Expats.cz Team members share the best recipes for you to try over the weekend.
Why I like this recipe?
This style of pizza originated in Palermo Sicily and separates itself from the traditional style Neapolitan pizza with its shape being square and much thicker dough. It is the ‘hearty´ style of pizza if there were one. It is typical to include anchovies as one of the toppings, but I actually steer clear from that part as it takes some serious tongue scrubbing to get that taste out of your mouth.
When I first started living in Prague, it was tough to find western or American style food (authentically speaking – whatever that means with American cuisine). One of my secret indulgences at that time was to go about once a month with my two good friends to Pizza Hut (when it still existed here on Celetna Street) for a taste of home with their deep-dish pizza.
After it closed, I was of course saddened for a short time and lost a bit of sleep over it, but then decided to move on with my life and fill that void of thick buttery flavored pizza dough with some good old fashioned home-made pizza dough. I opted for the thick crust because that is actually one of my more favor parts of the pizza. After a few trial runs, I hit the jackpot and the pizza actually turned out half decent.
And today, I have all but perfected the dough recipe and have kept the tradition alive with a monthly Sunday afternoon home-made Sicilian pizza.
1.5 hour + 1 hour for the dough to rise.
20 minutes or until the crust is golden brown.
There are more ingredients than you would think that go into this dish, but most are inexpensive to buy.
- 1 cup warm water hotter than room temperature
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 18g of yeast (the fresh Drozdi is best – normally half of the pack is perfect)
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/4 cup milk
- 4 cups flour
- 190g can tomato sauce
- 250g can of chopped tomatoes
- 1 teaspoon dry oregano
- 1 teaspoon marjoram
- 1 teaspoon dry basil
- 1 teaspoon garlic salt
- ½ teaspoon of black pepper
- ¼ teaspoon of salt
- 300g mozzarella cheese
- 400g buffalo mozzarella cheese
- 50g parmesan cheese
- Whatever other toppings you prefer
- Personally, I add salami, green peppers, onions, jalapenos for spice
Combine the water, milk, salt, sugar and yeast and mix well until all yeast is broken down. Make sure you let this warm concoction sit for about 10 minutes.
Place the flour in a large bowl (a big salad bowl usually works well) and make a hollow space in the center of the flour to pour the yeast mixture into. After this is done, mix the liquid and flour together until all liquid is absorbed in the flour.
Now comes the fun part – make sure you have a clean countertop to work on to knead the dough.
Toss about 2 tablespoons of flour on the countertop and the mixed dough and lay it on top of the floured countertop. At this time you will knead the dough for about 10 minutes or until it is a smooth ball of dough.
Tip: to knead dough, take the ball of dough and push it with the palm of your right hand while holding the dough still with your left hand, then fold it back onto itself and repeat.
After you knead the dough, place the dough back in the bowl and lightly drizzle about a teaspoon of olive oil on the top of the dough. Cover the bowl with a clean kitchen towel and set in a warm place for 1 hour.
Combine the oregano, basil, marjoram, garlic salt, black pepper, salt and set aside. Pour the can of chopped tomatoes in a colander to get rid of extra liquid. Add to dry herbs and spices along with can of tomato sauce and let this mixture sit for about an hour.
Chop your toppings into the size of your choice.
Grate the cheese and mix all three cheeses in a bowl and set aside.
Once the dough has risen about an hour or more, press the dough with your fingers so the air in the dough escapes. Place the dough back on a floured countertop and roll out with a rolling pin.
After the dough is rolled out, place on an oven pan. If some of the dough hangs over the sides of the pan, roll it back into itself on the sides to make even thicker dough. If you don´t want extremely thick dough you can cut the excess with a knife.
Tip: The trick of golden brown crust is to paint some melted butter on the edges of the pizza before placing it in the oven.
Place the pizza sauce mix on the dough in the pan and spread evenly.
Toss your toppings (according to your taste) evenly on top of the sauce.
Now toss all of that amazing cheese mixture on the pizza evenly. It is alright if you get a little on the crust.
If you are using any meat for toppings, I recommend placing it over the cheese as it will cook more thoroughly.
Place in and oven at 200C for up to 15-20 minutes but keep watch so the cheese doesn´t burn.
Now pull that beautiful creation out of the oven, cut it up and get prepared for a Sicilian addiction that will be hard to kick. I am sure you too will start to make this monthly tradition.