Monthly Archives - May 2016

Pizza

Top Pizza Crusts

Top Pizza crusts

Wood Burning Brick Oven Goodfella’s Pizza Staten Island

Top Pizza Crusts. “Any pizza is better than no pizza” is a favorite saying of mine, along with beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Food tastes are varied and regional, however, the universal appeal of pizza has brought the many different styles and recipes to all the corners of the earth. Probably the best known and most duplicated is the New York Style with its high gluten flower and slow bake, usually made in brick-lined deck ovens. The signature characters are the chewy crust that passes the “fold test” meaning each slice of the gigantic 18″ plus inch pies can folded in half for eating on the run in a slice of wax paper and the shredded mozzarella on top of a sauce covered dough. It seems pepperoni is hands down the most popular topping for this kind of pizza. Just look at the number of pizza places across the United States and the world calling themselves New York Pizza or selling “Authentic New York Style Pizza” and you get the enormity in popularity of this type of crust.

Neapolitan Pizza

Next in line is the Neapolitan style pizza  which is beginning  to move away from its original  roots and regulations of completely handmade dough,   hand stretched, cooked in a traditional brick oven and under 13 inches with a buffalo cheese. The reason for this break from tradition has become obvious since the United States of America is by far the largest consumer market for pizza with industry sales topping the billion dollar a year mark according to Pizza Today Magazine and American pizza places are all about high production and speed so the Italians let the handmade part slip when it comes to selling Neapolitan to the American market.

top pizza crust

World Champion Pizza maker Scot Cosentino demonstrating pizza making in a backyard oven.

Pizza Crusts

Detroit Style Pizza

Gaining momentum lately is the Detroit style crust featuring a square Sicilian looking pie that is often baked not in a pizza pan but in Industrial automotive parts pans that were common in Detroit. The main feature of this double baked pie is the well oiled or sometimes butter coated crust which makes a very crisp or fried crust surrounding the soft thick inner crust.

Next up is the Chicago deep dish style crust that is baked in a round steel pan with a very thick crust that is usually prepared with the cheese and toppings placed on the dough before a thick layer of tomato sauce is added due to the longer bake times to avoid burning the cheese.

Another Italian style pizza is Focaccia or a flatbread pizza usually in a thin rectangle shape without the sauce layer on the dough, usually just  a light oil with toppings. This is gaining followers in the artisan pizza world.

Lastly, we have the New York Style Brick Oven Pizza made famous by the boys from Goodfella’s Brick Oven Pizza New York and the Pizza School New York and is now featured all over the United States as great pizza for both dine in and delivery. Since the semolina and high-gluten flour dough pizzas are baked in brick ovens at a fast pace, they are perfect for dine in and hold their texture and consistency well for pick up and delivery, an important aspect of many new businesses concentrating on pizza and the fast casual pizza model. Any pizza is better than no pizza so go out and get a slice of your favorite and don’t be afraid to give other styles of  pizza crust a try.

Happy pizza to you!

Marc Cosentino

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Capture

Ash Vacuum to keep that brick oven clean.

 Ash Vacuum.

  I always recommend an Ash Vacuum.  When A customer asks a question about cleaning his brick oven,  I realized that after being in this business for so long there are things I take for granted. Forgive me if I overlook certain things but I always try to make it easier for the next guy. Cleaning a brick oven is a simple chore that requires removing the  ash/ flour/ food particles that usually burn completely and turn to dust due to the high cooking temperatures. Most often pizza men are constantly sweeping most of the ash out of the front of the oven as they cook keeping the flour and food residue down to a minimum. It is most often  pushed into the ash area in the case of a wood-fired brick oven or out swept out the front of the oven in the case of gas fired ovens.

Keeping your oven clean!

loveless ash vacuum

The vacuum you need to Keep your oven clean

Keeping your oven clean is a daily job.  When the ash builds up over a prolonged period of time.  It won’t hurt your brick oven, but it can slow down production.  If  The ash  builds up to the point of blocking the circulation of air and heat around your deck floor or gets into your burner system blocking the flame output. A simple way of handling this is to use an  ash vac such as the Loveless one pictured Below  It is designed for high temperatures  so you won’t have to leave the oven off to cool for days, although after a night off is best.

You should just set up a schedule and also do it as needed if the ash starts to build around the cooking surface.

Clean is always best for great pizza and this is a product that I have used and  I know it works well. They also have  an extension curved wand that makes it easier to get in crevices, so take advantage of an easy to use tool and happy pizza to you. As always make sure the oven is off  and unplugged before cleaning . There are many brands available click this link: to find them on  AMAZON ASH VAC 

Marc Cosentino NY Brick Oven Co. 

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New York Brick Oven Pizza!

New Brick Oven Pizza Places

New Brick Oven Pizza Places

The original Goodfella’s Brick oven photo !

Andrew Scudera's Pizza School New York Creation

The International Pizza Expo Championship Pizza from Andrew Scudera

It seems like there are many  New Brick Oven Pizza Places in Town popping up all over town lately. As a pizza lover this is great news.  Because competition really does create a buyers market and great pizza. The interest of owning a brick oven pizza restaurant has been on a steady rise since the 90’s. That’s when local places like Goodfella’s Pizza on Staten Island New York  started making national news and became a  true NY favorite.

New Brick Oven Pizza Places

Back in those days , it was quite a feat to build a brick oven, gather recipes and open a place in a predominately Italian-American community. Especially  before the internet , great TV food shows and the “foodie”  craze. Now you can even go to a pizza school, watch amazing  food shows and browse the internet for great recipes and pizza ideas. What is driving “The Great Brick Oven Era”? It seems there are several apparent factors that entrepreneurs mention. Some of the reasons are the demand, everybody loves good pizza and thanks to social media word it now spreads like wildfire. The ability to make it fast as in Fast Casual like Blaze, Pieology and  newcomer Pie Craft with their revolving brick ovens. All this  plays a big part especially  allowing time restricted lunch and dinner customer’s to get in and out  fast with a fresh hot pizza made to order. Another contributing factor is the trend toward fresh local ingredients and handmade artisan pizza. Pizza lends itself to a variety of fresh homemade ingredients which give it infinite possibilities and combinations.  Add to that the different types of dough and sauces and it’s a pizza lovers dream come true. How could you ever get bored with all the new players and pizzas?

The time has never been better for us pizza lovers around the country to enjoy the flood of pizza entrepreneurs invading America. If you are on the entrepreneur side of the fence it’s just as good with all the excitement being generated with celebrities like Lebron James attaching themselves to places like Blaze Pizza and generating miles of press for the industry and all involved. I don’t think there has ever been a better time for the pizza industry than now and the future looks bright with lot’s of dough rising.

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