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Pizza and its Cover Story

 
 
Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 08:36 pm
Out of respect for Osso, I will not digress as to minnows....

RH
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 08:45 pm
Minnows?

I'm not in a mad typing mood and I've got a long post hardly started re sfinciuni. And a movie I want to watch. (The Leopard). Meaning, tell me about minnows..

Salted minnows in olive oil?
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 08:56 pm
Carol Field (The Italian Baker, 1985 - my copy opens by itself) distinguishes between Pizza Siciliana from Palermo and the Sfinciuni from Palermo..
and, aha, I notice she has a Calzone recipe too (Apuglia).

I'll summarize the Pizza Siciliana as a dough rolled out to be a quarter inch thick, and a topping of anchovies cut into small pieces, fresh Caciocavallo or mild Provolone, chopped oil packed artichoke hearts, Sfinciuni tomato sauce (wait, will post in next recipe), dried oregano, salt, pepper, olive oil, prosciutto sliced and chopped, and 3 or 3 1/2 ounces of shredded mozzarella. There's a twice baked thing happening in the recipe, with the topping ingredients divided, the dough and first bunch of ingredients going in for 25-30 minutes, and then the rest of the ingredients piled on, for another 5 to 10 minutes. Field describes it as a juicy light pizza.


Here's the book, lots of good bread related recipes in it.
A2K amazon link for the Italian Baker






I pooped out, more on sfinciuni and calzone tomorrow.
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 09:30 pm
We had pizza in Sicily, but I can't recall if that was in Palermo or Agrigento. Everything about it was different from what I think of as pizza, but it was wonderful. I don't remember the word "sfinciuni" - I think it was just called pizza. But that may have been for the tourists.
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 09:33 pm
mac, was it one layer of dough or two with stuff in between? (or can you remember?) You went to Sicily! Any time you want to tell about it, you've got an ear.
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hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 10:21 pm
When I lived in Munich the pizza would come delieved in a huge rectangle box, cut in squares 3x6. The crust was rolled out like NY style only the crust was supper salty. It would have some freaky toppings as well, such as corn and peppercini
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 10:34 pm
Corn!

That reminds me of something you could get at Gelson's (expensive Los Angeles area grocery store) deli, either pizza or foccacia, with carrots on top....
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 10:56 pm
So, did you like the pizza with corn?
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Rockhead
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 11:06 pm
Live with corn, love Zaa, can't think of mixin' the two....

RH
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sat 9 Feb, 2008 11:17 pm
Me either, but then I also can't imagine liking ham and pineapple pizza..
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rainkeeper
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Feb, 2008 03:25 am
Ham and pineapple mmmmmmm Very Happy That sounds lovely.
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Feb, 2008 10:05 am
Shudders, while smiling...
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Feb, 2008 11:31 am
osso, I went to Italy in 1993 with a group. The whole trip was 12 or 14 days, and we spent the last three days in Sicily.

We stayed one night each in Palermo, Agrigento, and Taormina, flying in to Palermo and out of Catania.

It was lovely and rather tropical - flowers everywhere and interesting architecture. We saw several churches. At one in Palermo, there seemed to be continuous weddings. We saw many wedding parties while we stood in the back and then had lunch across the piazza.

We saw plenty of other tourists, but my favorite thing about Sicily was that I didn't feel that millions of tourists had passed through before us. I guess it seemed unspoiled, at least as compared to Rome, Milan, Naples, and other places we went.
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Feb, 2008 11:41 am
My husband and I went in '93 too. Amusing to think we could have crossed paths, however unlikely. Lessee, that was Rome, Ostia Antica, Villa d'Este @Tivoli, Siena, Arezzo, Perugia, just us on trains and buses, staying in cheap but interesting alberghi. (Makes me hungry to think about that trip.)

Or thirsty.. the perfect iced coffee in Arezzo..
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mac11
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Feb, 2008 11:49 am
Wow, we could have crossed paths! We were there the first couple of weeks of June. (I remember that I saw Da Vinci's Last Supper on my birthday.) The whole trip was Venice, Florence, Assisi, Orvieto, Rome, Naples with a side trip to Capri, then our Sicily adventure, then back up to Milan for a couple of days.

I'm planning a trip to Italy in 2009 to celebrate my 50th birthday, so I've been reminiscing about the '93 trip a lot.
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Feb, 2008 12:17 pm
I forgot Orvieto...

We went in October that year, so the path crossing is more complicated by time, but still amusing.

