A heart of ricotta - The Sicilian Cassata

Un cuore di ricotta - La Cassata Siciliana
The Sicilian cassata is a traditional cake made with ricotta cheese, sponge cake, marzipan and candied fruit, and is among the most famous sweets of the island, together with the cannolo.
The history of the origin of cassata leads to the Arab domination in Sicily (11th century). The Arabs had imported various products, including pistachios , citrus fruits and almonds .
According to tradition, one night a shepherd decided to mix sheep's milk ricotta with sugar, and he called this dessert "quas'at" ("basin"), from the name of the bowl in which the dough was contained.

The colorful variant known to the general public today is the result of an evolution that continued in the Norman era with the invention, at the Martorana convent in Palermo, of marzipan marzipan, made from almond flour.
Initially the cassata was a product of the great confectionary tradition of the Sicilian nuns and was reserved for the Easter period.
“Tintu è cu nun mancia a cassata a matina ri Pasqua” (“Mean who doesn't eat cassata on Easter morning”), says an ancient saying of the island.
And, indeed, whether it's Easter or Christmas, from Trapani to Syracuse, how can you say no to this extraordinary triumph of sweetness?

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