Saturday, July 13 2024

Easter is approaching, and among the many delicacies that are prepared in our homes, there is one that I love very much, even though it is not exactly a light dish.

But maybe that’s exactly why I like it so much, and I know you do too.


I’m talking about Pizza Chiena (or Pizza Gaina), of course.

There are many variations: some use eggs in the dough, others use salami, sausage or bacon in the filling, and still others add grated pecorino cheese.






Ingredients for the Dough:

  • 1 cup (240 ml) lukewarm water
  • 2 1/4 teaspoons (7 grams) active dry yeast
  • 2 1/2 cups (350 grams) all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons (10 grams) salt
  • 1/3 cup (80 grams) lard (or 80 grams of butter or 100 grams of Extra Virgin Olive Oil)
  • Pepper to taste

Ingredients for the Filling:

  • 1 1/2 cups (300 grams) unsalted fresh cow’s cheese
  • 1 cup (250 grams) dried pork shoulder (or prosciutto)
  • 1 1/2 cups (150 grams) Grana Padano cheese
  • 5 large eggs (or 6/7 small eggs)



Prepare the dough:

Dissolve yeast in warm water and let it stand for 5-10 minutes until it becomes foamy.
In a bowl, combine flour, lard (or butter/olive oil), salt and pepper. Add the yeast mixture.
Knead until a smooth dough forms. Cover with a damp cloth and let stand for 15 minutes.
Prepare the filling:

Dice the cow cheese and dried pork shoulder.
In a bowl, beat the eggs and add the diced shoulder, cream cheese and Grana Padano. Mix well and set aside.
Fold the dough over:

After 15 minutes, fold the dough from the outside to the center. Divide it into two parts, form into balls and fold them from the outside toward the center. Let them rise in a covered container for 2 hours at room temperature.
Assemble and bake:

Grease a baking pan. Roll out one of the dough balls to form a disk slightly larger than the baking pan.
Place it in the buttered baking dish, making sure the dough goes over the edges, and pour the prepared filling evenly over it.
Roll out the other ball of dough to form a disk of the same diameter. Place it on top of the filling, then fold the edges of the bottom dough over the top to form a border.
Let rest for 30 minutes, then brush with melted lard and bake in a preheated oven at 180°C (350°F) for 45-50 minutes.
Your Majesty, the Pizza Chiena is ready.



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