Torta de Fiambre – Uruguay’s take on deep-dish pizza

torta de fiambre

Pizza! Deep-dish pizza from Uruguay! I bet you have never tried this or even heard of it before. Let me introduce you to the gourmet-style version of the torta de fiambre (ham and cheese pie), which is famous in Uruguay and usually consists of ham and cheese layered between an empanada-style of dough. Think of lots of melted cheese, usually at least two different types, good-quality ham and some flaky empanada dough.  That’s the basic recipe. But I am going to add some more ingredients and make it gourmet-style, I will go crazy and add eggs, tomatos, and a seasoning called chimichurri. Did I get you? I hope I did because I am taking part in the “You had me at pizza!” blog event (only in German) organized by Marc with the wonderful bilingual blog Bake to the Roots (English and German).

you had me at pizza flyer

I am really excited I get to introduce you to a Uruguayan dish, I bet none of my readers have tried anything from the country I was born in. Uruguayan cuisine is very much influenced by the Spanish and Italian cuisine. On top of that I hope you know that beef, beef, and beef again is what Uruguay exports the most. Did you know that Uruguay has four times more cows in the country than actually people? If you are a vegetarian or even vegan, you will have a hard time in Uruguay. Meat can be found in abundance.

torta de fiambre

The reason why I am mentioning this is because the pizza recipe I am showing you here does NOT contain beef, but pork. It may sound weird, but if beef can be found in abundance, pork is what is saved for special occassions. Fiambre actually is one type of ham you can find in Uruguay, usually sliced into rather thick slices. The idea of the torta de fiambre is that you layer ham and different tpyes of cheese and wrap them in a dough like a meat pie. And since pork is special, so is this torta!

When I did research, I found many versions only mentioning ham and cheese as filling, not even giving any amounts. I found youtube videos by Uruguayan Latinas, happily adding anything from camembert to a creamy sauce which was poured on top of the ham. I found lots, and lots of different types of dough, many with a large amount of eggs, some more elastic than others. The one I settled for at the end is from a recipe book by a famous Uruguayan chef called Hugo Soca. He does use it for some other type of pie, but after trying different recipes, I felt his gave the best results. Flaky, but elastic, easy to prepare and even easier to handle.

The secret ingredient to make this even more Uruguayan is the seasoning called chimichurri. Don’t panic, this only means a large mix of herbs you can easily chop up yourself. It contains parsley, garlic, oregano, thyme and other rather typical herbs, so don’t worry, you will be able to reproduce it. Uruguayans are obsessed with chimichurri. Usually it is served mixed with olive oil (did I mention the Italian influence?) and some water. You will find fresh versions, but also dried herbs, which you then mix into the oil. I have seen Uruguayans use it like others use salt. It is put on everything and, of course, will be the base for marinating beef. A Uruguayan steak without chimichurri is like Christmas without presents. For that reason I thought the pizza might be OK with some chimichurri.

torta de fiambre

But enough talking now, let’s finally get to the chase: torta de fiambre, Uruguay’s take on deep-dish pizza!

PS: If you rather have a more traditional take on deep-dish pizza, I also have a recipe with lots of tomato sauce and mozzarella. Check that version here.

I am also taking part in the link party Fiesta Friday. If you are a food blogger and would like to share your links, please go here.

Credit dough: From the book “Nuestras recetas de siempre“, page 152 (Spanish/English)

Credit chimichurri: Latin Mag (German)

Torta de Fiambre - Uruguay's deep-dish pizza

Print Recipe
Serves: One 24 cm ∅ springform Cooking Time: 40min preparation + 35min baking

Ingredients

  • Dough
  • 460 grams of all-purpose flour
  • 40 grams cornstarch
  • 40 grams of softened butter
  • 1 egg
  • 50 milliliters of canola oil
  • 100-170 milliliters of water
  • 1 egg for egg wash

  • Filling
  • 200 grams of ham of various assortments (e.g. ham, chorizo, jamón serrano, etc.)
  • 200 grams of grated mozzarella
  • 100 grams of grated gouda or cheddar
  • 3 hard-boiled eggs
  • 2-3 large tomatos

  • Chimichurri Seasoning
  • 2 springs of parsley
  • 1 shallot
  • 2 cloves of garlic
  • 1 lime
  • 1 fresh chilli or 1 teaspoon of chilli powder
  • 50 milliliters of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon of black pepper
  • 1 teapsoon of coarse salt
  • 1 teaspoon of dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon of dried oregano

Instructions

1

For the dough put all ingredients except for the egg used for egg wash and water into a bowl.

