Torta 900 is a cake we knew by name, even before we arrived in Piedmont. Indeed, the name of this unique dessert, produced by Pasticceria Balla in Ivrea, resounds throughout Italy: its recipe, which dates back to the 19th century, is secret: its creator is pastry chef Ottavio Bertinotti.
The obstacle of distance can be easily overcome: starting from Turin, you just have to stop there every time you’re heading North and slowly taste your slice of cake, to preserve the sensations until the next visit; after all, a cake which recipe is secret it’s not worth it to be tried at least once?
But is it really as good as they say? Made of two thin cocoa soft and airy layers (similar to biscuit sponge cake) stuffed with a generous but delicate cocoa and hazelnut filling, the result is a dessert as simple as unforgettable, evidence that techniques and good quality ingredients are worth more than many other factors. To complete the cake, filled at the moment to keep the freshness of ingredients intact, a bit of powdered sugar.
And if you think that just one cake is not worth the distance, there is also Dama Bianca, the “shy cousin” of Torta 900. Basically, it is its white version: it’s made of two layers of the same dough (but without cocoa), filled with a delicious white chocolate cream and covered by some icing sugar (if you know it, it’s a better version of Italian Kinder Paradiso). If you have a sweet tooth, you will literally love it.
We have nothing else to add. If you love desserts and you haven’t been at Pasticceria Balla yet, do it as sooner as possible, especially if you are nearby Piedmont. Distant from modern pastries and sugar paste, these two cakes are the proof that often
simpler is better
Where: Corso Re Umberto, 16, 10015 Ivrea (Turin)