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Pizza Toppings: Simple/Elaborate, Traditional/Unusual

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It's probably my imagination, but I feel like my rosemary was 3" taller this morning (it rained heavily overnight), so I made a very herb-heavy pie tonight. I made a pesto from rosemary, thyme, black pepper, and garlic, smeared that on a thin crust, topped with crushed tomatoes, then olives, and finally fresh mozzarella for the last 30 seconds of the bake. You've probably already gathered that I love olives... this pizza was excellent.

 

20200412-174203.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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Posted (edited)

@Chris Hennes: Your crust structure looks interesting - there is no distinct cornicione (in the sense of stronger inflated dough). I know this style from several places here in Germany and always thought of it as a more “even” cooking style to avoid char. Is that what you aim for ? Do you roll out your crust instead of stretching ? 


Edited by Duvel (log)

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7 hours ago, Duvel said:

@Chris Hennes: Your crust structure looks interesting - there is no distinct cornicione (in the sense of stronger inflated dough). I know this style from several places here in Germany and always thought of it as a more “even” cooking style to avoid char. Is that what you aim for ? Do you roll out your crust instead of stretching ? 

 

I stretch the dough, not roll it, but in my experience there is a relatively narrow age window in which a sourdough crust will give that style of inflation. Plus, of course, you have to be making a thinner crust style, which I only do a fraction of the time. So it's not that I am aiming for one particular result or other, I am mostly just accepting the variety that comes with a naturally leavened dough prepared days in advance. Right now my idea of a "varied diet" is different styles of pizza each night!

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Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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This is based on something I saw in Reinhart's Perfect Pan Pizza. He prefers a chunky tomato sauce, and puts chunks of cheese both below the sauce and above it. This is the last of my previous batch of sourdough with the added corn flour. For the cheese I used Cabot Extra Sharp Cheddar.

 

20200417-183513.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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somewhere in the late 50's early 60's the concept of spam+pineapple hit the east coast.

pizza places had (to the effect) 'Hawaiian' style on the menus in the "greater Philadelphia area"

 

we do the 'traditional' stuff - but other than crust+tomato sauce+mozz cheese, the combos vary 'at will'

pepperoni

sausage - fresh, cured, summer, any eastern 'ring' type dried or fresh....

ham

anchovy

green/red/yellow pepper

roasted pepper

pimento

olives of every/any sort

broccoli bits

cauliflower slicettes

mushroom

onion

pickled pearl onion

baby corn ears

sprouts, of any kind

leek

scallion

shallot

and not infrequently the cheese gets mixed with other cheddars/havarti/feta/brie....

 

well, the anchovies only seldom....because I like anchovy chunks on crackers with a beer chaser....

 

in our house, pizza can be an adventure!

 

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I'm sure there is a better thread for take-out pizza vs home cooked, but I guess I can share these toppings as something I might try....maybe...someday 🙃.

My cousin and his wife, who live in Queens, are currently in Rio and shared these photos of a delivery pizza they ordered.

Toppings on the Portuguesa pizza include  tomato (no sauce), ham, chouriço sausage, cheese, onion, hard boiled egg, green pepper, olives and oregano. 

7A6CD72A-6DA4-4504-AD8A-BDA8E174B368.thumb.jpeg.83a7aab956772b7eb06853381385c4f3.jpeg

The whole thing looks a bit pale to me. My cousin said the crust was lacking but did not complain.  

Considering the way it's packaged (and likely transported, see the last photo) a certain amount of steaming seems unavoidable. 

DEEA4A0B-D5A7-49CE-8033-E38EF769909D.thumb.jpeg.dd1c1f3453d2ca74d3d48edd4ae36a6c.jpeg

Apparently, ketchup and mustard are standard pizza condiments.  

A42BB1A5-5699-41DB-815E-BD3DC369A29F.thumb.jpeg.3379beb433a3d70ebbe64c945913913c.jpeg

 

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2 hours ago, blue_dolphin said:

Apparently, ketchup and mustard are standard pizza condiments.

