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Rustic Sicilian Pie


Serves 6

Impanata is a rustic Sicilian pie, filled with spinach, cheese, pine nuts, and raisins. You will need only one quarter of the basic dough for Carmelo's Sicilian Bread for this two-crust pie; use the remaining dough to make a slightly smaller loaf of bread. Since it can be made ahead and transported with ease, impanata is perfect picnic fare.



1/3 cup Filippo Berio olive oil

1 large white onion, thinly sliced

Two 10-ounce packages frozen spinach, cooked, drained, and squeezed dry

1/2 cup toasted pine nuts

1 cup grated provolone cheese (4 ounces)

1/2 cup raisins


1/4 recipe Carmelo's Sicilian Bread dough, prepared through step 4 (let rise on a cookie sheet)

1 egg, beaten

Sesame seeds for sprinkling

Coarse sea salt for sprinkling


In a skillet, heat the olive oil over low heat. Add the onions and cook until they are deep brown and lightly caramelized. Add the spinach and pine nuts, and cook for 2 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, and let cool, than add the cheese and raisins. Mix well and set aside.

Preheat the oven to 375ºF. Divide the dough in half. On a floured surface, roll one piece into a 12-inch circle. Fit it into a 9-inch pie pan. Spoon the filling into the pan.

Roll out the remaining dough to a 14-inch circle, and cover the filling with the dough. Trim the excess dough and pinch the edges to seal. Make a decorative border with your fingers. Brush the top of the pie with the beaten egg, and sprinkle on the sesame seeds and coarse salt.

Bake the pie for 25 to 30 minutes, or until the top is nicely browned. Let cool slightly before cutting into wedges. Serve warm or at room temperature.

This recipe is from CELEBRATIONS ITALIAN STYLE by Mary Ann Esposito, published by William Morrow and Company, Inc., in 1995.


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