I kept diaries on my three trips. The one in '88 sounds written by a blubbering babbling fool, as if no one else had ever travelled. The one in '93 was probably a slight improvement but still unbearably instructional, and the one in '99 I never finished typing out completely, but part of it is here on a2k; still written by a seeming loony, but big improvement over '88. I may see if I can find the first two and type them up in original writing, if I can manage not to edit the euphoria out of them - not so much for others to read but as a way of marking my own take on things.

'09.... I'm already excited for you. Hope you do a thread on it.
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hawkeye10
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Feb, 2008 04:24 pm
I did not care for the corn, but loved the peppercini, had never heard of them before they showed up at the door on a pizza one day.

At the time I was enjoying going native. This was my first time living outside of the USA and since I was going to be in Munich for several years I wanted to go native. If this is how they do it in Munich then that was what I was going to do. My fav thing was Wieswurst (veal sauages) and beer for breakfast....good stuff. Second was sitting in a biergarten with a maas of beer and a pretzel (and yes there is a pattern here). Anyway, I tried to like the pizza, eventually though the salty crust got to me. Maybe I did not drink enough beer with it.
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Sun 10 Feb, 2008 04:32 pm
I've had very salty foccacia, from a person with ties to the Liguria region of italy. I think my first pizza in italy (I get confused in memory) was the very plain one at campo dei Fiori: all it had on it was thin sliced wurstel, and we got beers with that..
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ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Feb, 2008 09:50 am
Okay, on to Carol Field and sfinciuni. This one is a one layer dough pizza...

(note from me, I happen to despise glassed jars of marinated artichoke hearts - too strong - if I want marinated I'll do my own. I've never see plain artichoke hearts just packed in oil. Thus, I'd use water packed artichoke hearts, drained and dried, and maybe then drizzled with some oil).


Sfinciuni alla Palermitana

Sfinciuni is the quintessential pizza of Palermo. Some versions, like this one that uses Sicilian pizza dough, are rustic and countrified, while others, such as the ones made famous by the nuns of the monastery of San Vito, which encloses a meat filling between two very fine layers of dough, are much more elegant. (See earlier recipe in this thread, Osso). People pick up a slice or two at bakeries or fast-food shops to eat as they walk around the city, and sometimes there are even vendors in side squares selling sfinciuni right off their carts. They are usually baked in big rectangular pans and cut into whatever size matches the buyer's appetite.

Makes on 15-inch round pizza or one 12 x 17 inch pizza

Tomato Sauce
2 medium-size yellow onions (about 1 pound, 450 grams), chopped
4 cups water
2 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 anchovy, chopped

Simmer the onions in the water in a covered heavy saucepan at least 30 minutes but preferably 1 hour. Stir in the tomato paste, oil, and anchovy and simmer covered at least 1 more hour; the longer you cook the sauce, the lighter and sweeter in taste it will be. Cool to room temperature.

sfinciuni
Pizza alla Siciliana dough*, made through the first rising
3 to 4 tablepoons grated fresh Caciocavollo or mild Provolone cheese
3 ounces (85 grams) artichoke hearts (packed in oil), drained and chopped
1/4 cup plain fresh bread crumbs, lightly toasted
1 to 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus additional for brushing the crust

Shaping
Knead the dough briefly on a lightly floured surface and shape it into a thick disk. Roll it out to fit a 15-inch round pizza pan, leaving a thick edge. Lightly oil the pan and place the dough in the pan. Cover with a towel and let rise for 30 minutes.

Sprinkle the cheese and artichoke hearts over the dough; then spoon on the tomato sauce and sprinkle with the bread crumbs. Drizzle the oil over the surface.

Baking
Heat the oven to 400 F. Use a baking stone if you have one (turn oven on 30 minutes before baking) and place the pan directly on the preheated stone. Bake until the dough is golden, 20 to 25 minutes. Immediately brush the crust with oil. Serve hot.



* Pizza alla Siciliana dough (recipe extracted from another pizza recipe a few pages earlier)

2 1/2 teaspoons (1 package) active dry yeast or 1 small cake (18 grams) fresh yeast
1 1/2 teaspoons sugar
1 1/2 cups plus 1 tablespoon lukewarm water
2 tablespoons (25 grams) lard or olive oil
1 1/2 teaspoons (8 grams) salt
4 1/4 (550 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour

By hand -
Stir the yeast and sugar into the wataer in a large mixing bowl; let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. Stir in the lard. Whisk in the salt and 2 cups of the flour, 1 cup at a time; add the remaining flour and stir until the dough comes together. Knead on a lightly floured surface until soft and velvety, 10 to 12 minutes.

By mixer -
Stir the yeast and sugar into the water in a mixer bowl; let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. Mix in the lard with the paddle. Add the salt and flour and mix 1 to 2 minutes. Change to the dough hook and knead at medium speed until sorg and velvety, 3 to 4 minutes.