 

This is the part that made me go "huh"! 

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Nancy Smith, aka "Smithy"
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"Every day should be filled with something delicious, because life is too short not to spoil yourself. " -- Ling (with permission)

"There comes a time in every project when you have to shoot the engineer and start production." -- author unknown

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As part of my usual weekend exercise, a pizza baked with dotted fresh goat cheese, then topped with thinly sliced pink grilled lamb filet and sprinkled with fresh mint ...

 

6CC6533E-C2A5-488A-A750-469547F54136.thumb.jpeg.cd376ef89f69815831148db7dde4cf23.jpeg

 

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Here's a wacky one that actually works: harzer kase (aka kvargla, it's a "hand" cheese), čabajska sausage (or any kind of seasoned ground pork, bacon might work, too), and a few caraway seeds, then after baking top with a little fresh marjoram and beer pickled onions.  Who knew harzer cheese could melt?!

 

On 1/21/2004 at 2:35 PM, Mr. Blister said:

My new crack is a thin crust pizza topped with veal sausage, dijon and brie.

Once strawberries start showing up, try: brie, strawberries, very thin slices of lemon, and some kind of "soft" deli meat such as mortadella.  Drizzle good balsamic on it when done.

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1 hour ago, jedovaty said:

@Chris Hennes How long does it take to get such an even and thorough olive distribution?!  That is amazing!

 

I never really thought about it. A couple of minutes, I guess? I don't scatter them from above, I place them individually.

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Chris Hennes
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No-knead crust, béchamel, mozzarella, ricotta, thyme. It's basically the recipe from Modernist Bread, though I didn't make a particularly Modernist béchamel, and I might have snuck some red pepper flakes under there. Really nice Neapolitan-style crust texture on this one (at least, compared to what I usually make!).

 

20200421-174205.jpg

 

20200421-180050.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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Same crust as yesterday, but a day older (so quite a bit more structure). I messed up the first pie and wound up with a calzone...

20200422-174308.jpg

 

The second pizza turned out as intended: crushed tomatoes, rosemary, dried oregano, red pepper flakes, black pepper, and part-skim mozzarella.

20200422-175624.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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I'm feeling kind of broken-record-ish here, but this is the last of the gorgonzola, so I guess I'll move on with my life soon. Brussels sprouts, walnuts and gorgonzola, on crushed tomatoes, Modernist Bread no-knead dough, retarded in the fridge an extra day because last nights dinner plans changed at the last minute.

 

20200424-182257.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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Posted (edited)
On 3/30/2020 at 3:38 PM, rotuts said:

@Katie Meadow

 

I think there are many 

 

just they don't yet want to admit it

Not me.

If a topping doesn't add grease it is heresy

Veg like what you might find in a normal salad are exempt.


Edited by gfweb (log)
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No-knead crust (same dough as yesterday, so now three days old), crushed tomatoes, fresh rosemary, dried oregano, sliced garlic, chile flakes, olives, and chèvre. 

 

20200425-191640.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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“Greek” pizza: feta & quark cream, potatoes & olives, topped with thinly sliced veal fillet & fresh mint post bake.

 

5DF684E2-2543-47F3-AC29-02F09A02F8CD.thumb.jpeg.85e1036ddaf4a9fa227cddb0fc3836b3.jpeg
 

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Finocchiona Pizza: the sauce is fennel, black pepper, and red pepper, toasted, tossed with crushed walnuts, and then finished/deglazed with cream. The toppings are part-skim mozzarella, sautéed scallions, and sautéed fennel bulb. Maybe a little rich, to be honest...

 

20200427-175253.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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Posted (edited)

A (not) classic tarte flambée

IMG_2383.thumb.jpeg.45554aecd525f218352c9a25c63cfbd3.jpeg

Starting with a recipe from Melissa Clark's Dinner in French, I used a mix of whole milk ricotta (homemade) and crème fraîche (organic heavy cream that was not so fraîche anymore and had thickened of its own volition), nutmeg and white pepper. 

