Pizza Rustica is southern Italian pizza served for Easter. It is also known as Italian Easter Pie but we enjoy making it for Sunday lunch or any other occasion, too. Loaded with Ricotta, mortadella, ham, and salami, it is one of staples at our home!
This post was published eight years ago and it really needed an update ( photos especially ) so I decided to re post it since Easter is getting closer!
We make our version of Pizza Rustica using pizza dough crust, store bought. You can also make it with pastry crust. It is not difficult to master both versions. Filling contains Ricotta mixed with fresh eggs combined with finest ham, salami and cheeses. You may say Tortano Bread from Scratch is similar but it has no Ricotta and eggs are boiled and quartered to roll a salami before baking. Both of them are tasty, rustic food to enjoy not only for Easter but every time you plan to spend a day out and cut the slices to enjoy with your favourite drink.
Why is it called pizza rustica?
In and around Naples, the dish is known as pizza rustica, pizza ripiena, or pizza chiena. The different spellings and names come from the different dialects in Italian but they all mean the same thing: “stuffed pizza“.
How to make pizza rustica?
You start with Ricotta and eggs. Mix them well and add small cuts of mortadella, ham, salami, Gouda cheese (or any other semi hard type you like or have at hand), oregano, salt, and ground black pepper to taste. While your filling is aside, you roll out your 18 x 12 inches store bought pastry, and cut the top part by pressing your dish on the dough, so you have proper measure for the top.
You butter your 6-inch pan and gently press the remaining dough to cover the bottom and the sides.
I suggest you leave it that way and cut extras after you pour your filling inside. That way you leave some dough on the side to drop on the Ricotta mixture and cover with the top already prepared.
Before you leave the oven to do the rest, brush the top with beaten egg yolk to get golden crust. And, of course, don’t forget to make an incision in the middle so the steam can get out.
Once cooked, it is golden and baked through:
If you love having some tasty raw dough in the fridge to prepare pizza, dinner rolls, pretzels, focaccia, scones and much more, go to Kitchen Nostalgia to find details to make a batch of 4 lb (1.8 kg) dough which is quite a lot, enough to make 4 pizzas (10 inches / 25 cm diameter). If you don’t need that much, just use half the batch.
If you need more ideas for your Easter brunch or lunch, here are some of our suggestions:
Pizza Rustica is southern Italian pizza served for Easter. It is also known as Italian Easter Pie but we enjoy making it for Sunday lunch or any other occasion, too. Loaded with Ricotta, mortadella, ham,and salami, it is one of staples at our home!
- 1 Store bought pizza dough ( 18 x 12 inches )
- 4 eggs
- 6 Tbsp Ricotta cheese
- ½ tsp dry oregano
- Salt and ground black pepper to taste
- 1 cup Mortadella sliced
- ½ cup Gouda cheese, cubed
- ½ cup ham, cubed
- 4 Tbsp finely chopped salami
- Butter for the pan
- 1 egg yolk to brush the top
In medium sized bowl, mix eggs and Ricotta well. Add salt, ground black pepper, oregano, mortadella, cheese, ham and salami. Combine and leave aside.
Preheat the oven to 180 C / 356 F.
Roll out the dough and cut out one circle by pressing the dish on the dough and round it with sharp knife. This is your cover for 6-inch pizza rustica. Leave it aside.
Place the rest of the dough over your buttered dish and tuck in the edges.
Pour the filling in, cut the dough leftovers on the sides, leaving ½ inch free so it falls on the filling. Cover it with the prepared top.
Brush the top with egg yolk and bake for 1hour.
Pizza rustica can be served warm or cold.
After 30 minutes of baking, you may cover your pizza cake with foil not to become too brown.