Serious Eats Food Lab Sicilian Pizza

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I pinned this recipe a while back and after a visit to Emmy2 I couldn't wait to try it. Their pizza is Detroit-style which means sauce on top of the cheese with a much better version of the ole Pizza Hut crust we all grew up on. After a little bit of research I'm not quite sure what the main difference is between Sicilian and Detroit style–they both seem to be rectangular, have thicker crust, and have the cheese underneath the sauce. If anyone knows please comment below!! Below are my starting ingredients including a little scale I picked up from Home Goods a few years ago on the cheap. I'm a big fan of weighing items due to precision, ease-ability (mmhmm that's a word) of halving, and many baking recipes use weight in the instructions.

I chose the food processor method. I've never made pizza dough in it before although I often make pasta dough this way because it turns out much better than the Kitchen Aid. This is now another reason that the food processor is the best tool in the kitchen (next to a garlic press of course)! After putting the dough on the tray to rest and covering it in plastic wrap I used my work bowls in my Cuisinart to chop my cheese and slice my pepperoni. I have the 16cup food processor which comes with 2 additional work bowls, it is pretty great because it means I don't have to wash the main work bowl if I want to chop/cut other items. I grated my cheese then sliced my pepperoni on the 1 setting to get it super thin. After that I chopped the garlic for the sauce.

If you use a lot of fresh garlic and don't have a peeler, check them out, they make the process go a lot faster and are cheap too.

Kenji suggests using a pastry blender to press the tomatoes, this worked really well and will definitely be my strategy going forward. It is much less messy for my hands and clothing than squeezing them by hand. When I spread the dough after a 2 hour rise in a regular temp kitchen it spread much slower and easier than any pizza dough I've made before. Once I pulled it to the corners it stayed! I put the oven on 550ºF while the dough did its final 30 minutes proof. After layering my ingredients I stuck it in the oven for about 10 minutes. Right as I took it out the oven started flashing off and freaking out so I tried to turn it off and crossed my fingers. Luckily the crust had that golden brown glow underneath and didn't need any more cooking AND the oven recovered after a few minutes. My pepperonis curled–official Silician right here whoohoo!

Using 3 spatulas my husband and I transferred the pizza to two flat cutting boards to slice (my pans are nonstick). It was the perfect temperature to eat and tasted delicious. My husband says this is the best home cooked pizza and crust he's ever had. He is always giving me trouble for buying expensive ingredients but said for this pizza I'm allowed to buy whatever I want!

It didn't quite taste the same as Emmy2 , the dough didn't achieve the crispy bubbles theirs has, but did have the crispy edges. The spicy sauce went well with the slightly spicy pepperoni and went quite well with 19Crimes red wine. We will be eating the leftovers for a few days which no one is unhappy about and this will definitely be making a repeat appearance in the Walters home.

I found myself with extra ingredients so I've altered the recipe to reflect more appropriate amounts.

Sicilian Pizza

Adapted from Serious Eats Sicilian Pizza.   Total Recipe time including prep and resting: about 3.5hours.   There are three different options to make the dough, Kenji suggests the food processor but if you don't have one you could use one of the other methods.

For the Dough

  • 17.5 ounces bread flour ((500g; about 3 1/2 cups))
  • 1/2 ounce salt ((14g; about 1 tablespoon))
  • 1/4 ounce instant or rapid-rise yeast ((6g; about 1 1/2 teaspoons))
  • 0.35 ounce extra-virgin olive oil ((20g; 2 tablespoons), plus 1/4 cup olive oil (60ml; 40g) for the pan)
  • 11.5 ounces room-temperature water ((325g; about 1 cup plus 7 tablespoons))

For the Sauce:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 9 medium cloves garlic, roughly chopped
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • 1.5 teaspoons dried red pepper flakes, or more to taste
  • 1 (28-ounce) can whole peeled tomatoes
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • Kosher salt

To Assemble and Bake:

  • 0.5 pound sliced deli-style mozzarella cheese
  • 4 ounces natural-casing pepperoni, cut into 1/8-inch slices
  • 4 ounces ground Pecorino Romano cheese

Making the Dough: Food Processor

  1. Food Processor (recommended): Combine flour, salt, yeast, 0.35 ounce olive oil, and water in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the blade or dough blade attachment. Process until a dough that rides around the blade forms, then continue processing for 30 seconds. 

Making the Dough: Stand Mixer

  1. Combine flour, salt, yeast, and 0.35 ounce olive oil in the bowl of a stand mixer (see below for mixer-free version). Whisk to combine. Fit mixer with dough hook attachment. Add water to mixer and mix on medium speed until dough comes together and no dry flour remains. Increase speed to medium-high and mix until dough is stretchy and smooth, about 6 minutes. The dough should stick to the bottom of bowl, but pull away from the sides. 

Making the Dough: No-Knead Method

  1. Combine flour, salt, and yeast in a large bowl. Whisk to combine. Add 0.35 ounce olive oil and water and stir by hand until dough comes together and no dry flour remains. Cover bowl tightly with plastic wrap and let rest at room temperature for 12 to 24 hours. 

Next steps for dough:

  1. Pour remaining 1/4 cup olive oil into a 13- by 18-inch rimmed baking sheet and spread over entire inner surface with your hands. Transfer dough to baking sheet and turn in oil until thoroughly coated. Spread gently with your hands. (It will not stretch to fill the pan; this is fine.) Cover baking sheet with plastic wrap and allow to rise at room temperature until dough has slackened and started to spread out toward the edges of the pan, 2 to 3 hours. Carefully remove plastic wrap from pizza dough. Using oiled hands, and working as gently as possible to maintain air bubbles, push and stretch dough into the corners of the pan by pressing out from the center, lifting each corner, and stretching it beyond the edge of the pan. It should pull back until pan is just filled with dough. Set aside for 20 to 30 minutes while you make the sauce.

Making the Sauce:

  1. Heat olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add garlic, oregano, and red pepper flakes and cook, stirring, until softened and aromatic, about 1 minute. Add tomatoes. Using a pastry cutter or a potato masher, break up tomatoes into fine chunks. Stir in sugar. Bring to a bare simmer and allow to cook for about 15 minutes to let flavors meld. Season to taste with salt. Set aside and allow to cool slightly.

To Assemble and Bake:

  1. Thirty minutes before baking, adjust oven rack to lower position and preheat oven to 550°F.
  2. Spread slices of mozzarella cheese evenly over surface of pizza. Spoon sauce on top of cheese and spread with the back of a spoon. (You will not need all the sauce; use as much as you like, but be sparing.) Spread pepperoni slices evenly over surface. Sprinkle with half of Romano cheese. Transfer to oven and bake until pepperoni is crisp and curled and bottom of pizza is golden brown when you peek by lifting the corner with a thin spatula, about 10 minutes. With some ovens, you may need to loosely tent the top of the pizza with aluminum foil and continue baking until the bottom is golden and crisp.
  3. Remove pizza from oven. Sprinkle with remaining half of Romano cheese, use a pizza wheel to cut it into slices, and serve immediately.

I'd like to try this at some point with with mozzarella, ricotta, pecorino and caramelized onion (the Marn Blanc at Emmy Squared).