21 August 2009

Pizza Cheese Redux

I've been making more pizzas from scratch lately and just thought I should add an update about this original pizza post. In short, we did it all wrong (with respect to cheese, anyhow).

Here are some things to watch out for if you're making your own pizza:
*) Don't put on as much cheese as we did. If you look at the image from the original post there's cheese everywhere. It ends up doing a couple of things that are bad: it really dominates the taste of the pizza and causes your crust to waterlog. You don't want that. If you are more parsimonious with your fromage - you'll get a more refined, tasteful pizza and your cheese will last longer. It seems best to cut your cheese into small cubes and place them around the pie. It really melts down nicely.

*) Watch out for cheeses in water. In the post both mozzarellas were shipped in water. This isn't a bad thing, but you need to be sure to dry off the cheese well before you place it on your pizza. I like to wrap the cheese in a towel and let it sop up some of the moisture before preparing it for the pizza. Again - the trouble here is that you don't want the crust to get waterlogged. That being said I think the flavor of "fresh" mozzarella is a little bit better (at least the Trader Joe's version).

*) In lieu of either cow or buffalo, consider a Burrata. Again - be sure to dry it off as much as you can, but the cream on the inside really makes for an interesting flavor on a neapolitan pizza.

Something I'd really like to attempt soon is preparing my own mozarella. As I recall, Charlie White used to make a damn good mozarella from scratch...