Recipe: Torta Rustica


2 loaves frozen bread dough, thawed

20 slices provolone

8 (7-inch diameter) slices mortadella with pistachios

1 (1-pound) jar roasted sweet red peppers, drained, seeded and halved lengthwise

25 slices mozzarella

10 slices cappicola

6 (4-inch diameter) slices mortadella

Omelet Layer

1 (1-pound) jar Macedonian golden peppers, drained, seeded and halved lengthwise

1 (10-ounce) package frozen collard greens, thawed and well drained

1/4 pound thinly sliced prosciutto

1 (6-inch long) link Italian dry sausage, cut in thin diagonal slices

13 slices spicy, hard salami

Roll one loaf of thawed bread into circle large enough to fit in bottom and up sides of 10-inch springform pan. (If dough is too elastic to retain shape when rolled, let rest a few minutes, then try again.) Press rolled dough onto bottom and up sides of oiled pan.

Arrange 7 slices provolone over dough in bottom of pan, overlapping slightly. Top provolone with 4 slices 7-inch mortadella with pistachios. Flatten sweet red peppers on paper towels to remove any additional moisture and arrange half of peppers over mortadella. Add layer of 7 slices mozzarella, all cappicola and all slices 4-inch mortadella. Press layers down firmly each time new one is added.

Slide Omelet Layer over mortadella. Flatten golden peppers on paper towels and arrange over Omelet Layer. Add 6 slices mozzarella. Spread drained collard greens over mozzarella. Press each layer down firmly while continuing to add layers of 6 slices provolone, prosciutto, 6 slices mozzarella, dry sausage slices, remaining half of sweet red peppers, remaining 7 slices provolone, all spicy hard salami, remaining 4 slices 7-inch mortadella and remaining 6 slices mozzarella.

Roll remaining loaf of dough into large enough circle to fit top of torta. Pinch edges of dough together at sides, sealing well. Brush with egg white mixed with water. Bake at 350 degrees 1 hour or until bread case is golden brown and pulls away from sides of pan slightly.

Completely cool in pan on rack. Refrigerate and serve cold. Cut in wedges to serve. Makes 16 to 20 servings.

Omelet Layer

1 tablespoon butter or margarine

3 eggs, beaten

1 clove garlic, minced

1/4 teaspoon dried tarragon leaves

Salt, pepper

Melt butter in 10-inch nonstick skillet. Combine eggs, garlic and tarragon. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Pour egg mixture into skillet and cook over medium heat, lifting edges to allow uncooked portion of egg to flow underneath to cook. Cook until set. Slide onto plate and cool. Makes 1 (10-inch) omelet.

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