This savory filling is the perfect match for the Enriched Butter Crust recipe. I made this pie for family meal while helping my friend Jason Stratton open the aperitif bar Artusi in Seattle. The staff consumed copious amounts of pasta, eating the remnants of precise shapes and the dried strings of tajarin left over from the night before. In an effort to keep it interesting, I came up with spaghetti-and-meatball pie. Once the words spaghetti pie got stuck in my head, I became obsessed. What resulted is exactly what it sounds like. We used leftovers, much like I imagine you might, but I wouldn’t hold myself back from boiling pasta and rolling meatballs solely for the purpose of making this pie. I’ll leave it to you to find a recipe for spaghetti sauce and meatballs.
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- 600 g cooked spaghetti
- 500 g spaghetti sauce
- 50 g chopped parsley
- 150 g parmesan, grated fine
- 300 g heavy cream
- 2 Enriched Butter Crusts
- 9 meatballs, each about the size of a golf ball
Enriched Butter Crust
- 40 g egg yolks, from 2 large eggs
- 60 g cream, cold
- 275 g all-purpose flour
- 4 g salt
- 225 g butter, cold, cut in 1/2-inch cubes
Enriched Butter Crust
Place the egg yolks and cream in a small bowl and whisk them together until combined. Hold in the refrigerator until ready to use.
Place the flour and salt in a bowl and toss to combine. Transfer the bowl to the freezer for 30 minutes.
When the flour mixture has chilled for 30 minutes, remove it from the freezer, and transfer it to the bowl of a food processor along with the butter. Pulse the food processor 10 times. Now, a pulse in the food processor is not a nervous jump in which you release the pulse button as quickly as you press it. A pulse is an intentional motion, lasting at least one second, but not much longer. If you were waltzing with your food processor, you would hold the pulse button for the 1 and 2 count, releasing it on 3. After ten pulses, the butter should be broken down into nuggets ranging in size from M&Ms to Nerds. Remove the lid from the food processor and drizzle the reserved egg-cream mixture over the surface. Pulse the food processor a few more times, until the dough begins to clump together. Once the dough starts to clump together, pulse one more time to pull the moist clumps into a large mass.
Once the dough has come together, turn it out onto a lightly floured surface and continue to use your hands to press the dough together. Divide it into two pieces, and shape each piece into a disk 1-inch thick. The more evenly you press the edges of the disk, the less likely they are to crack and split when you roll your dough. Wrap these disks in plastic wrap and let them rest in your refrigerator for a minimum of 2 hours before you roll your pie crusts. The crusts will keep in your refrigerator for up to 48 hours, and your freezer for two weeks.
Spaghetti and Meatball Pie
Heat the oven to 425°F.
Place the cooked spaghetti, spaghetti sauce, and chopped parsley in a medium-sized bowl and toss until even. Set aside.
Sprinkle the parmesan in an even layer on a baking sheet lined with a Silpat. Place the baking sheet in the oven and roast the cheese for 5 minutes, until it is a little oily, golden brown, and nutty-smelling. Remove the pan from the oven and transfer it to a wire rack to cool.
Once cool, transfer the roasted parmesan to the jar of a blender. Place the cream in a small pot over medium-high heat. Cook the cream until it comes to a full, rolling boil, then pour it into the blender jar with the roasted parmesan. With the blender on high, purée until velvety smooth, about 2 minutes. Transfer the parmesan cream to a bowl, and set aside at room temperature.
Roll out one disk of Enriched Butter Crust according to the instructions here.
Place the spaghetti in the pie shell. Place one of the meatballs in the center of the pie, then spread the rest around the perimeter, about an inch away from the edge. Drizzle the parmesan cream over the top so that it covers the spaghetti evenly. Set aside while you prepare the top crust.
Roll out the second Enriched Butter Crust to a diameter 2 inches larger than your pie plate.
Brush the lip of the bottom pie crust with water, then unfurl the top pie crust over the spaghetti, matching the edges with the bottom crust. Use your fingers to press the top and bottom crusts together, then use a pair of scissors to neatly trim away the rough edges, leaving 1/2 inch of crust hanging over the edge. Tuck the edge under itself, so the seam is turned in, and press the lip to lock in all the juices. Crimp the edges in any decorative style you wish, then cut a 2-inch X in the center of the pie. Fold back each resulting flap of dough, dab it with water, and secure it to the top crust, leaving a small empty square vent in the center of the pie.
Bake the pie for 15 minutes, then reduce the heat to 350°F. Bake for another 30–45 minutes, until the crust is golden brown. Remove and let rest for 15 minutes before slicing.