Torta Rustica

Torta Rustica
6 servings

Torta is Italian for tart, pie or cake, but if you want just call this cool recipe a pizza pie! It’s a sure crowd pleaser. Don’t be afraid to play with the filling. Change up the cheese, the herbs and greens. Just remember if you are using a bitter green such as dandelion greens or rapini, blanch in water before using to take out some of the bitterness.




1 ⅓
cup flour, sifted (325 ml)
tsp salt (3 ml)
Tbsp olive oil (45 ml)
to ¾ cup water (125 to175 ml)


Tbsp olive oil (15 ml)
Italian sausages, meat removed from casing and crumbled
large bunches spinach, thoroughly washed, dried, stems removed
Pinch of dried Greek oregano
Tbsp freshly grated pecorino cheese (30 ml)
cup grated asiago cheese (60 ml)
cup pressed ricotta cheese (250 ml)
eggs, lightly beaten


Olive oil, for brushing on top of dough
Coarse salt, for sprinkling on top of dough, optional


Step 1

In a medium bowl, combine the flour and salt. Pour in the oil and stir with a fork until mixture crumbles evenly. While stirring with a fork, add water, a little at a time, just until mixture start to come together.

Step 2

Turn onto lightly floured surface. Knead until smooth and elastic, about 5 minutes. Transfer dough to a lightly oiled bowl and cover with plastic wrap. Let rest in the refrigerator, about 1 hour.

Step 3

While dough rests, make the filling. Add olive oil to a large sauté pan or skillet over medium high heat. Add the crumbled sausage meat and stir. Sauté until meat is just cooked through and browned, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a large bowl and let cool to room temperature.

Step 4

In the same pan, add the spinach and let wilt, about 1 to 2 minutes. (Alternatively, blanch the spinach in boiling salted water for a few seconds and plunge in cold water.) Drain spinach and squeeze out excess liquid. Transfer to same bowl as the sausage. Add the ricotta, pecorino, asiago and beaten eggs. Stir the mixture until well combined.

Step 5

Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a pizza pan or large baking sheet with parchment paper. Roll 2/3 of the dough into a circle, about 14-inch diameter and 1/16-inch thick. Transfer to a large round pizza pan or large baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush with olive oil. Spread filling over dough evenly. Roll remaining dough out to 14-inches (not quite as thin as strudel) and place over top. Evenly dock top of dough with fork so steam from the filling can escape. Crimp edge of dough to seal, twisting dough with your fingers.

Step 6

Brush top with olive oil. Sprinkle with coarse salt. Bake until golden and crisp, about 30 to 40 minutes.

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