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Nana's Easter Pie

A web-exclusive recipe from Italian Cooking and Living

Altering the proportions of the meats and cheeses is part of the fun of this pie. Year to year, it's never exactly the same.

For the crust:

  • 4 cups flour, plus extra
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/3 cup bacon drippings (or extra-virgin olive oil) mixed with 1 cup warm water
  • salt
  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

For the filling:

  • 11/4 pounds mixed Italian cold cuts (prosciutto, capocollo, mortadella, pepperoni, soppressata), roughly chopped
  • 2 pounds ricotta
  • 1 pound fresh farmer's cheese, cut into chunks (if unavailable, substitute ricotta or cream cheese)
  • 11/4 pounds mixed Italian cheeses (mozzarella, provolone), roughly chopped
  • 9 eggs
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 325°. Make the dough: Mound 4 cups of flour on a work surface, and make a well in the center. Add the eggs, bacon-dripping mixture, a pinch of salt and baking powder to the well, and use a fork to work the flour into the wet ingredients until a dough forms. Knead into a ball, and add more flour if necessary. The dough should be firm and smooth. Set aside to rest.

In a large bowl, combine the meats with the cheeses, and mix. Add 8 of the eggs, and stir gently. Season with salt and pepper. Divide the dough into 4 equal parts, and roll out each piece into 1/4-inch-thick circles. Line two 8-inch glass pie plates with the rolled-out dough, and divide the filling evenly between the two pies. Top each one with the remaining pieces of dough, and press the edges to seal. Beat the remaining egg, and brush both pies with it. Make 3 slits in the top of each pie, and bake for 50 minutes or until the pie is set and the crust is browned. Serve cold or at room temperature. Makes two 8-inch pies

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