tablespoons granulated sugar

1 store-bought pie shell, baked and cooled in pie plate 

Sponge cake, sliced, or savoiardi cookies (ladyfinger cookies)

1/2 cup rum

3 tablespoons icing sugar


  1. Mix together the ricotta, chocolate, candied fruit and 4 tablespoons of the granulated sugar in a mixing bowl, and then spread evenly into the pie crust. Lay slices of sponge cake on top of the filling close to the crust. Heat 1/2 cup water in a saucepot, and then remove from the heat and stir in the remaining 1 tablespoon granulated sugar and the rum. Lightly coat the sponge cake with the rum water using a pastry brush. Place a plate on top of the cake and then invert and sprinkle with the icing sugar. Refrigerate 1 hour and serve.