Pizza Margherita!

Enjoy the Taste of Italy with Pizza Margherita!
Julia Roberts enjoyed an original Pizza Margherita in Eat, Pray, Love...(see my post)
Naples residents (where the pizza was created) say there are only two real pizzas: the Marinara pizza and the Margherita pizza.
read on for the recipe...
San Marzano tomatoes, are a variety of plum tomatoes.  San Marzano region near Naples is considered one of the best tomato-growing regions in the world.  There are many places to purchase imported San Marzanos but I order cans from Claro's in L.A. because they provide really fast shipping service.

Italy Mag's recipe:
Pizza Margherita is to many the true Italian flag. According to popular tradition, in 1889, 28 years after the unification of Italy, during a visit to Naples of Queen Margherita of Savoy, wife of King Umberto I, chef Raffaele Esposito of Pizzeria Brandi and his wife created  a pizza resembling the colors of the Italian flag, red (tomato), white (mozzarella) and green (basil). They named it after the Queen - Pizza Margherita. 
The top quality of the ingredients and the traditional preparation and cooking method are at the basis of a true Pizza Napoletana STG.  Specialit√† Tradizionali Garantite - Traditional Guaranteed Specialty
You need to have a 3 mm thick disk of dough with a 1-2 cm high crust. No other working tools other than the hands of the pizzaiolo are allowed,  no rolling pin or mechanical press machine, and it needs to be cooked in a wood- brick oven at 485 °C for about 90 seconds.
Making the dough:
Mix flour, water, salt and yeast. Pour a liter of water into a dough making machine, dissolve 50-55 g of salt, add 10% of the total amount of flour you are planning to use, then dissolve 3g of yeast, and start mixing gradually adding the remaining 1.8 Kg  flour until the dough reaches the desired texture and consistency, defined as "Il Punto di Pasta", smooth to the touch and very extensible .
Let the the dough rest on a marble slab or a wooden surface for 2 hours covered with a damp cloth and then divide into individual ball-shaped portions of 180 grams each.
Set aside in a container to rise for a second time for 4-6 hours at room temperature.
Use your hands and with a round motion roll out the dough on a marble slab covered with flour until it becomes 3 mm thick with a 1-2 cm edge.
Take about 60g to 70g of chopped tomatoes and using a wooden spoon place in the center of the disk of dough.  With a spiraling motion, spread the tomato over the surface.  Then add a pinch of salt on the tomatoes, 80 - 100 g of DOP buffalo mozzarella, cut into strips and some basil leaves. Again with a spiraling motion starting from the centre, add 4 to 5 grams of extra virgin olive oil.
Cook  in a wood- brick oven at a temperature between 450C° to 480C°, rotating the position of the pizza frequently to make sure the heat is spread evenly.
Eating method:
According to Da Michele's Antica Pizzeria of Naples (est. 1870):
  • Never use a knife to cut the pizza
  • Always use your hands to tear a piece of the pizza, then fold or roll the piece Enjoy!                                                                Grazie, Italy Mag
Original Margherita Pizzeria's:  Pizzeria Brandi  


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