Submitted by Jaci Nuth
“Shadone is an Italian meat pie that is traditionally eaten at Easter time, or the end of Lent and fasting, thus it has also become known as Easter Pie. I’m not sure how the name Pizza Rustica came about, maybe because the flavor resembles a rustic pizza. Our family just called it Shadone. We started eating it when my father, Joe Benedetto made it and passed down his recipe through the generations. This brings back so many memories of my dad. He so enjoyed this pie, and I so enjoyed him. He was my hero! I have made Shadone many times, as have many of my children now that they are grown. We consider it a real treat every Easter! We never make just one pie, usually anywhere from 6-15 at a time! The ingredients can be a little pricey, so feel free to substitute the meats for others as noted. This recipe looks hard, but is pretty simple to make. It is great to eat with antipasto and a heavy red Italian wine! Mangia!”
Sift dry ingredients together. Blend shortening into sifted flour using a fork. Mix egg with cold water and add to dry ingredients. Mix until a ball is formed. Refrigerate.
Combine ricotta, salt, and grated Romano or Parmesan cheese. Add the raw eggs, one at a time, beating after each with a wooden spoon. Add cooked sausage meat, prosciutto, ham, pepperoni, capicola, mozzarella, and hard boiled eggs. Blend and mix well. Prepare pastry. Roll out 1/2 of the dough and line a 10 inch round, deep pie pan with the pastry. Prick the dough with a fork. Sprinkle the bottom with a little flour. Pour the filling mixture into the pan. Roll out the other 1/2 of the dough and cover the top of the pie. Trim edges of crust, leaving about 1/2 inch overhang. Fold the dough edges under and back to flute thickly. Cut slits in to to allow steam to escape. Sprinkle top of crust with water before putting in oven. (You can also take some of the extra dough and form it into a cross and put it on top of the pie.) Bake in preheated 400 degree oven for the first 15 minutes. Lower the temperature to 325 degrees and bake for 45 minutes longer. For a more golden brown crust, brush beaten egg over top crust a few minutes before pie is ready to come out of the oven. Repeat a second time. Remove from oven and let stand for at least 5 minutes. Can be served warm or cold. Best at room temperature.