Easter Cheese Bread
by Rita Boini
- 500 g of flour
- 5 eggs
- 200 g of mixed cheese, possibly pecorino and Romanesco, half of which is grated and half into small pieces
- 50 g of lard
- 50 g of extra virgin olive oil
- 60 g of brewer’s yeast
- 7-8 pepper granules
- Oil or lard to grease the cake tin
Place the pepper granules in a saucepan together with a little water and boil for 15 minutes, then leave to cool and strain. Mix the flour, the eggs, the lard, the oil, the cheese, the pepper-flavored water, a nice pinch of salt and the yeast, dissolved in a little warm water. Grease a tall cake tin, with the base narrower than the top, and fill it in half with the dough. Leave to rise until the cake has reached the edges of the pan (it will take about an hour – an hour and a half) then bake at about 160°. Cook for about an hour, raising to 180° towards the end of cooking. Remove from the oven and let cool before enjoying the cake, which can be kept for many days.
This is the modern version of the Easter Cheese Cake because it is baked in the oven, but it respects the traditional ingredients and shape. I owe it to Mrs. Carla Onorini di Magione, who incidentally, instead of mixing the pepper granules in the dough as the original recipe, flavored the cake with boiled pepper water. The pie – pizza in southern Umbria, crescia in Gubbio – with cheese, today is found all the year round in bakeries, but once it appeared on Umbrian canteens only during the Easter period and also on January 6th, Easter Day Epiphany which, according to popular tradition, is the first Easter of the year.
Courtesy of Calzetti & Mariucci.