(Swiss Chard Timbale)


3 1/2 Lb. Swiss chard
1/4 Lb. Genoa Salami
1/2 Lb. Mortadella
1/2 Lb. Ricotta - Part skin
1/2 Cup Parsley - chopped
2   Eggs or 2 oz. of egg substitutes
1/2 Cup Bread Crumbs
1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 Tsp. Margarine or butter
2/3 Cup Pine nuts - chopped or ground into small pieces
2 Cups Unbleached Flour


Steam the swill chard for 5 minutes. Remove the leaves from the pot and lay flat on paper towels. If a steamer is not available, gently boil the leaves in a pot large enough to lay the leaves flat while cooking.  Gently boil the leaves for 3-4 minutes.


Cut the cooked chard into 1/2 inch strips, each about 3 inches long. Chop the salami into 1/4 inch cubes. Chop the mortadella in the same way. (Turkey versions of the salami and mortadella may be used if a lower fat version of this dish is desired.) Put these ingredients into a large mixing bowl, and add the ricotta, the eggs or egg substitutes, the bread crumbs, the olive oil, and the pine nuts. Mix well. If the mixture seems loose, wait 5-10 minutes. If it does not firm a bit add another 1/3 cup of bread crumbs. If the mixture seems too firm, add 1/4 cup of milk. Season with salt and pepper. If desired hot pepper flakes (to taste) may be added at this point.


Combine the flour and salt in a large bowl.  Mix, then add 4 tablespoons of olive oil.  Mix until all of the oil is incorporated.  Add 6-7 tablespoons of cold water and mix again.  The mixing may be done by hand or in a mixer at slow speed.  when the dough is firm roll it into a ball, then wrap it in plastic wrap and place it in the refrigerator for at least an hour.  when needed, unwrap, cut into two pieces and roll into rounds large enough to fit into your baking dish or springform pan.   Remember that the piece for the bottom of the pan must be large enough to cover the bottom and sides of the pan.   The top piece needs to cover the entire tort surface.


Butter the sides and bottom of a 12 inch diameter, 4 inch high casserole. Fit the bottom layer of crust into the casserole, being careful not to tear the dough. Add the filling. Prior to placing the top crust on the timbale, sprinkle with olive oil, then add the top crust. Pinch the top crust to the bottom crust in order to seal the timbale. Cut off any remaining dough which hangs from the casserole. If desired, a beaten egg white, can be brushed onto the bottom crust prior to adding the top crust in order to secure a better seal. A fork works as well. Simply crimp the top to the bottom, all around the diameter, using the tines. Cut 3-4 small openings in the top crust with a scissors prior to baking the timbale. This allows steam to escape during the baking.

Bake for 1 hour in a 350 degree oven. If using a glass casserole, bake at 325 degrees. When done, allow to cool for at least an hour. Invert over a large platter, and remove the timbale. Serve warm.  Leftovers are excellent served at room temperature as an antipasto.

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Last updated on: 06/03/99 12:50:48 AM