Recipe of the Week
September 16, 2010
I once saw this dish served by an actor/chef in a movie and have been trying to make it ever since. After trying different variations for two years, it finally came together. This beautifully layered delight is a self contained spaghetti dinner with a unique presentation.
*I use the "Bread Machine Pizza Dough" recipe listed in the Bread Recipes category.
*3 cups shredded whole milk mozzarella cheese
*¾ lb cottage cheese
Meat Sauce Layer:
*3 cups of your favorite sauce or use the "Italian Meat Sauce" recipe listed in the Pasta Recipes category.
*8 ounces cooked spaghetti or my favorite, spaghetti rigati
*½ cup finely grated parmesan cheese
*2 eggs beaten (room temperature)
*2 Tablespoons melted butter
*1 egg beaten (room temperature)
*1 Tablespoon water
Refer to the "Bread Machine Pizza Dough" recipe to prepare the dough. Add ¼ teaspoon of garlic powder to the listed ingredients to give the dough a garlic bread taste.
Heat the "Italian Meat Sauce" over medium-low heat until it is hot but not boiling.
Prepare the pasta as described on the package. Drain the pasta and place it in a separate bowl to cool. Make sure the pasta has cooled enough so that the eggs do not scramble when they are added. When cool, add the rest of the ingredients for the spaghetti layer and mix well to thoroughly incorporate. Set the mixture aside until ready to use.
When the dough has ready to be used, cut it into two separate pieces. One piece will be larger and will use two thirds of the dough. This piece will be used as the base and sides of the pie. The remaining third of the dough will be used later as the top of the pie.
Generously flour your working surface and roll out the larger piece with a rolling pin until it is very thin.
Shake or brush off the excess flour and place the rolled dough into a 9" spring form pan. Carefully pull the dough over the sides so that the bottom and sides of the pan are totally covered.
Begin building the pie by placing half of the mozzarella cheese as the first layer. Top this with half of the "Italian Meat Sauce". Spread half the spaghetti mixture evenly over the meat sauce, making sure there is a solid pasta layer. Cover the pasta with half of the cottage cheese.
Repeat the layers a second time with the remainder of the ingredients.
Prepare the egg wash mixture and paint the dough that covers the inside of the spring form pan.
Roll out the remaining one third of the dough on the floured surface until it is very thin. Gently place the dough into the spring form pan to form the top of the pie. Carefully pull the dough over the sides so that it forms an additional layer over the bottom crust.
Cut away the excess dough at the top lip on the outside of the spring form pan.
Gently squeeze and roll the two layers of dough to form a crust around the inside of the pan.
Make several slits in the top layer of the dough to allow steam to escape while the pie is being baked.
Paint the crust and the top of the pie with the egg wash mixture.
Place the pan on top of a pizza stone in a pre-heated 450 degree oven. Bake for 30 minutes and carefully remove the pan from the oven.
If the crust is beginning to brown too much, cover the edges with tin foil.
Return the pan to the oven and continue baking for 20-25 minutes. When the dough is beautifully browned, remove the pan from the oven and place it on a baking rack to cool.
Leave the pie in the spring form pan while it is cooling for 30 minutes before serving.
When ready to serve, remove the sides of the pan and cut the pie into slices.
Present the slice of pie with a side salad for a complete spaghetti dinner.