Pizza Today - April 2021 - 43

after years of making pizza in New York,
and making New York-style pizza around
the world.
First things first, like the skyscrapers and
personalities of the city, it is big. NY-style
pizza tends to be 16 to 20 inches with the
classic NY slice being cut from an 18-inch
pie. Anything less just won't look right
on a paper plate. And speaking of paper
plates, NY pizza is for people on the go,
that means eating it quick, with your hands,
almost always standing up.
It's thin, but not paper thin like the
cracker style crust found across the Hudson
in New Jersey. And it's crisp, but with some
pliability - it shouldn't shatter when you
take a bite. The sauce should be simple, fresh
and slightly sweet with a balance of acidity,
my choice for achieving this is the California tomato.
The mozzarella should be stringy, but not
too wet, and it should form a cohesive unit
with the sauce. This amalgamation of sauce
and cheese adheres to the dough, and it
doesn't slip off when it's lifted to the mouth
like its Neapolitan cousin. In practice this
means a " low moisture " mozzarella, essentially a more aged version of fresh mozzarella (sometimes it's whole milk, sometimes
part skim, or sometimes a blend). Fresh
mozzarella is totally acceptable too, just less
prevalent than low moisture.
Toppings should be judiciously applied
and not overloaded like they do in certain
windy cities. In fact, one could say that the
most true example of the New York pizza is
the humble " plain slice " : tomato, mozzarella,
oregano, and maybe a little pecorino or
Parmesan.
So let's summarize; a NY-style pizza is
big, it's thin but not paper thin, crispy but
still flexible enough to fold without cracking, and the toppings should be a cohesive
amalgamation and applied with restraint
and simplicity. It shouldn't be too fancy,
but that doesn't mean you can't use quality
ingredients. It should always be cooked
directly on the stones of the oven floor, be
that gas, wood, electric or coal.
So now that we have defined what
New York Pizza is, how do we make
it? Well, I'm going to be completely honest
... I have no idea how to make a proper
NY-style pizza. I have never trained or
worked at a proper old school New York
style pizzeria. I came up cooking in woodfired ovens, I was cooking small, new-school

042_PIZ_0421_IKNYstyle.indd 43

Neapolitan-ish pizzas fast and hot and
topped with globs of fresh mozzarella,
definitely the same galaxy but still worlds
apart. About five years ago I started playing
with NY-style pizza. I thought I would
just come in with what I knew, crank the
oven all the way up and start kicking butt.
That is not what happened. I learned very
quickly that NY-style pizza is actually one
of the most difficult styles to master. I knew
what I wanted the pizza to be like, but I
wasn't sure how to get there. I went into
the laboratory, aka my kitchen in Brooklyn,
and I started playing around with different
flours, temperatures, cheese blends and so
on. Eventually I got something I liked, and
since then I have helped open NY-style
pizzerias as a consultant in Manhattan,
Brooklyn, Bangkok, Miami and Bali, with
more in the works. Every one of these takes
on NY-style pizza has been a different
approach, from all naturally leavened, a
hybrid of sourdough and commercial yeast,
and even all commercial yeast. The reception
has been great and these are some of my
favorite pizzas to eat anywhere.
In the last few years a growing number
of pizza consulting inquiries want to do
NY-style pizza. And in the last year, the
pandemic has proven this style to be built
for durability. It holds up well for takeout,
delivery, people on a budget, as well as
people looking to splurge on a meal they
wouldn't normally make at home.
So let me share with you a recipe that you
can try if you are interested in bringing New
York-style pizza to your pizzeria. The ingredients are important for this pizza. I prefer a
high-protein American bread flour. You can
add in small amounts of semolina (durum
wheat) at 5 to 10 percent if you want to up
the crisp levels on a flour with less protein.
For the water, it's true that New York has
great tap water, but so does Palm Springs,
California! If you have great tap water in
your town use that, otherwise a well filtered
or spring water from a delivery service
should do just fine. New York City tap
water is low in total dissolved solids with
very little chlorine, and just the right minerality, but it's not magic, so don't go crazy
thinking about it. If it tastes good as drinking water it will taste good in the pizza.
For olive oil, I highly recommended a
California extra virgin olive oil. It's fresh
and clean and really works well with this
style of pizza. Also, I like sea salt for my
pizza and I think it makes a huge difference,

