(Sausage, Olive and Spinach Loaf)
1 1Lb Pkg of Fresh Pizza Dough
1 Lb Mild Italian Sausage – casing removed
1 9 oz package of Spinach – fresh and well
1 Large Onion – chopped
2 Cups Fresh Mozzarella – shredded
1/3 Cup Grated Italian Cheese – Romano or
Salt, Pepper and garlic Powder – to taste
2 Cups Pitted Kalamata Olives – sliced or
Sicilian Oil Cured Olives – pitted and
1 Egg – beaten lightly with a few drops of water
Poppy Seeds – optional
Let pizza dough rest on a lightly floured pastry board, covered, for about 30 minutes until ready to use. Preheat oven to 350°. Cook the sausage until browned but not too dry in a few tablespoons of olive oil. Crumble with wooden spoon as it cooks and then remove to a paper towel-lined plate to drain. In the same pan, add a little more olive oil and cook the onions until soft, season with salt, pepper and garlic powered. Stir and add the spinach. Cook until the spinach is wilted and then stir all together. Add the grated cheese, olives and the shredded mozzarella and mix well. TO ASSEMBLE: Roll out the dough on a slightly floured surface into a 14” X 12” rectangle. Spread the cooked mixture down the center of the dough, keeping a border at all sides and ends. Roll up like a jelly roll starting with the long end. Pinch the end seams to seal and tuck under. Place seam side down on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Brush with the beaten egg, sprinkle poppy seeds, if using, and bake for 20 to 30 minutes until the top is golden brown. Let cool slightly before slicing.
Note: This is a recipe adapted from my mother-in law. A little has been lost in the translation and freshly made dough would have been used instead of store brought. Also, instead of one long loaf my mother-in-law would make several small ones – 5 or 6 inches long. When she made these at Christmas time, she would make am dozens, in a small kitchen without modern appliances.