December 1, 2014 |

2015 Pizza Today Menu Guide — Summer

By Pizza Today

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The Local Pro


James Orintas,
Theo’s Pizza, New Orleans, LA

1 pizza dough
2 tablespoons olive oil
10 tomato slices
2 ounces zucchini
3 ounces feta cheese
8 ounces mozzarella cheese
Drizzle of EVOO
Pinch of black pepper
1 ounce fresh basil

Stretch pizza dough out to the desired size and shape. Brush with olive oil. Add tomato slices, zucchini, feta and mozzarella. Drizzle with olive oil and add a pinch of black pepper and the fresh basil. Bake at 500 F until golden brown and ready to serve.


Rigatoni with Eggplant


2½ cups prepared marinara sauce
2 small eggplants, washed and trimmed
½ cup olive oil
1½ pounds rigatoni
1¼ cups crumbled feta cheese

Place marinara over low heat and maintain at a simmer.

Peel eggplant and cut into cubes. Toss with olive oil.

Spread eggplant evenly on a lightly oiled sheet pan or baking sheet. Bake eggplant in a preheated 425 F oven for about 10 minutes, or until it just begins to soften, stirring once or twice. Remove from oven and set aside.

Cook pasta in boiling, salted water until al dente. Drain.

For individual portions, divide pasta among six heated serving bowls. Top each portion with some of the eggplant, sauce and feta cheese.


Heirloom Tomato & Pancetta with Papardelle


Nick Strawhecker
Dante Ristorante Pizzeria, Omaha, NE

For the tomato sauce:
5 pounds heirloom tomatoes, mixed varieties
1 onion
10 garlic cloves
Olive oil
Salt and pepper, to taste

Core the tomatoes and rough chop. Peel and slice onion.

Heat olive oil in a large saucepan and sweat the onion (no color). Add the garlic and sauté until fragrant. Add the tomato and stew on a slow heat until falling apart and delicious (about 1½ hours).

For the pasta:
1 pound 00 Flour
1 egg yolk
1 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon olive oil

In a large mixing bowl, add the flour.  Create a mountain with the flour and then push down in the middle to form a “crater” with enough room for the yolk.

Add the yolk, salt and olive oil to the crater.

Whisk the yolk and the flour
together and gradually combine the two until it has somewhat come together.  Remove from the bowl and knead on a clean surface for 10 minutes.

Wrap with plastic or a clean towel and let rest for 1 hour in the cooler. After an hour pull from cooler and cut into fourths.

Set up manual (or electric pasta machine if you are lucky) and roll out into sheets. Cut the pasta into 1-inch wide by 6 to 7 inches long, dust the pasta and stack on each other.  Keep a slightly damp towel on the pasta so it doesn’t dry out.

The pasta needs to be used the same day or frozen.  It will turn green over night.

For the finished sauce:
1 pound pancetta, cut into batonettes
4 tablespoons shallots, minced
4 cloves garlic, sliced
1 tablespoon chili
Olive oil
Tomato sauce  (See recipe above)
1 cup basil
salt and pepper, to taste
1½ cups white wine

Render pancetta. Remove 20 percent of the fat. Add shallot, garlic and chili. Sauté quickly being careful not to burn the garlic.  Deglaze with white wine and reduce by half.

Add tomato sauce.  Bring to boil, then turn down to simmer.

Pasta & Sauce
Cook pasta in heavily salted boiling water for 1 to 2 minutes.  Drain pasta, reserving 3 cups of water.

Add to pasta sauce, add basil and a pinch of olive oil. Stew pasta on stove for 2 to 3 minutes, constantly stirring.  If it starts to dry out a little, add water.

“This is a fantastic dish. It’s labor intensive, but there’s no substitute for the scratch preparation. If you are an artisan shop that really wants to go the extra mile for your customers, this is for you. Chef Nick says that when testing this recipe you may need to make adjustments to the sauce-to-pasta ratio.” — Jeremy White, PT Editor-in-Chief



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