but kosher salt will also work. If you only
have iodized table salt you need to get rid of
it and upgrade your salt game.
The recipe will call for a starter. If
you don't have a sourdough starter
you can use a commercial yeast preferment (aka poolish, biga or sponge).
Some people don't like sourdough in NYstyle pizza. That's their opinion, but mine is
that it is delicious. Do whatever you want to
do and never listen to the haters. These are
all just guidelines - follow your dreams.
When topping the pizza you should
always start by making a classic plain pie.
I recommend a tomato sauce of uncooked
California tomatoes, seasoned simply with
sea salt and extra virgin olive oil. For mozzarella a blend of low moisture whole milk
and part skim mozzarella is great, but if you
want to use fresh mozzarella, that can work
too. I'm a big fan of the mozzarella down
first method, splotching the tomato on top
with a little space between, and finally some
oregano (wild Sicilian is always my first
choice) and a little hard cheese (a pecorino
or grana works great). The key is a balance
between the toppings so that they all come
together on the pie in a cohesive way, clinging onto rather than easily slipping off of
the dough.
And for my final thoughts before you try
the recipe is that it is my interpretation of
NY style, it's not authentic or the ultimate
or anything like that, it comes from loving
this style of pizza and trying to make it
through my lens as a pizza maker. I hope
you enjoy it and add this style to your repertoire. Now hope on over to PizzaToday.com
to check it out! ■
ANTHONY FALCO is an international
pizza consultant.

S e e Fa l c o's
NY Style Dough
Recipe at
P i z z aTo d a y . c o m

A P R I L 2 0 2 1 / P I Z Z AT O D AY. C O M / 4 3

3/9/21 10:14 AM


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Pizza Today - April 2021

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pizza Today - April 2021

Pizza Today April 2021
Commentary
Digital
Conversation
Mike's Monthly Tip
Man on the Street
Building Blocks
Tony's Trending Recipe
Knead to Know
Destinations
Ghost Kitchens
New Item Roll Out
Private Labeling
Outdoor Dining Setup
The New York Style
Going Pesto
Latest menu Trends
Product Showcase
Pizza Today Yellow Pages
The Marketplace
Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - April 2021 - CT1
Pizza Today - April 2021 - CT2
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Pizza Today April 2021
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Cover2
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Commentary
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 4
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 5
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 6
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 7
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Digital
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 9
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Conversation
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 11
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Mike's Monthly Tip
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 13
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Man on the Street
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 15
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Building Blocks
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 17
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Tony's Trending Recipe
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 19
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Knead to Know
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 21
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 22
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 23
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Destinations
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 25
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Ghost Kitchens
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 27
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 28
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 29
Pizza Today - April 2021 - New Item Roll Out
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 31
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 32
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 35
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Private Labeling
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PEC1
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE2
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE3
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE4
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE5
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE6
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE7
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE8
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE9
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE10
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE11
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE12
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE13
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE14
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE15
Pizza Today - April 2021 - PE16
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 35
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Outdoor Dining Setup
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 37
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 38
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 39
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 40
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 41
Pizza Today - April 2021 - The New York Style
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 43
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Going Pesto
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 45
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Latest menu Trends
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 47
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 48
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 49
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Product Showcase
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 51
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Pizza Today Yellow Pages
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 53
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 54
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 55
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 56
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 57
Pizza Today - April 2021 - The Marketplace
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 59
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 60
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 61
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 62
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 63
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 64
Pizza Today - April 2021 - 65
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Cover3
Pizza Today - April 2021 - Cover4
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