Goutsone (Pizza Rustica - Italian Easter Meat Pie)

First of all, if you are a health-conscious person, you probably should not read any further. Continue at your own risk... there are enough calories here to feed an army for a week, not to mention the fat content.

Second, after hearing this dish pronounced "Goutsone" for 58 years in Chicago by my family, my mom, now in her 90's, swears it is spelled Calzone. I would argue that this is not a Calzone since we use pastry crust, not pizza dough, and the preparation is entirely different.

Third, no one really knows what this dish is called. It goes by many names and has lots of regional variants. Here are just a few of the names it is know by according to this source: Nevertheless, this dish is legendary for those who like heavy, Italian cooking. It is traditionally served Easter morning. It should be cooked the day before so it has time to marinate.

Allrecipes.com has a pretty decent version of this called Easter Meat Pie.

Ingredients: This dish starts with a traditional lard-based pie crust. Below we describe the filling: Instructions:

Pre-cook the sausage with fennel (lightly brown). Strain the ricotta overnight in the refrigerator. Beat 10 eggs in a large mixing bowl. Add the sausage, Romano cheese and ricotta and mix together. Put in a pie tin with top and bottom crust. Brush the top of the crust with a mixture of 1 beaten egg and sugar. Cook at 350 degrees until the crust starts browning (about 60 mins.).

There you have it - very simple. The filling varies from region to region. Some put ham, prosciutto, or other meats into it. Generally the more the merrier. The above recipe is our family version. The Allrecipes.com recipe is also a solid choice.

There are lots of variants of the filling. Here is a fairly authentic recipe that includes more Italian meats.

There you have it - one belly-busting wallop of cholesterol and fat which will spoil you forever. This is one of my top two favorite Italian foods (sfogliatella being the other one). Enjoy!