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Pizza Chiena Napoletana

Pizza Chiena or Pizza pie from Italy

Dough Ingredients: 300g “00” flour
140g water
80g HNC extra virgin olive oil
5g sea salt
3g sugar
1/2 tsp instant yeast
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Filling Ingredients:400g Gambetti misti from H&C roughly diced 

100g H&C parmigiano reggiano (grated)
100g H&C pecorino Semi stagionato (grated)
500g ricotta cheese (sheep ricotta is even tastier)
2 whole organic eggs
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
Feeds 8/10
Contributed by Peppe Cimmino, a London based cook from Naples who arrived here, via Liverpool, in 2014.

Pizza Chiena is Neapolitan dialect for filled pizza (or pie), in Italian. Every family has their own version and this is mine. Filled with a variety of cheeses, salumi, eggs and ricotta then baked in a bread crust it’s a great way to use up leftovers of salami or pancetta that you might have in the fridge after Christmas. It’s totally delicious and reminds me of the days when I was a kid and played football and on match day my parents used to pack me a few slices of pizza chiena for after the game. You can serve it as an antipasto or as part of an aperitivo to snack on whilst sipping negronis.

Pizza Chiena can be prepared well in advance - in fact it tastes even better the day after it has been made – and should be served at room temperature.

A thick slice of pizza pie

To make the dough put all the ingredients in a bowl and mix well till you have a lovely soft dough. Cover with a tea towel and leave to sit for at least 30 minutes.

Meanwhile in another bowl mix the ricotta the salt and pepper with the eggs stir well and then add the diced gambetti or ends of salumi. Next add the grated Pecorino and Parmesan. Stir once again to ensure all is well combined.

After the 30 minutes have passed divide the dough in two parts, one part weighing 320g the other 200g. The larger part goes at the bottom of the pie, the smaller will be the lid

Next oil the bottom of a pie dish or round cake tray about 24cm wide. Be generous with the oil as this will prevent the dough from sticking. Now wet your worktop with more oil and roll out the 320g of dough making sure you have a round shape. Line the pie dish with the dough and fill with the ricotta and salumi mix making sure you spread this over the whole surface.

A pizza pie without the top

Next roll out the 200g of remaining dough the same way as you did before on an oiled worktop making sure you have another circle.
To close the pie, overlap the sides of the bottom dough towards the top dough and seal it with your fingers as you go all around. Once you finish this step, make a few holes all around the top of the pie using a fork. This will stop the crust rising too much during baking.

A pizza pie ready to be baked

Bake for 45 minutes at 180C or until the pie is nicely brown all over and the beautiful smell fills your kitchen. Once cooked let it rest till cool. If you can resist wait till next day, it’ll be worth the wait!

At the Ham & Cheese Co, we're lucky enough to have worked with Peppe and watched the rise of his exciting pop-up at the Hill Station Café in Telegraph hill where twice a week – outside of lockdown – he cooks a dreamy menu with a strong emphasis on his southern Italian roots. It’s one of those menus where you always want everything on it.

Peppe buys many of his Italian supplies from us and every month we will be featuring one of his favourite recipes. All of them are simple and seasonal; just what we need while Covid binds us all to the kitchen sink

Try them and, when you’ve got the Peppeckish bug, check out Peppe’s website for details of his pop up and the delicious dishes he’s delivering around South London during lockdown