Mortadella (finely ground pork sausage with pieces of pistachio and spices) and a couple tablespoons of wine add tremendous depth of flavor to this traditional comfort food. Serve it with several vegetable side dishes, sparkling water, and a bottle of wine.From the book "Lucinda's Rustic Italian Kitchen," by Lucinda Scala Quinn (Wiley).


  • cup milk

  • 1 slice bread, crust removed (1 ½-inch)

  • 1 pound ground pork

  • 1 pound ground veal or beef

  • pound mortadella, minced

  • 1 small onion, finely chopped (about ½ cup)

  • ½ cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese

  • ¼ cup pistachio nuts, chopped

  • 2 cloves garlic, minced

  • 2 large eggs, lightly beaten

  • 2 tablespoons white or red wine

  • ½ teaspoon coarse salt

  • ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.

  2. Heat the milk in a small pan until warm but not scalded. Turn off the heat. Place the bread in the milk and let sit to absorb the milk, turning once, about 1 minute per side. Remove the bread to a board, finely chop it, and place the bread in a large bowl.

  3. Add the pork, veal, mortadella, onion, parsley, cheese, nuts, garlic, eggs, wine, salt, and pepper to the bread. Using your hand, mix to combine completely. Form into an oval-shaped loaf and place in a large baking dish. Cook for 55 minutes. Let rest 10 minutes before serving.

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