A pizza-like delicious ‘pizza’ but very different in taste–has NO TOMATO.
Note: there are at least 4 spellings for this Sicilian pie – Sfingione, sfincione, svingione, and svincione.
Recipe is for one sfingione (a rectangular cookie sheet works best).
You will want to make more than one – can be frozen and warmed without losing flavor.
1- 1/2 lbs. pizza dough (which has risen well) flattened pizza style
1 – 1/2 cups bread crumbs (semi-hard bread crumbled in blender or processor tastes bests -so bread crumbs are not too fine)
3/4 cups grated Pecorino Romano
4-5 scallions–(chopped medium slices)
1 large onion
8 oz. muenster cheese sliced in 1/4 ” X 1/2″ (sort of rectangular)
1 can flat anchovies
1/2 cup olive oil (to be used half at a time)
1/4 cup cold water
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
In a large frying pan combine 1 /4 c. oil and all onions. Fry for about 4 minutes (until softened), add anchovies and blend the anchovies until dissolved. (If you like a strong taste of the anchovies, you can omit them from the oil and onions and place them in mini pieces on the dough directly –I personally like the former). Remove the onion and oil, anchovies, from stove. In a large bowl mix together the breadcrumbs and cheese. To that add the 1/4 cup water and mix well to moisten the breadcrumbs. To that add the onions and oil and anchovies, and the 1/4 cup oil left . Mix all well together.
On the flattened dough add the muenster cheese, ( and anchovies–optional), follow by spreading the mixture of onions etc. evenly. What works well is to place mixture as you would ricotta on lasagna–and use a fork to spread evenly on the entire pizza dough. Press the top gently, and you are ready to bake the sfingione.
Bake at 425 degrees. Check the bottom of pizza to be sure it has cooked properly…if not bake until it is at least golden brown. (as a guideline, I cooked the one above for 16 minutes).
When removing from oven top with a sprinkle of olive oil, and light sprinkle oregano. The sfingione is best when served slightly warm–or even room temperature.
RECIPE IS FROM ANTONETTA BARTOLONE–Mary Digilio’s Mom and my dearest sister–who has gone to God.
When I first saw this recipe, I was surprised to see that it used Muenster cheese. When I asked Mary about it, she said Muenster was the closest taste she could find to the traditional cheese which would be used – “Primo Sale”, which can be difficult to find. About Primo Sale:
“Primo Sale is an Italian, sheep milk cheese primarily produced in the islands of Sicily and Sardinia. The name itself literally means “first salt” and is used to describe early stages of maturation. In the Belice Valley in Sicily, before the cheese is salted and taken right out of the mould, the cheese is called “Tuma”. After its first salting, it is called “Primo Sale”. After it is aged, it is referred to as “Vastedda”. Because the cheese is young, it has a bright white colored pate and milky in flavor. It is a rindless cheese that is semi-soft in texture. This cheese is typically made plain or flavored with black or red peppercorns.” Courtesy of cheeselibrary.com