Wednesday, March 2, 2011
Neapolitan Rustico (salty cake)
In Neapolitan tradition this salty cake is very popular during the Easter holidays, after the Paschal Vigil of Holy Saturday they are used to meet to "break the glory, " that is to break the paschal fast time by eating all sorts of delicacy. However, you can find it all year round in Neapolitan pastry shops and rotisseries, and it can be eaten in the street with only the help of a napkin. Also it could be a very good meal substitute during lunch break.
And how can you enjoy it if you are away from Naples? It's easy! We'll make it? ... And I'll have to thank my little sister for this...
For the short pastry:
Flour 270 g (2 and 1/4 cups)
Margarine 100 g (1/3 cup and 1 tbsp)
1 egg and 1 egg yolk (or two small eggs)
Sugar 100 g (1/2 cup)
a pinch of baking powder
For the filling:
Ricotta cheese 400 g (14 oz)
Fior di latte (mozzarella cheese) 200 g (7 oz)
3 eggs + 1 egg white
Parmesan cheese 75 g (3 oz)
Cooked ham 80 g (3 oz)
Salami 80 g (3 oz)
a pinch of salt and pepper
To brush before baking:
1 egg yolk with a drop of milk
Meanwhile cut up the salami, the cooked ham and the mozzarella cheese. Put the ricotta cheese in a mixing bowl and mash it with a fork, add the eggs, the egg white, the grated Parmesan cheese, salt and pepper, thoroughly mix everything and then add the cold cuts and the mozzarella cheese, mix everything over again until it's smooth.
Take the short pastry out from the refrigerator, cut a little more than half of it and, with the aid of a rolling pin, roll it out on a baking paper then place it on a baking tray in order to cover the edges, pour the previously prepared filling and spread it out evenly (picture 1). Roll out the remaining pastry and place it on top of the pie and let fall the edge on it. Riddle the surface with holes, brush it with the egg yolk and milk mixture (picture 2) and bake in oven at 160° C (325° F) for 30 minutes, take it out of the oven when it is evenly golden!
Let it cool and serve it cold.
P.s. This salty cake can also be prepared as mince pies but you may need the special oval cake moulds, in this case follow these steps:
Grease the moulds with butter and flour, line it with the pastry, with the aid of a fork, riddle the bottom with holes, then pour the filling and cover with other pastry, riddle the surface with holes and brush with the egg yolk and milk mixture then bake at 160° C (325° F) for 30 minutes.