Potato pie

Let's go down to Salento in the Puglia region of Italy where we find a recipe for potato pie, a very tasty dish with an onion and tomato sauce fllling. This is the classic filling but there are variants which use anchovies, tuna, or ham and cheese. In Salento it is often prepared for a picnic or a Sunday spent at the beach. It's very versatile and can be served either as a main or side dish, hot or cold.


  • potatoes 1500 grams
  • eggs 2 units
  • salt
  • pepper
  • spicy pecorino cheese 25 grams
  • Parmesan 25 grams
  • breadcrumbs 50 grams
  • tinned tomatoes 500 grams
  • black olives A handful of pitted black olives
  • capers A handful of capers
  • onions Two medium onions
  • wild fennel A handful of wild fennel in vinegar
90 minutes Total time
30 minutes Active time
Serves 6 persons
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Peel and boil the potatoes, then mash them, put them in a bowl and add the eggs, cheese, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper. Mix all ingredients until smooth. Oil the bottom of an oven-proof dish and spread a 1cm layer of the potato mixture over the base of the dish, using wettened hands. Meanwhile fry the sliced onions until softened in plenty of olive oil, then add the olives, capers, fennel and tomatoes. Season with some salt. Cook for about twenty minutes then spread it over the potato mixture in the oven dish; finally finish by covering with another layer of the potato mixture, making sure your hands are kept wet. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs surface. Bake at 200 degrees centigrade for 25-30 minutes. Let it stand before you tuck in. This potato pie is even better the next day.

Boil the potatoes in advance: it will be easier to mash them
In Italian this recipe is known as 'pitta di patate', where 'pitta' roughly means 'to paint': originally the surface of this dish would have had decorations on it

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