Bolognese erbazzone: a succulent pie rich in greens

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Erbazzone is a delicious savory pie. I do like it because it is both easy to prepare and it always turns out right! A certain success.

Are you ready for a super toothsome recipe? Here you are!

erbazzone

Also called scarpazzone (from the dialect scarpazoun), it originated in Emilia Romagna as a simple humble dish (my granny used to make it with the vegetables she grew in her own vegetable garden) because it consisted of seasonal products which were enclosed in a flaky pie crust; a good deal of lard (as the Emilian dialect says: nothing from pork can be thrown away) and aromatic herb delivered even more taste.

My granny’s family baked it in a copper baking tin in their wooden oven in the courtyard of their farm which served all the neighborhood: it was always a challenge for the best erbazzone.

My granny’s recipe, which I do love, consists of spinach (but chard fits too), breadcrumbs, plenty of Parmigiano Reggiano cheese, and smoked bacon; everything is enclosed in a pie crust similar to flaky pastry.

You can’t imagine how easy to make this pie is!

erbazzone italian

When can you eat erbazzone?

Prepare it for a cheerful picnic, or a succulent lunch break along with some crispy green salad because erbazzone is very nutrient but it doesn’t fill your stomach completely: salad prevents you from feeling hungry after few hours.

Why don’t you cut into 5x5cm squares and serve it as a tempting appetizer along with a nice cold drink! The perfect finger food to make your aperitive richer!

Bolognese erbazzone: a succulent pie rich in greens

Two round layers of pasta enclose a filling of spinach, cheese and bacon. This is how you can prepare this traditional dish from Emilia. 
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Keyword erbazzone, veggie
Prep Time 30 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 8 people

Ingredients

For the dough

  • 350 gr flour type; if you like a more rustic texture and taste, use wholegrain flour 
  • 30 gr lard or butter
  • 100 ml milk
  • 2 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper 
  • lukewarm water

For the filling 

  • 1,5 kg spinach, chard or a mix of greens
  • 2 green onions or 1 small yellow onion
  • 100 gr ham, mortadella, or bacon
  • 3-4 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 50 gr butter
  • 2 handfuls of breadcrumbs 
  • 1 small bunch of fresh parsley
  • 5-6 handfuls (about 80g) of grated Parmigiano Reggiano 
  • salt and pepper to taste 

Instructions

  • In a big mixing bowl combine softened butter, flour, a pinch of salt, and milk; 
  • Mix well and then knead until an elastic and smooth dough forms; the quantity of liquid varies according to the absorption power of the flour, so adjust the quantities to reach the right density; add a few tbsp of water only in case the dough doesn’t come together; 
  • If the dough gets too stiff, add some more milk;
  • When smooth, make a ball and wrap it into cling film; let rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes;
  • Wash and cook the spinach in salty boiling water, then drain it and squeeze out all the liquids; 
  • Slice the green onions into thin rings;
  • In a pan, melt the lard of the ham and add the green onions; 
  • Add butter and oil, sweat the green onions, and then stir in the spinach; 
  • Season with salt and pepper and sauté for 5-6 minutes, then remove from the heat;
  • Sprinkle with chopped parsley;
  • Let it cool down completely and add grated Parmigiano Reggiano; 
  • Divide the dough into two halves; 
  • Roll out the first half of the dough and place it onto an oiled baking pan; prick the first layer with a fork and pour the spinach filling; 
  • Roll out the second half of dough: it should be thinner than the first one. Roll out the dough onto the floured rolling pin and arrange on the pie. Crimp the edges and prick the top layer with a fork; 
  • Pre-heat the oven at 200°C (390°F); bake for 30 minutes: 
  • A few minutes before the end of the cooking time, brush the surface with a piece of lard;
  • Put back into the oven, bake for a few more minutes; erbazzone is ready.  

 

italian torta di verdure

A little time-saving advice for the same result?

You may have a really toothsome result in less time with some useful advice:

  1. Use store-bought flaky-pastry for the bottom and the top of the pie;
  2. Replace fresh spinach or chard with unseasoned frozen ones (you need about 750g).

How can you store it?

Once cooled, cover erbazzone with cling film: it keeps fresh up to 2 days in the fridge. It can be also frozen either raw or cooked if you have used fresh ingredients.

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