By processor - Stir the yeast and sugar into 1/2 cup warm water in a small bowl; let stand until creamy, about 10 minutes. Place the flour and salt in a food processor fitted with the dough blade and process with several pulces to sift. With the machine running, pour the dissolved yeast, 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon cold water, and the lard through the feed tube and process until the dough gathers into a ball. Process no longer than 20 seconds to knead. Finish kneading by hand on a lightly floured surface unti smooth, soft, and velvety.



Rising
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and let rise until almost doubled, about 1 hour. (This is where the sfinciuni recipe picks up the dough, I think, so I'd not go further on this....Osso).

Punch it down, cover again, and let rise just 20 minutes.

Shaping
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and shape into a thick disk. Roll it out with a rolling pin to a 12-inch circle, about 1.4 " thick, leaving a thick edge. Turn the dough over several times as you roll it, so that it won't shrink back later. Place on an oiled baking sheet, a peel sprinkled with cornmeal, or a 12-inch oiled pizza pan. then add topping.
0 Replies
 
ossobuco
 
  1  
Reply Mon 11 Feb, 2008 10:29 am
Calzone Pugliesi, also from Carol Field's The Italian Baker
Half-Moon-Shaped Filled Pizza from Puglia

(Aha, this dough is different!)


Makes 6 or 7 calzoni.

Dough
2 1/2 teaspoons (1 package) active dry yeast or 1 small cake (18 grams) fresh yeast
4 teaspoons (20 grams) sugar
3 to 4 tablespoons warm water
1 cup plus 1 tablespoon milk
1 egg
3 3/4 cups (500 grams) unbleached all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons salt

By hand
Stir the yeast and sugar into 3 tablespoons warm water in a small bowl; let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes. Whisk the milk and egg together. Mix the flour and salt, make a mound of it in a larger bowl or on a well-floured work surface, and then make a large well in the center. Gradually pour the dissolved yeast and milk mixture into the well, working the flour from the inside of the well into the liquid with your fingers. Continue until the flour is absorbed, adding 1 tablespoon water, if needed. Knead until soft, velvety, strong, and elastic, 10 to 15 minutes.

By mixer
Stir the yeast and sugar into 3 tablespoons warm water in a mixer bowl; let stand until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes. Mix in the milk and egg with the paddle. Add the flour and salt and mix until the dough comes together, adding 1 tablespoon water if needed. Change to the dough hook and knead at medium speed until sorf, velvety, strong, and elastic, 3 to 4 minutes.

By processor
Stir the yeast and sugar into the water in a small bowl; let sit until foamy, 5 to 10 minutes. Place the flour and salt in a food processor fitted with the dough blade and process with several pulses to sift. With the machine running, pour the dissolved yeast, the milk, which must be cold, an egg through the feed tube and process until the dough comes together in 1 or 2 balls on top of the blade. You may need to add a bit more water. Finish kneading by hand on a lightly floured surface 4 to 5 minutes.


Rising
Place the dough in a lightly oiled bowl, cover with plastic wrap, and let rise until doubled, about 2 hours.

Shaping
Knead the dough briefly on a lightly floured surface. Cut into 6 or 7 pieces (about 4 ounces, 110 grams each). Shape each piece into a ball, flatten each hard with your hand, and roll it with a rolling pi into a 1/4-inch-thick oval.


Topping

1 teaspoon minced garlic
1/4 cup olive oil
12 ounces (340 grams) fresh mozzarella, shredded
2 cups chopped seeded peeled fresh tomatoes or drained canned Italian plum tomatoes
2 to 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmesan
1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves
salt
1 egg, beaten
1 tablespoon water

Warm the garlic in the oil in a small heavy skillet over low heat 4 to 5 minutes. Place 1 1/2 to 2 ounces (1/3 cup) of the mozzarella and about 1/3 cup chopped tomatoes in the center of each dough oval. Sprinkle with a little Parmesan, basil, and salt to taste. Mix the egg and water in a small bowl. Brush the egg wash on the edge of each oval and let rest 10 minutes covered by a towel. Fold each oval in half and press the edges together with your fingertips. Brush the tops with the garlic-scented olive oil. Place the calzoni on an oiled baking sheet if you don't have a baking stone.

Baking
Heat the oven to 450 F. If you are using a baking stone, turn the oven on 30 minutes before baking and sprinkle with cornmeal just before
sliding the calzoni onto it. Bake 20 to 25 minutes. Brush again with the garlic-scented olive oil and serve hot.





All right!! I think I need to learn to make these.......
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