This traditional recipe originated in Liguria was, as the name said, ready for Easter, when families use to make an outdoor picnic celebrating the Christian festivity and the coming of spring. The original recipe is very time-consuming. Here you find a simplified version that allows to recycle cream cheese, hard cheese and cooked green leaf veggies.
Ingredients for the dough
300 gr (10, 5 ounces) all purpose flour
200 ml (7 fl oz) water
20 ml olive oil (2 Tbs)
For the filling
250 gr (9 oz) ricotta cheese
500 gr (18 oz) of cooked spinach
80 gr (3 oz) parmigiano reggiano
1-Make the dough by putting the flour on a clean surface or in a bowl. Add the salt and the oil with ¾ of the water. Mix the ingredient until you can make a soft ball that separate from the container. (Depending on your flour you may need the rest of the water or not). Divide into two balls. Set a side to rest for at least 30 min.
If you are using store brought puff pastry allow to come to room temperature
2-If you need to cook your green leaf veggie, do so, and then drain and squeeze out all the cooking liquid.
3-Shortly sauté the veggies in a pan with olive oil, garlic and a pinch of salt. Let it cool and chop them. When cool, fold in one or two eggs.
4-Put the ricotta, the parmigiano (leave aside 2 TBS) and 2 eggs, with same salt and pepper in a bowl, beat the mixture.
Preheat the oven at 180 C or 400 F.
5-Roll the dough thinly on a lightly floured surface. Big enough to largely cover the bottom and sides of your baking dish overlapping the rim by 2-3 cm.
6-Fill with the veggies until covering the bottom of the dish. Make the surface even with a wood spoon.
7- Add the ricotta mixture on top of the veggies. Gently make 2 or 4 holes in the ricotta and fill them with the eggs yolk. Depending on how many eggs you want in your pie. Cover with Parmigiano.
8-Roll the other dough ball and make a smaller circle that should cover just the inner circle of the baking pan.
9-Fold the overhanging edges of pastry over the top f the pie.
10-Beat an egg yolk with 2 TBS of water and brush over the top of the pastry.
Bake for 45-60 minute until golden.
If you don’t have the time to make the dough, buy some puff pastry. The ricotta can be substituted by cream cheese. In this case would be a good idea to beat two eggs white until soft picks forms and add it to the cheese mixture to compensate the fluffiness of ricotta. Any kind of green leaf veggie is Ok for this recipe, it is also very tasty with artichokes. If you have any leftover hard cheese, great it and add it to the ricotta mixture.
The original recipe should have 33 layers of pastry to celebrate the age of Christ and 7 eggs like the days of the Holy week.