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Pizza Rustica – Easter Meat & Cheese Pie

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hello this is chef john from food whooshes calm with Pizza Rustica that’s right I am very happy to be sharing this traditional Easter recipe which a lot of people describe as an Italian meat filled quiche but to me it’s way closer to a savory cheesecake so if you’ve ever been enjoying a slice of that and thought to yourself I wish this wasn’t sweet and also had salami and pepperoni in it you are gonna love this but no matter how you describe it it’s definitely not like pizza although it is pretty Rustica and very very delicious so with that let’s go ahead and get started with the dough for our crust which will begin with some all-purpose flour a little bit of salt and then some very very cold butter that we’ve cut in slices and as usual the colder the better and I will also add in a couple tablespoons of olive oil which as you can see

I’m measuring very carefully and then what we’ll do is take one of these wire pastry cutters and we’ll go ahead and blend that butter into the flour until it resembles coarse crumbs and by the way if you don’t have one of these tools you can just use your fingertips to rub all this together which is how between 90 and 95 percent of Italian grandmothers would do it and then what we’ll do once our mixture resembles something that looks like this is stop and make a little well in the center with a fork into which we’ll pour one beaten egg and then we’ll fork you late that for about a minute or until we think that egg is pretty well mixed in at which point we’ll stop and add the last ingredients a splash a nice cold fresh water and I should mention most of the dough recipes for this call for just eggs but I think a combo of egg water is a little easier to work with and what we’ll do is give that a very brief mixing with the fork before switching to our hands with which we will attempt to press this into a ball of dough and if it seems dry and it’s not coming together definitely sprinkle in some more water like a teaspoon at a time until it does in fact if I’m being completely objective

I think mine was actually a little too dry and I couldn’t used one more splash but anyway it worked just barely but the point is you had enough water so it does come together nicely and once it does come together we can transfer that onto the table top to finish it off and then what we’ll do once we have manipulated that into a nice disc of dough let’s go ahead and wrap it plastic and pop in the fridge for at least an hour alright these type of dough’s are always easier to work with once they’re cold plus it gives our flour time to hydrate and if you’re not filming it in a big hurry make sure you press those random crumbs I left that in a table into your dough and then what we’ll do while our dough is resting in the fridge is go ahead and make our filling which is gonna start with 1 pound of drained ricotta cheese and all that means is we left it in a strainer

over a bowl the night before so that any of the excess water could drip out and not to brag but I was using a really good one so now much came out but with your average supermarket variety you’re gonna be surprised just how much moisture does leak out but anyway we will transfer that to a nice big mixing bowl and add a half a pound of low moisture mozzarella that we’ve cut into small cubes and by low-moisture mozzarella I mean inexpensive and then the last of our cheese additions will be a couple ounces of finely grated pecorino romano or if you want some parmesan that is up to you and since this is an Easter video I think it is appropriate to say you are after all the Jesus of your cheese’s and either would work and then to that we will add a little touch of salt as well as some freshly ground black pepper at which point we will add 7 large beaten eggs ok because 6 is not enough 1/8 would be too many and then once the eggs are in it’s time to meet our meats and what I’ll be adding is some cooked and

crumbled Italian sausage and I went with the sweet variety but of course a spicy one would also work we will also toss in some cubed up smoked ham as well as some type of cubed up salami and then last but not least some pepperoni which I basically just sliced into strips since it came already sliced but if you can fight it and stick form you can go ahead and cube that up just like the salami in the ham and that’s it we’ll go ahead and take a big spoon or spatula and give this a very very very thorough mixing until it’s extremely well combined in fact if you’re not sure keep stirring until you are and then stir it for another minute and that’s it once thats mixed we’ll go ahead pop it in the fridge until we’re ready to use it and then the only other thing we need to prep would be a 9 inch springform pan that we’ve rubbed with olive oil and dusted with flour and while it is true you can cook this another large deep taking pans or dishes this really is what you want to use so call your friend that does all that baking and safely

borrow one from them and that’s it once our dough is rested we can pull it out and unwrap it and cut off about 1/3 for the top and we’ll reserve that while we roll out the rest to fill our pan and of course as usual we will only use enough flour as needed and we’re gonna want to try to get this to about an eighth of an inch thick and hopefully about 15 inches wide and remember when I said I thought my deal was a little dry or a see how it’s really splitting around the edges that is one of the tell-tale signs so next time I’ll use a little more water but the good news is because of the way we’re gonna place this in that’s not really gonna matter but what does matter is this is not sticking to the table so I made sure that was not a problem before carefully rolling up the dough on my pin like this and we’re doing that so it’s easier to transfer into our pan and then what we need to do without

