Easy(ish) Timpano for Two

Easy(ish) Timpano for Two

Pasta is my love language.

Pasta is comforting and warm, like a nice hug from a loved one. I love pasta, and will consume large amounts of it when available‒much like TV and movies. These are some of the things  Jared and I have in common, and they continue to bond us. However it’s funny, because there is a family joke that he watches a lot of TV, but secretly I watch more TV. I’ve partially built my career on being able to watch TV anytime I want. #LifeofaDigitalNomad

I consume a lot of content, so when I want to move away from TV, I switch to YouTube. I about died when I found Binging with Babish, even more so when watching this particular episode. Classic Whiskey Sour

I am in love with Binging with Babish.

Andrew Rea (AKA Babish) is the mastermind behind Binging with Babish, and I dare you to try and only watch one episode—I love to follow up watching each of his videos with a viewing of the TV show or movie that inspired the dish. The premise of his channel is to make food inspired by popular (or obscure) movies and TV shows. It’s one of those concepts that makes you both delighted, because it’s such a cool idea, and ire-filled because you didn’t think of it first!

In my favorite episode, he makes il Timpano from a movie called Big Night starring Stanley Tucci and Tony Shaloub (recently in the Marvelous Mrs. Maisel - WATCH IT NOW) as well as other big names like Alison Janney (queen!), and a teenage Marc Antony. Tucci and Shaloub are brothers trying to run their Italian restaurant and chase the American dream. However, because the brothers aren’t making enough money, they cook up (HA!) a plan to bring attention to the restaurant, and it all hinges on one BIG NIGHT filled with decadent food, mischievous fun, and bittersweet, true love.  

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The Timpano is impressive.

If you don’t know what it is, it’s like the best lasagna you’ve ever had made love to the best pie you’ve ever had. It’s layered meat, cheese, and pasta inside of a pasta like bread crust. It’s also known as a Timballo, named for its kettledrum shape.  A true timpano is made in a 15 qt timpano bowl. Babish makes his in a 5 quart dutch oven, but we’ll make ours in a 2.5 quart dutch oven.

Our recipe will save you a little bit of time, since we recommend getting a lot of the ingredients pre-made.

We also recommend purchasing the highest quality ingredients to at least pretend to get close to Binging with Babish’s ‘from-scratch’ version. His recipe is a two day food prep affair. This version will take about 5-6 hours, including both prep and bake time.


Do it for love. Right?

We did make the crust from scratch, and that was totally worth it. Jared is the baker in our house, so I made...ahem...asked him to work the dough for me. Take it from him, it’s a real upper body workout.

Although we take a few shortcuts, the unveiling and presentation will still impress your Valentine (or your Galentines or any Valentine’s party guests!

This is the smaller version, but it’s enough to share (maybe depending on how well the date goes).  We split our Timpano between 4 people and had about half left over.

Easy (ish) Timpano for Two

  • 15 ounces bread flour*
  • 2 whole eggs plus 4 egg yolks
  • 4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 pound genoa salami, sliced into 1/2” rounds
  • 1/4 pound grated aged provolone
  • 1/2 pound low-moisture mozzarella, cut into 1” cubes
  • 7 hard-boiled eggs, sliced in half
  • 3 (25 oz) jars of  Italian red sauce 
  • 8 high quality meatballs**
  • 3 cups of elocodali pasta, par boiled until very al dente, tossed with enough sauce to prevent sticking***
  • Whole nutmeg
  1. Pour the flour into a large mixing bowl and form a large well in the center. Pour in your eggs, 2 tablespoons of olive oil, and salt.

  2. Beat everything together until mostly combined.

  3. Pour out the contents onto a baking mat or clean kitchen counter and knead the dough with your hands until the dough is smooth and not tacky. Wrap it in plastic wrap and allow it to rest for 30 minutes.

  4. Preheat oven to 375F.  Coat the interior of a 5-quart enameled dutch oven with the remaining 2 tablespoons olive oil.  Unwrap dough, dust it with flour, and on a well-floured work surface, begin rolling out into one large disc.  Flour as necessary, and roll out until 1/8” thick.  

  5. Gently place into the dutch oven, pressing down into the corners, making sure there is still 8” or more hanging outside the dutch oven.

  6. Start filling the Timpano with a layer of cooked pasta (about 1.5 cups) and a small amount of sauce.  Begin forming layers using 1/2 of each of the fillings: eggs, then meatballs, cheeses, and salami.  Add a bit of sauce between each layer or so (use up at least 2 of the jars for the Timpano).

  7. Repeat until the Timpano is filled to the brim.  

  8. Finish with an extra layer of pasta and top with aged provolone to help prevent the ingredients from leaking later on, after the Timpano is flipped.  Fold the excess dough up from the sides and press down on top, sealing shut.  

  9. Bake with the lid on for 1 hour and then remove the lid for the next hour for a crispy crust until internal temperature registers at least 125F, and exterior is golden brown.  

  10. Allow Timpano to rest for one hour before placing a large cutting board or plate over top of the dutch oven, and inverting the Timpano onto it.  Cut into slices, and serve atop a pool of warm sauce, grating fresh nutmeg over top.

*Babish uses tipo 00 flour, which can be hard and expensive to get your hands on.
** We picked up Italian Style Meatballs from a meat counter.
***Babish makes Gargenelli pasta, which is tough to get in stores. A thin penne would work also

If you haven’t figured it out yet, our theme for February is love. But that doesn’t necessarily mean being in a relationship.

How are you going to show love to yourself or to the people you care about this month?
We’d love to know in the comments!
Just keep it clean people. ;-)


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