Recipe: Fragoni, a light version of pizza rustica

Fragoni
Sofia Butera, Il Sorriso Cafe & Pizzeria
April 23, 2019
By Sofia Butera, Il Sorriso Cafe & Pizzeria
Sofia Butera, owner of Il Sorriso Cafe & Pizzeria in Niagara Falls, Ont., since 2010, has a pizza on her menu called Fragoni (also pronounced Fraguni). It’s a light version of the pizza rustica loved by many of Italian heritage and traditionally enjoyed – hot or cold – by so many at Easter and on other family occasions.

Pizza rustica is made in many regions of Italy using specialty ingredients.

Butera’s recipe comes from her parents, Aldo and Rosa Butera, from Lamezia in Italy’s Calabria region. It is different from a deeper-dish version made in other areas of Italy that is topped by a crust, like a pie.  

Although the Fragoni is not officially on the menu, it is sold as a take ’n’ bake dish. Many customers eat it on Good Friday, with the eggs providing protein in place of meat, or with soppressata (dry salami) at other times of year.

“My parents’ generation are happy we’re carrying on their traditions,” she says.

INGREDIENTS

DOUGH
  • 500 g flour
  • 1 cup warm water
  • 1 teaspoon instant yeast
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 1 teaspoon salt
FILLING
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 250 ml container ricotta
  • Chopped parsley
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Add anything else you like to the filling: hot salami, anchovies, sundried tomatoes, etc.
  • For a sweet version, add sugar or raisins
METHOD
  1. Dough: In a food processor or by hand mix liquids into dry ingredients. Add a little bit of water if dough is too dry. Knead it in to a nice soft ball. Wrap it in plastic. Let it rise in a warm place for at least one hour. Then knead and open it with a rolling pin to desired size and filling.
  2. Place filling in the middle of the opened dough and pinch the edges to form a little enclosure. Some people make mini closed-up versions like calzones (baked, not fried).
  3. Cook at 350 F until the egg and crust is golden (about 15 to 20 minutes).   
YIELD
Two eight-inch pizzas


Sofia Butera is the owner of Il Sorriso Pizzeria & Cafe, a 44-seat restaurant located near the tourist mecca of Niagara Falls, Ont. Butera opened Il Sorriso (the smile) in 2010 five minutes’ walk from the Falls.

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