stretching the dough out is tuck it into this pan so it’s evenly distributed across the bottom and up the sides and if like me you have too much on one side and not enough on the other you can always pull that extra dough off and dampen it very slightly with some water and then push it into the areas where it’s needed okay in a perfect world you roll that out uniformly and then placed it in absolutely centered but you know what I’ve never lived in that world and you probably haven’t either so for people like us we’re gonna have to do a little bit of patching and by a little bit I mean a lot and ultimately what we want to end up with is that dough coming up just past the edge of the pan which I finally achieve like 10 minutes later but anyway once that’s accomplished we’ll go ahead and transfer in our filling and as we do this we want to make sure there’s no air pockets so make sure you’re pressing that firmly into the corners and once that’s been transferred and we will

smooth out the top and that’s it we will take our remaining dough and roll that out into a circle that’s ideally slightly wider than our pan and then just like the bottom we’ll go ahead and roll that up on our pin and transfer it over the top oh by the way in the written recipe I’m gonna suggest you double the dough recipe so that you have plenty to do this with since this amount did work but I had like absolutely zero despair which can make it a little trickier and stressful especially if you’re new to baking okay it’s a proven scientific fact that pastries can sense fear and anxiety but anyway we’ll go ahead and get that top cross properly positioned and pressed in at which point we will take an egg wash and we’ll give this a nice brushing and if you’re not sure what an egg wash is it is simply one egg beaten with a teaspoon of water and then once that surface was sufficiently moistened

I decided to take a knife and go ahead and trim off any excess which is totally optional but it will give us a little more uniform and cleaner edge and once that was done it was time to start folding our dough down from the edge with the crust from the bottom going up over the top of the top crust and thanks to our egg wash is we kind of push and press that together it should seal nicely at which point it is time to crimp which can be a little challenging in this situation because our dough is lower than the top of the pan in fact I think there was even a song way back when that was called crimping ain’t easy about this very thing so all we’re really able to do is sort of go around poking making indentations like this which is fine because once this is baked it’s gonna look great no matter what you did to that edge and that was actually going pretty well until for some reason

I switched directions and proceeded to slice my finger open on the sharp edge of the pan and at this point I became much less concerned with crimping and much more concerned about not getting blood on the crust so I stopped and gave the top one last brushing with our egg wash after which it was ready to transfer into the center of a 450 degree oven for just three seconds because as soon as that’s in we’re gonna immediately reduce our heat to 350 and let it bake for about an hour and 15 to 20 minutes or until our top is beautifully golden brown and it looks like this and then very important we need to let it sit just like this for 10 minutes before we carefully remove the ring all right so don’t rush that it needs to cool down a little bit before we proceed alright so let it rest for 10 minutes before you spring the ring and if everything’s gone according to plan that crust should be a beautiful light golden brown and fully cooked all the way through and despite the massive amount of patching I had to do it actually looked pretty good if I do say so myself which is why I transferred it onto a cake Stan even though I was too chicken take off the bottom and I took way too many pictures but that’s okay because after you Deering this thing you definitely want to let it cool for about 15 minutes or so before you slice in otherwise it still might be a little bit loose inside so like

I said I’ll let mine sit about 15 minutes before cutting out a nice big wedge which for the first piece taken out of this went surprisingly well and that my friends if you’ve never seen it before is what a proper slice a pizza Rustica should look like at least according to me and if you’re wondering what it tastes like I have some great news it tastes exactly like what it looks like just an absolute embarrassment of riches of Italian meats and cheeses with just enough egg to somehow hold this all together and of course I’ll state the obvious until you can make this with whatever combination of meeting Jesus you want or you can add different cheeses like provolone or fontina or different meats like Coppa or prosciutto or of course gabagool as would several other Italian meats I can’t pronounce and I was just about to start telling you how nice and flaky this crust was but you know what when it comes to Pizza Rustica nobody cares about the crust it is simply here to hold all this massive amount of goodness together and then it’s fairly light and flaky and tender is just an added bonus but anyway that’s it my take on Pizza Rustica which like I said earlier is nothing like a quiche so if you’re one of these people

please stop describing it like that okay it’s way closer to a savory cheesecake containing dangerous quantities of meat and whether you end up making this for your Easter Sunday celebration or for some other occasion special or otherwise I really do hope you give this a try soon so please follow the links below for the ingredient amounts a principle written recipe and much more info as usual and as always enjoy

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