Pizza di scarola – Escarole savoury pie
The escarole savoury pie is is a perfect treat for for a traditional picnic on a day trip out of town. Here's the typical Italian recipe.
Time: 40 minute preparation, 40 minute baking
Yields 6 servings
For the shell
500 g flour
20 g brewer’s yeast (solid or powdered)
2 tbsp. rendered lard
For the filling
1,5 Kg escarole endive
60 g salted anchovies
100 g purple Gaeta olives
1 tbsp. salted capers
50 g sultanas
30 g pine nuts
3-4 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
Escarole pie is a typical dish of Neapolitan cuisine, traditionally enjoyed on Christmas Eve also in a version that includes the filling closed between two sheets of savoury crust.
Timing: 40 minutes + il proofing
Dilute the yeast in 250 ml of lukewarm water. Sift the flour and mix it with the lard, yeast and a teaspoon of salt. Divide the dough into two non equal parts, form two balls and arrange them in two floured bowls. Cover with a damp cloth folded in four and let rise until doubled in volume.
Soak the sultanas in lukewarm water. Trim the escarole by removing the outer leaves and any damaged ones, wash it several times and blanch it for a few minutes in boiling salted water. Drain it, let it cool and wring out the moisture with your hands. Rinse the capers to remove excess salt. Wash and bone the anchovies. Heat the oil in a pan and, over medium heat, brown the sliced garlic cloves together with a piece of chilli.
Add the anchovies and break them with the tines of a fork. Add the coarsely chopped escarole, capers, pitted and chopped olives, drained and pat dried sultanas and pine nuts. Season to taste and cook the vegetables over a high heat for about ten minutes, stirring often. Grease a shallow 26 cm cake pan.
Roll out the largest of the two pieces of dough with your hands, forming a disc one centimeter thin. Line the pan with this disc, pour in the vegetable mixture, distributing it evenly. Cover with the remaining rolled out piece of dough. Crimp around the edge to seal the pie. Brush the surface with a drop of olive oil, prick with a toothpick and bake at 200°C for about 45 minutes.
Serve warm or at room temperature.