Diced Broadbent's country ham,  thinly sliced red onion and asparagus.

 

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Edited by blue_dolphin (log)
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On 4/12/2020 at 6:59 PM, Chris Hennes said:

It's probably my imagination, but I feel like my rosemary was 3" taller this morning (it rained heavily overnight), so I made a very herb-heavy pie tonight. I made a pesto from rosemary, thyme, black pepper, and garlic, smeared that on a thin crust, topped with crushed tomatoes, then olives, and finally fresh mozzarella for the last 30 seconds of the bake. You've probably already gathered that I love olives... this pizza was excellent.

 

20200412-174203.jpg

 

I am a rosemary fan but, i use it so sparingly that it just has hints of it.. How strong is a rosemary pesto.. Is the rosemary the primary  green or is it rosemary added to parsley and basil..  Also, what are you cooking your pizzas in, they look really good

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11 hours ago, BKEats said:

 

I am a rosemary fan but, i use it so sparingly that it just has hints of it.. How strong is a rosemary pesto.. Is the rosemary the primary  green or is it rosemary added to parsley and basil..  Also, what are you cooking your pizzas in, they look really good

 

Rosemary was the main herb: it was not intended to be mildly-flavored! There was no basil or parsley. I also didn't put all that much of it on, it was not the "sauce" of that pizza, just an additional flavor component. Still, there was no mistaking the rosemary! I think the pizza in that photo was baked in a 14" pizza pan, placed on a bread stone, probably preheated to 500°F or so. The more recent pies (with the more Neapolitan look to them) are baked on a pizza steel under a broiler, following the temperature/hydration guidance from Modernist Bread. 


Chris Hennes
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On 4/24/2020 at 8:25 PM, gfweb said:

If a topping doesn't add grease it is heresy

 

This pie's for you, then :) -- a totally different sort of "Finocchiona"! The sauce is crushed tomatoes, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Cheese is part skim mozzarella. Topping is homemade finocchiona salume.

 

20200428-182222.jpg

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Chris Hennes
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chennes@egullet.org

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Just now, Chris Hennes said:

 

This pie's for you, then :) -- a totally different sort of "Finocchiona"! The sauce is crushed tomatoes, black pepper, and red pepper flakes. Cheese is part skim mozzarella. Topping is homemade finocchiona salume.

 

20200428-182222.jpg

 

 Perfection!

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On ‎4‎/‎24‎/‎2020 at 8:00 PM, Chris Hennes said:

I'm feeling kind of broken-record-ish here, but this is the last of the gorgonzola, so I guess I'll move on with my life soon.

 

 

 

Please don't.   The thread is fascinating, as are the pizzas being generated.  Can you tell me a bit more about the current cooking technique.   I have a pizza steel.   Do you pre-heat the steel prior to putting the pizza under the broiler?  In a 500 degree oven?  or under the broiler?   How far do you set the pizza from the heating element?

 

My favorite odd combination, if you are doing requests, is tomato sauce, smoked mozzarella and canned artichokes

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48 minutes ago, Dr. Teeth said:

Can you tell me a bit more about the current cooking technique.   I have a pizza steel.   Do you pre-heat the steel prior to putting the pizza under the broiler?  In a 500 degree oven?  or under the broiler?   How far do you set the pizza from the heating element?

 

I have the 1/4" baking steel: I preheat at 500°F for an hour, then turn on the broiler, then pop the pizza in the oven. Modernist Bread wants you to wait five minutes after turning on the boiler, but with my oven that's not as effective as turning it on and loading right away. I'm using their recommended dough hydration percentage for that oven temperature, and I'm basically happy with the results. I'm 3 1/2" from the heating element, which is as close to my oven's "sweet spot" as I can get using the built-in rack positions.

 

I've got a batch of the Modernist Neapolitan dough in the works right now, so tomorrow night I should be ready to compare those results to the current no-knead. It's a tough life, testing all this pizza. :) 

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Chris Hennes
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