Tag Archives: cured meats

Pizzagaina

This is an Italian Easter meat and cheese pie. I’ve always wanted to try it. Since today is the Octave of Easter, I decided to make it for dinner. I didn’t really have a recipe, but why let that stop me?

Result? Pretty darn good! But it leaves you with a definite understanding of why you should only eat this once a year!

Crust

  • 250g all purpose flour
  • 125g semolina flour
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 Tbsp sugar
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp yeast
  • 1 cup warm water
  • eggwash

Filling

  • 1 lb italian sausage*
  • 1 cup sweet onion*, finely diced
  • 1/4 lb pepperoni*, diced
  • 1/4 lb genoa salami*, diced
  • 3 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1 lb ricotta**, drained
  • 1 lb shredded mozzerella
  • 1 cup parmesan
  • 1/4 tsp ground pepper

* You can use whatever combination of italian meats you want in this pie, really, to the tune of about 1.5 lbs of meat. Prosciutto, capicollo, etc***. We, however, are not super wealthy, so I went with the cheaper option of browned italian sausage and added a little sweet onion I had hanging around leftover from something else.

** Traditionally it uses Italian Basket cheese, but that’s not available here and now.

***I wouldn’t use prosciutto though. That would be a terrible waste.

Make your crust. This is a yeast crust, so it needs to rise for about an hour. The dough will be a little sticky, but as long as it’s mostly holding together, don’t add any extra flour. Knead it lightly and leave in a bowl to rise. Flip it over once or twice, you don’t want any big bubbles here.

Brown up your sausage and onion, drain it and let it cool. Dice up your other meats – I buy mine straight from the deli sliced on ten, this permits a nice small dice. Mix all the filling ingredients together.

Preheat your oven to 350 F.

Divide your dough in half. Spread out a piece of parchment, and drop a dough ball on it. The dough will be very sticky. Add about a tablespoon of flour to the top of the dough, and start rolling it out. When you’ve reached a big enough size for a deep dish 9″ pie pan, stop and leave it alone for 5 minutes. The dough will shrink back some. Roll it out again, and transfer it to the pie dish, but don’t trim it.

Start adding your filling to the pie plate. The filling will fit the bottom crust neatly into the pan. As necessary, lift up the edges of the pie crust to allow the air to be pushed out. The filling will completely fill a 9″ deep dish pie plate.

Roll out the second half of the crust in the same manner as the first. Drape it over the top of the pie. Use a fork to crimp the crust edges firmly together, then trim the edges of the dough off.

You can bake the scraps of crust as breadsticks if you like.

Brush the top crust with egg wash, and cut slits. Bake at 350 F for 45 minutes, or until the filling is oozing from the slits in the top crust.

Allow to cool 15 minutes before cutting.

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