Spar for the Spurtle Recap: Italian Pinhead Torta

We are so pleased to announce that Laurie Figone won first place in Spar for the Spurtle 2 on Friday. All three of the contenders delivered delicious and beautiful dishes and I think the judges had their work cut out for them. Ultimately, the panel of celebrity judges selected Figone’s recipe as the winner based on taste, creativity and overall presentation. The judges – New York Times “Recipe for Health” columnist Martha Rose Shulman; food journalist, best-selling author and former Iron Chef America judge Kim Sunée; and Whole Living magazine Executive Editor Jocelyn Zuckerman – said the decision was a tough one, but that Figone’s dish really shined.

“Wow, winning a competition like this is truly a dream come true for me!” said an emotional Figone following the competition. “I am just so excited to go to Scotland and compete in the World Porridge Championship on behalf of Bob’s Red Mill, and I thank Bob and everyone at the company for the opportunity.”

We wish Laurie the best of luck in the coming months as she prepares to take her dish to the international stage at the 19th Annual Golden Spurtle World Porridge Championship in October. Below is her winning recipe (watch her video here). From here, she plans to create a tomato coulis to top this dish and will begin honing her traditional porridge skills. We’ll share the tomato coulis when we get it, but for now, enjoy! [Note: This recipe can easily be made gluten free by using our Gluten Free Steel Cut Oats.]

UPDATE: Laurie took the Speciality Award with this recipe at the 2012 Golden Spurtle. Congrats Laurie!!

Italian Pinhead Torta | Bob's Red Mill

Italian Pinhead Torta

My recipe for ‘Italian Pinhead Torta’ is reminiscent of a torta my Mother-in-Law used to make with white rice, eggs, oregano and Parmesan cheese.

By substituting Bob’s Red Mill Steel Cut Oats (or ‘pinheads’ as they are commonly called) for the rice, my torta now has an incredible texture that I love!!  I have also added fresh zucchini, sun-dried tomatoes for a hint of sweetness, mushrooms for their earthiness, fresh oregano to awaken your taste buds and Parmesan cheese to bring it all together!!


Servings:  12
Cook Time:  15 minutes

  • 1 oz. dried Portabella mushrooms, rehydrated in 1-½ cups boiling water for 10 minutes (reserving the liquid to soak the oats in).  After soaking; drain, squeeze dry and dice mushrooms.
  • 1-½ cups Bob’s Red Mill Steel Cut Oats (also known as pinhead oats) soaked in reserved mushroom liquid for 10 minutes.
  • 6 Tbsp Butter, divided
  • 1 cup diced Onion
  • 1 cup coarsely shredded Zucchini
  • ½ cup diced Sun Dried Tomatoes in olive oil, drained
  • 6 Eggs, room temperature
  • ½ cup chopped fresh Oregano
  • 1 tsp Garlic Salt with Parsley
  • 1 cup dried Parmesan Cheese
  • Fresh Parmesano Reggiano for garnish
  1.  Heat 2 TBSP. butter in an 11 inch non-stick frying pan over medium heat.  Sauté onion.
  2. While onion is sautéing, heat 2 TBSP. butter in a 10 inch saucepan over medium-high heat.  Add soaked steel cut oats and stir constantly for 2-3 minutes or until remaining liquid has evaporated.  Remove from heat and set aside.
  3. Once onion has become translucent; add the following to the pan:  mushrooms, zucchini, sun dried tomatoes and steel cut oats; mix well.  Remove from heat.
  4. In a large mixing bowl; beat eggs and then add garlic salt, oregano and parmesan cheese.  Mix well and then stir in steel cut oat mixture.
  5.  Return 11 inch frying pan to medium to medium-high heat and add remaining 2 TBSP. butter.  When butter has melted, immediately pour in steel cut oat mixture and place a tight fitting lid on your pan.  Cook covered for 10 minutes or until cooked through.  Remove lid and remove pan from heat; invert onto a serving plate.  Immediately top with freshly grated Parmesano Reggiano.
  6. Slice and serve.

Laurie Figone
Petaluma, CA

Italian Pinhead Torta | Bob's Red Mill


Enjoy Scotland, Laurie! It’s the best country in the world! I’m not biased at all.. 🙂

Thanks Gluten Free Traveller!!! I can’t wait!!

Michele Nolan says:

Congratulations Laurie Figone on your win.
Your Torta recipe is absolutely delicious.
Be safe and have fun in Scotland while winning the Golden Spurtle.

[…] Italian Pinhead Torta (similar to a frittata) features Bob’s Red Mill Steel Cut Oats soaked and cooked in mushroom […]

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