Italian Easter Pie

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(6)

If you're looking for a classic Italian Easter Pie recipe (also called Pizza Rustica), the search is over. This baby is packed with more than two pounds of meat, including sweet Italian sausage, salami, hot capicola, smoked ham, and prosciutto.

Hands On Time:
30 mins
Total Time:
1 hrs 30 mins
Yield:
Serves 8 (serving size: 1 slice)

Ingredients

  • For the crust:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour

  • 2 teaspoons granulated sugar

  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt

  • 12 tablespoons (1½ sticks) cold unsalted butter, cubed

  • 1 large egg

  • 7 tablespoons ice water

  • Nonstick cooking spray

  • For the filling:

  • 8 ounces sweet Italian sausage, casings removed

  • 1 (15-oz.) container whole-milk ricotta cheese

  • 8 ounces low-moisture mozzarella cheese, cubed

  • teaspoon freshly-ground black pepper

  • 4 large eggs

  • 8 ounces salami, cubed

  • 8 ounces hot capicola, cubed

  • 8 ounces smoked ham, cubed

  • 2 ounces thinly sliced proscuitto

  • 1 cup tightly packed whole roasted red bell peppers (about 7 oz.), drained and patted dry with paper towels

  • 2 (10-oz.) pkg. frozen chopped spinach, thawed and squeezed dry and pressed between paper towels to remove all moisture

  • 2 ½ ounces Parmesan cheese, finely shredded (about 1 cup)

Directions

  1. Prepare the crust: Combine flour, sugar, and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse until combined, 3 to 4 times. Add butter and egg; pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal, 8 to 10 times. Sprinkle ice water over dough; pulse until dough begins to form a ball. Turn dough out onto a lightly floured surface; divide in half, and shape into 2 (4-inch) disks. Wrap each in plastic wrap, and refrigerate 30 minutes or overnight.

  2. Preheat oven to 350°F with rack in middle position. Unwrap 1 disk of dough on a lightly floured surface. Roll to a 16-inch circle, and carefully fit into a 9-inch springform pan coated with cooking spray, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Refrigerate until ready to use.

  3. Prepare the filling: Cook Italian sausage in a large nonstick skillet over medium-high, breaking up sausage with a spoon until crumbled and cooked through, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer sausage to a plate and let cool completely, about 15 minutes. Whisk ricotta, mozzarella, pepper, and 3 of the eggs in a large bowl. Stir in salami, capicola, and ham.

  4. Shingle prosciutto slices in bottom of prepared dough-lined pan. Spread ricotta mixture over prosciutto. Scatter browned sausage over ricotta mixture, pressing lightly into an even layer. Shingle red bell peppers over sausage; top with spinach and Parmesan.

  5. Roll remaining dough into a 12-inch circle on a lightly floured surface. Carefully place over filling. Trim overhang so that it’s even with bottom crust; pinch top and bottom crusts firmly together. Fold dough under and crimp edges.

  6. Lightly beat remaining egg and brush liberally over top of pie. Using a paring knife, cut 4 (1-inch) vents in top of dough in a circular pattern. Place pie on a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until crust is golden brown, about 1 hour. Cover with aluminum foil and bake until a thermometer inserted in center of pie registers 150°F, about 30 more minutes. Transfer pie to a wire rack, and let cool at least 3 hours before serving. Carefully remove sides of pan, and cut pie into slices to serve. Or cool completely, and refrigerate for up to 2 days.

    Italian Easter Pie
    Antonis Achilleos
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