Tag Archives: Almonds

Torta Tal-Marmurat ~ Almond and Chocolate Tart

Torta Tal-Marmurat
Torta Tal-Marmurat

Hello again!  I hope you’re all having a lovely summer whatever you’re doing and wherever you are. I know Summer is all about salads and baking is probably the last thing on anybody’s mind in this heat, but I’m a baker at heart and nothing, not even the worst heatwave will deter me from my beloved oven.

So since my last post, I have been working hard on this recipe, trying to get it the way I remember it to be growing up.  There are a few recipes online that looked promising but somehow neither of them seemed to be authentic to my memory…so after about a dozen try outs, and with the help of all my friends who have tried this and given me their honest opinions, I think I am ready to post it.

Nanna Kelina
Nanna Kelina

This recipe has a special place in my heart as it reminds me of my beloved nanna.  Every Saturday, I used to stop by the Kiosk at the entrance of Valletta and get one to take to her on my way home from the disco (ha ha…disco…those were the days).  Then we’d sit down and have a cuppa tea and a chat together while we shared the pastry. To tell the truth, I always ended up eating most of the tart as it was my favourite but Nanna didn’t seem to mind and we were both glad of the chance to spend some time together.

I have to say that this is a very rich dessert and a little goes a long way.  One 4″ tart serves 6-8 people.  They are usually sold in little four inch tarts but you can make one big tart if you prefer. This recipe makes exactly four 4″ tarts.


200g flour
50g butter
50g shortening
grated rind of half a lemon
1 egg yolk
pinch of salt
little bit of milk

Torta Tal-Marmurat
Torta Tal-Marmurat


75g almond meal
50g pure ground almonds
75g crushed rusks
60g chopped candied peel
1tbsp marmalade
1 egg
50g sugar
1/2 cup orange juice
12g cocoa powder
pinch of cinnamon and cloves optional

Fudge Frosting

50g of bittersweet dark chocolate
50g sugar
2 tbsp milk
2 tbsp butter 


Ready to Bake


Make the crust by putting the dry ingredients in a bowl.  Rub in the butter and shortening. Add the egg yolk and bind until the dough comes together nicely.  Add some milk if you see the dough is too dry.


Put everything in a bowl and mix together.

Using your dish of choice, roll out the dough and place in your dish.  Add the filling and bake in 375 degree oven for about 20 mins depending on your oven.

Fudge Frosting
Fudge Frosting

Prepare the Fudge Frosting

Put the chocolate, sugar, milk and butter in a pot and stir until melted.  When the pies are done, cover with the frosting.

Let cool until the frosting sets.

This is a very heavy type dessert so a little goes a long way.  Best served with some strong black coffee or espresso.


Torta Tal-Marmurat

One tip I have for you is to make your own candied peel…it takes time, about three days to make it from start to finish, but it does not compare to what you get from the store.

Pastini Di Mandorla ~ Almond Cookies

Pastini Di Mandorla
Pastini Di Mandorla

Aaron once asked me if almonds were a national source of income in Malta.  I wondered how he’d come to that conclusion until he pointed out that the desserts I tend to make always have some kind of  almonds or marzipan in them.  It is quite true that I do do that, but I think the reason why I love working with almonds so much is because they are so darn good.

Blanched Almonds
Blanched Almonds

Pastini Di Mandorla means Almond Cookie and it is another recipe I love to make from the book by Edward Calleja Success Bil-Helu 2, the other one being Pastini Bic-Cirasa…not only because they are super delicious, but also because they are a cinch to make.  

They require only one egg white, which means, you’re not left wondering what to do with so many  left over egg yolks.  Even better,  if you use liquid egg whites, then you’re left with no egg yolks at all!!

Also, as opposed to other almond cookies, these require no drying time at all…so if you fancy these cookies at 2pm, you can be happily eating them by 3pm.


Pastini Di Mandorla
Pastini Di Mandorla

200g pure ground almond
200g powdered sugar
zest of a lemon
one egg
one tsp almond essence
one egg white beaten for dipping
about 3/4 slivered almonds to use as topping
rice paper (optional if you use a silpat)


Preheat the oven to 350 degrees

Place the rice paper if using, on the baking dish.

Mix all the ingredients except for the slivered almonds together in a bowl to form a ball.  Do not be tempted to add more liquid as this is supposed to be on a dry side. If you add more liquid, the cookies will flatten and you don’t want that.  If you see that the result is too sticky, add more ground almonds.

Cut the mixture into four equal pieces. Roll into four long ropes.  Cut into two inch pieces.

Form into crescents.

Beat the egg white in a small bowl.  Place the slivered almonds in a flat plate.

Dip the crescents in the egg white, then again in the slivered almonds and then place on the prepared baking dish.

Bake for 15 mins until just golden.

Cool on wire tray and sprinkle some powdered sugar for presentation.

Pastini Di Mandorla

Next time I see Aaron, I’ll be making these for him!