Parishioners of Our Lady of Pompei/St. Peter Church of Syracuse have a hot item on their hands. It’s a new cookbook, “Uniting at the Family Table,” and it’s already in its second printing. The book features recipes from families throughout the Northside parish, and moneys raised from sales go to support the students of the Parish School. The pastor, Father Daniel Caruso, says Cathedral Academy at Pompei serves a diverse population from throughout the city, including many students who benefit from tuition assistance.
The cookbook is available at $25 each, and you can get a copy by calling the Parish Office at 315-422-7163. It features hundreds of recipes from several generations of families… including several from the pastor himself. He prepared a favorite holiday recipe for us.
EASTER PIE by Father Dan Caruso, from “Uniting at the Family Table.”
1 pkg (2 ½ tsp) Active Dry Yeast
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
3-4 cups Unbleached All-Purpose Flour
1 tsp Salt
½ tsp Freshly Ground Pepper
1 ½ cups warm water
2 tbsp Olive Oil, plus more for brushing
2 large Onions
8 oz Sweet Italian Sausage meat
32 oz Ricotta
¼ cup Freshly Grated Pecorino Romano
¼ cup Chopped Flat-Leaf Parsley
8 oz Mozzarella, Sliced or Chopped
4 oz Sliced Swiss Cheese, narrow strips
8 oz Cooked Ham, cut into narrow strips
4 oz Sliced Genoa Salami, narrow strips
3 oz Sliced Pepperoni, narrow strips
To make the dough, sprinkle the yeast over 1 ½ cups warm water in a large bowl. Let stand until the yeast is creamy. Stir to dissolve. Stir in the oil. Add 3 ½ cups of the flour and the salt and pepper. Stir until a dough forms. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead, adding more flour as needed, until smooth and no longer sticky. Shape the dough into a ball. Place it in a large, oiled bowl, turning once to coat. Cover with plastic wrap and let rise in a warm place for 1 to 1 ½ hours, until double in size.
Preheat the oven to 375F.
To make the filling, combine the olive oil and the onions in a large skillet and cook over medium heat, stirring, until the onions are tender and golden, about 10 minutes. Remove the onions from the pan. Add the sausage meat to the pan and cook until it is no longer pink. Transfer the meat to a colander to drain.
In a large bowl, beat the eggs until well blended. Add the ricotta, grated cheese and the parsley and stir well. Stir in the mozzarella and Swiss cheese, the onions, sausage and sliced meats.
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and press it down to eliminate air bubbles. Cut the cough into two pieces, one about three times as large as the other. Roll out the larger piece of dough to a 16-inch circle. Transfer the dough to a 9-inch springform pan, pressing it smoothly against the bottom and up the sides. Scrape the filing into the pan. Roll out the remaining piece of dough to a 9-inch circle. Place it over the filling. Pinch the edges of the top and bottom layers of dough together to seal. With a small knife, make several small slits in the top of the dough to allow steam to escape. Brush the dough with olive oil.
Bake the pie in the center of the oven for 60-75 minutes, or until toothpick or cake tester inserted in the center comes out clean. Cook the pie on a wire rack for 10 minutes. Remove the sides of the pan and cool completely.