2

Add about 100 milliliters of water and knead mixture with your heads. Work the dough for a minute before adding a little bit of water, a tablespoon at a time.

3

Knead the dough for a few minutes before adding more water. Sometimes the dough requires more water than other times, I usually need between 120-170 milliliters. You should have an elastic, shiny dough at the end, not sticky, but easy to work with, pulling away from the bowl easily.

4

Form into a ball and cover in plastic wrap in the fridge for at least half an hour.

5

Meanwhile prepare the filling by first boiling and slicing the eggs and seeding the tomatos. It is really important to seed the tomatos to be sure they don't contain too much water. Slice tomatos after seeding.

6

For the chimichurri seasoning, chop up parsley, (chilli), and shallot thinnly. Mince garlic and put all into bowl.

7

Press out lime and pour lime juice on top of your herbs. Fill up with olive oil.

8

Add the dried herbs (also chilli), stir and let sit until you are ready.

9

Continue by taking out the dough. Divide into three equal parts. Roll out the first part into a circle a little bigger than 24cm in diameter to cover the springform. I usually put the springform right on top of the dough and cut out the shape.

10

Lightly oil the springform and place the rolled-out dough inside.

11

Roll the second part of the dough into three long ropes. Place them all around the sides of the springform and be sure to cover the sides fully.

12

Now start layering: first half of the mozzarella and at least a tablespoon of chimichurri seasoning, then half of the ham.

13

The next layer should be tomatos and eggs. Add at least a tablespoon of chimichurri again.

14

The next layer should be almost all the cheese and the rest of the ham. Finish with cheese and, yes, you guessed right, chimichurri.

15

Preheat oven to 220 degrees.

16

Roll out the third part of the dough into a circle and cover the torta with it. Be sure to seal the torta completely, cutting off any overhang and make sure that it looks nice. Prick with a fork about 5-6 times before baking on lower rack for about 25 minutes.

17

Take out torta and brush with egg wash. You can also sprinkle with sea salt (see visual) and bake for another 10 minutes.

18

Wait a few minutes before taking out of the springform and serve immediately.

19

Any Uruguayan would use the leftover chimichurri as additional seasoning on the hot pizza slices.

Notes

This is a pizza that freezes beautifully. Best is to have the slices cut beforehand. The chimichurri keeps about two weeks in a sealed container if kept in the fridge.

torta de fiambre

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9 Comments

  • Reply
    Candi
    Friday July 21st, 2017 at 11:59 AM

    This looks delicious Jenny!! 🙂

    • Reply
      Jenny
      Friday July 21st, 2017 at 12:00 PM

      Thank you, Candi!

  • Reply
    CHCooks
    Friday July 21st, 2017 at 02:39 PM

    This looks so delicious, Jenny. I love the idea of a deep dish pizza and yes, I have never tried anything from Uruguay before but you have intrigued me enough. I am going to however see how I can turn this into vegetarian (haha I can see you nodding your head) 😀

    Thanks for bringing to this Fiesta Friday!

    • Reply
      Jenny
      Friday July 21st, 2017 at 02:41 PM

      Feel free to swap the ham for other vegetables. Another common mix is spinach with boiled eggs. Let me know if you try it!

  • Reply
    Mike Nguyen
    Saturday August 12th, 2017 at 08:02 PM

    This looks amazing! Can’t wait to try this

    • Reply
      Jenny
      Saturday August 12th, 2017 at 08:17 PM

      Let me know if you do!

  • Reply
    Streetfoodjunkies
    Tuesday September 5th, 2017 at 10:56 PM

    Liebe Jenny, dein Rezept merke ich mir für den Herbst. Das ist bestimmt keine leichte Kost, aber deine Pizza sieht nach Wohlfühlessen pur aus 🙂 Viele Grüße, Katharina

    • Reply
      Jenny
      Wednesday September 6th, 2017 at 07:42 AM

      Hallo Katharina,
      man wird von einem großen Stück gut satt, das stimmt. Freue mich, wenn du dich meldest, wenn du sie nachbäckst.

  • Reply
    Streetfoodjunkies
    Tuesday September 5th, 2017 at 11:00 PM

    Liebe Jenny, dein Rezept sieht fantastisch aus. Das hebe ich mir für den Herbst auf, so richtiges Wohlfühlessen… nicht gerade leicht, aber bestimmt super lecker 🙂 Viele Grüße, Katharina

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