Thursday, September 11, 2014

Fried Peach & Pancetta Pizza – A Savory Twist on a Childhood Sweet

Growing up, I always loved when my family made pizza from scratch, but what I loved even more was what came after the meal. Any extra dough and scraps were rolled out, left to rise, fried, and sprinkled with sugar to create a simple, but delicious donut-like treat.

Here we’re doing a savory twist; using the technique to make a pizza featuring ricotta, pancetta and peaches. Obviously, you can use any and all classic pizza toppings, but this particular combo comes highly recommended.

Besides a fun change of pace, this method is great for making a bunch of crusts ahead of time, and then dressing/baking when needed. Imagine setting up a “make your own pizza” bar, with your guests customizing theirs any way they want. Add a couple cases of beer to the mix, and you’ll be hosting a pizza party of epic proportions. I really hope you give this a try soon. Enjoy!


For One Small Fried Peach & Pancetta Pizza:
(all ingredient amounts are purely guesses)
2 tablespoons ricotta cheese, plus a pinch of salt if needed
fresh thyme leaves
fresh ground black pepper
2 ounces pancetta
5-6 slices fresh peach
freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
extra virgin olive oil, plus regular olive oil for frying

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

The Great Parmesan (Parmigiano-Reggiano) Experiment! – Penny Wise, Parm Foolish

I've wanted to do this little demonstration for a long time now, and it has nothing to do with proving people wrong. Okay, that has a little bit to do with it, but mostly I really want people who could be enjoying “the good stuff,” but don't because they think it’s too expensive, to finally realize that's not the case.

As you'll see, a little bit of real, imported Parmigiano-Reggiano only costs about 20 cents per serving. Basically, for the price of a large gumball, you could be enjoying this world-class cheese. Of course, some people still won't buy Parmigiano-Reggiano, even after seeing this.

For them, cost really has nothing to do with it. This is a convenient excuse they use because they secretly enjoy that stuff in the green canister. Hey, there's nothing wrong with that. To each his own, but at least be honest, and don't claim frugality as your motivation.

By the way, I edited this video while in New York visiting family, and somehow lost a small portion of the audio. So, in the middle of the clip you’ll hear a change in the quality, from the usual mediocre sound, to something much worse. I didn’t want to wait until I got back into the studio to re-record, so I'm posting as is.

Nevertheless, I hope I’ve persuaded some of you to switch over to what you should have been using all along. As a wise man once probably said, “Life’s too short for fake cheese.” Enjoy!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Next Up: Parmigiano-Reggiano Math

My vacation is over, and I'm going to celebrate by proving many of you wrong. I'd like to apologize to companies that make fake Parmesan in advance. Stay tuned!