Monday, December 12, 2011

Project Food Challenge: New York Style Pizza

I know that there's nothing quite like a pizza in New York, but this hot and bubbly version of a New York style pizza that is topped with homemade sauce, cheese, and toppings of your choice (I'm a fan of just pepperoni) is sure to satisfy your taste buds.  This pizza takes quite a bit more effort than my quick and easy pizza night recipe, but the extra effort is well worth it!

On a side note, because this pizza is a real challenge and takes a bit more effort than regular pizza like I said above, I'm starting a new category of posts called Project Food Challenge where we showcase nothing less than the most challenging recipes to master. This New York Style Pizza would fit right in. So in other words if you're up to the challenge of making a difficult recipe, look for this category of posts...more coming soon.

**Note: this recipe makes 2 pizzas**

I will begin by explaining how to make a sourdough starter.  A sourdough starter needs to be prepared about 3 days before you plan to make your dough, which should be made at least 24 hours before you plan to make your pizza.

Ingredients for sourdough starter:

  • 1 package (2 1/4 teaspoons) yeast
  • 2 cups water (I used bottled); make sure that the water is at least room temperature 
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
Steps to make sourdough starter:

Mix the flour and the yeast in a large glass bowl.

Slowly add the water, and mix well.

When all of the ingredients are well combined, cover the bowl with a kitchen towel.

Place the bowl in a warm, dry location, and be sure to check on it occasionally (I checked about 3-4 times a day.)

In 3-4 days the sourdough starter will be ready to use.


Ingredients for dough:
  • 4 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups water (I used bottled water)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 teaspoons yeast
  • sourdough starter
Steps for the dough:

***Note: the dough needs to rest in the fridge for at least 24 hours before you plan on making pizza.***

In a stand mixer, combine 3 3/4 cup all-purpose flour, salt, and yeast.

Slowly add the sourdough starter, and the water.

Mix for 1-2 minutes with the paddle attachment.

The mixture should be thinner than dough, and it should be bubbly.

Cover the bowl with a towel and allow to rest for 20 minutes.

After the rest period attach the dough hook to the mixer, and add the remainder of the flour: 1 cup of all-purpose flour.

Mix on low for 8 minutes.

Increase speed a little bit, and mix for 1-2 minutes.

This mixture should still not be thick enough to form a "ball"; it should still be quite wet.  If it looks like that, trust me, you're on the right path.

Cover the bowl, and let rest for 20 minutes.

This is what the dough should look like after the rest period:

Turn out the sticky dough onto a floured surface, and sprinkle the top of the dough with flour.

Split the dough into two equal pieces, and place into two covered containers, and place in the refrigerator for at least 24 hours (the dough can be left in the fridge for up to 4 days.)

This is how the dough should look after it is covered with flour:

You aren't going to want to go to all this effort to top your pizza with store-bought sauce.  Make some delicious, you'll-never-go-back-to-jarred-again homemade sauce.  

Sauce ingredients:

  • 1 small onion, minced or pureed (can use 1 tablespoon onion powder if you don't have an onion)
  • 1 teaspoon of minced garlic
  • 1 14 ounce can of diced tomatoes 
  • 1 6 ounce can of tomato paste
  • 1 tablespoons sugar
  • 3/4 teaspoon dried basil leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seeds
  • 1/2 tablespoon salt
  • 1/2 tablespoon dried parsley

  • Steps to makes sauce:

    Mix all of the ingredients together in a medium sized pot.

    Simmer over medium low heat for 2 hours.

    This sauce can be stored in the fridge for 2 weeks, or it can be frozen until needed.

    When you are ready to make your pizza, turn out your dough onto a pizza peel or a flat cookie sheet (a cookie sheet that doesn't have a lip) covered with cornmeal , and allow the dough to warm up a bit; let it sit for about 10 minutes.
    Pre-heat your oven to 500 degrees F.

    If you are going to use a pizza stone, be sure to pre-heat your pizza stone as well.
    If you don't have a pizza stone, that's ok, your pizza will still turn out tasty!  Just bake it on the cookie sheet (no lip.)  Be sure to spray the cookie sheet so that your pizza doesn't stick.
    When it is all warmed up, pat out the dough into a circle.

    The dough should not be elastic (meaning that it shouldn't spring back when you pat it out, if it does that, that adding less flour next time) and very soft.

    Top the dough with your pizza sauce, cheese (I suggest sargento mozzarella and provolone blend), and toppings of choice.  I like to place a few pepperonis right on top of the sauce, and under the cheese.

    Bake in your pre-heated oven for 15-20 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.

    Pizza is such a great treat when having guests over to watch the game, or to unwind on Friday night, or as a fun lunch over the weekend.

         ~ Chef Megs


    Mary said...

    I would love to have a slice of this. I am new to your blog, and after reading this post decided to browse through some of your earlier entries. I'm so glad I did that. I really like the food and recipes that you share with your readers and I'll definitely be back. I hope you have a great day. Blessings...Mary

    Foodies For Life said...

    Thank you so much Mary for your kind words! I'm glad that you enjoy our blog. I checked out your blog as well, and it is amazing!

    Jenn @ Baking Jenn's Blog said...

    wait, what? sourdough pizza crust?! That sounds like pure heaven. I am saving this recipe. Thanks so much for sharing.

    Kels @ K and K Test Kitchen said...

    This pizza looks perfect, and definitely worth the effort! Thanks for sharing. Looking forward to more Project Food Challenges.

    Peggy said...

    I think you conquered NY Style Pizza gracefully! I could definitely use a slice of this right about now =)

    Anonymous said...

    Good job. I don't see myself having the patience to go through with a challenge like this any time soon :(

    Foodies For Life said...

    Coming from someone who lives in NY, that's quite a compliment! This pizza did take quite a bit of time to make, but it sure was yummy. Thanks for stopping by!

    Dima's Kitchen said...

    I love sourdough pizza and you have done a fabulous job here :) the looks of it is mouthwatering, I think it is nothing short from those served in NY, thanks for the recipe :)

    Chef Megs said...

    Thank you Dima, that is quite a compliment! I put a lot of effort into this pizza, and I was thrilled with the outcome.

    I checked out your blog, and its beautiful!

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