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~Defining Neapolitan, New York & Sicilian-Style Pizza~

IMG_7184I never met a pizza I didn't like, and, pizza is one of my favorite subjects.  That said, a great pizza starts with a great crust, but, finding a pizza dough recipe to suit your requirements is not as easy as the ingredients list indicates:  flour, water, salt, yeast, and sometimes sugar and/or olive oil. Cooks who take pizza making seriously have more than one pizza dough recipe in their repertoire because certain pizzas require a certain type of crust -- there's no getting around it.  Beyond that, within each type, everyone who takes pizza making seriously, professionally or at home, makes their dough a bit differently -- there's no getting around that.  Pizza dough and pizza is personal -- there's no getting around that either.  That said, if you are new to pizza dough, sans a lot of the chemistry and science behind pizza dough, here's a bit of helpful background:  

6a0120a8551282970b01b8d16f592d970cThe three best-known Italian-style pizzas are:  1)  Neapolitan Pizza:  A simple dough containing high-gluten flour, water, salt and yeast that gets a long 2-3 day rise in the refrigerator.  Baked hot and fast, in 1-2 minutes, it's got a thin crispy bottom and a super-airy, chewy center.  2)  New York-Style Pizza: A more complex dough containing all-purpose or bread flour, water, olive oil, salt, sugar and yeast that gets a shorter 8-12 hour rise in the refrigerator.  Baked in a slightly more moderate oven for a longer period of time, 12-15 minutes, while crisp, it's tender, slightly-chewy center makes it pliable enough to fold in half.  While still a thin crust pizza, it is slightly thicker than its Neapolitan cousin.  3) Sicilian-Style Pizza:  Containing the same ingredients as New York-Style pizza, this distinctively thick-crust, square-shaped pizza gets baked with little or no rising time and is the easiest of the three to duplicate in the home kitchen.  It gets patted out into a rectangular pan or sheet tray that has been slathered with olive oil, which when baked in a moderate-for-pizza oven (350-375 degrees) for 12-15 minutes literally fries the bottom of the crust to a crispy state.  With a golden, crisp-fried bottom and a thick, soft, chewy center, this one is, perhaps, my favorite.

Try my favorite Sicilian-Style Semolina Pizza dough recipe:

6a0120a8551282970b026bdec0a27b200cTry my A-1 All-Purpose Bread-Machine Pizza Dough Recipe:

6a0120a8551282970b026bde9755bf200c"We are all in this food world together." ~ Melanie Preschutti

(Recipe, Commentary and Photos courtesy of Melanie's Kitchen/Copyright 2022


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