Pizza ripiena is a rich, filling, seasonal treat.By Nancy Harmon Jenkins
You may know some Italian-Americans who adore the Easter treat often called "pizza gaina." If you've ever wondered what this spring delicacy is, the name is Italo-American for pizza chiena which is Campanian for pizza ripiena, aka pizza rustica, a legendary treat, a thick pie. You could call it Italian quiche and not be far wrong -- rich with salumi, eggs and cheeses, pizza ripiena by any name is served up at Easter from Naples to Bari and points south.
It's a staple for Pasquetta, or Easter Monday, a national holiday in this sensible country, when families debark for the countryside bearing picnics of leftovers from Easter lunch. Pizza ripiena can be both a centerpiece for an elaborate picnic and a handy tool for filling up children's empty stomachs before the main course comes out.
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