Pizza Today - August 2017 - 20

with TONY GEMIGNANI

respecting the craft

REDUCE TO SEDUCE
A reduction can surprise guests by
amplifying your pizza's flavor profile

L

ast month I talked about
liquors, aperitifs and Amaros. I
mentioned that this month I'd
add digestives to the mix and
then tell you how you can use all of these in
a surprising way to improve your pizza. So
let's pick up where we left off, shall we?
A digestive, or "digestivo" in Italian, is
an alcoholic beverage that is served to aid
in digestion. Drambui, Limoncello, Strega,
and Fernet Branca are a few.
As luck would have it, I recently visited
the Fernet Branca plant and museum in
Milan, Italy. Fernet Branca is made from
spices and herbs that are aged in oak barrels. It's all natural and made from scratch. I
started drinking Fernet when I was just
under 21 years old (don't tell anyone) in
North Beach (Little Italy), San Francisco. North Beach is where several of my

restaurants are now and it happens to be
the neighborhood that consumes more
Fernet Branca than any place in the U.S.
You even see it on tap. Currently one of the
most popular drinks in Argentina is Fernet
Branca and Coca-Cola.
Anyway, all of these spirits that I mention above are not just for drinking. They
can be used to make excellent reductions
that can be drizzled over the top of some
amazing pizzas!
Recently at the World Pizza Championships in Italy I was asked to create a pizza
for 65 people. I wasn't competing ... I was
demonstrating with five of the best pizza
makers in the world. I was asked just a few
days before to cook, so I had to create a
pizza that was monumental and unforgettable. I went with an eight-grain dough made
with an apricot starter, mozzarella, smoked

pancetta, goat cheese blended with
apricot, radicchio and frisée pickled in
vinegar. The kicker? I used a Disaronno
reduction served with a Disaronno Sour
cocktail. Each person was given a jar and
they shook their cocktails tableside. It
was the perfect pairing, especially because
Disaronno is made from the inside pits of
apricots and I used apricots on the pizza
and in the dough with the starter. I grew
up farming apricots until I was 18 years
old, so this pizza went right down my alley. The flavors were out of this world and
the crowd loved it.
So, how do you make a reduction with
one of these drinks?
Turn a burner on high and pour your
spirit into a small pot. It will start to boil
and burn off the alcohol, so be careful.
You should do this without the top on
of the pot. As the spirit starts to boil you
want to continuously stir it using a whisk.
As it cooks down and gets lower and
lower, the sugars will come out and create
a reduction that is similar to a syrup. You
don't want to over-cook this because
it will burn. As it thickens you should
be testing it quickly - but don't burn
yourself when taste testing. You can grab
it with a spoon and see if it slides on the
backside of the spoon slowly (like a syrup
does). This consistency can be different
with certain spirits. Fine baking sugar
can be added if you think it needs more
sweetness -- just make sure it melts.
Campari would be bitter and semi-sweet;
Strega has a nice, cool, sweet flavor to it;
Fernet Branca has a sweet mint flavor.
Disaronno has a very sweet caramel/
Amaretto flavor to it. All of the spirits
have their own flavor profile and all of
them can be delicious.
Over the years I've experimented with
spirits reduced and drizzled over salads,
pizzas and entrees. They can also be
infused in desserts, like tiramisu and cannoli. The next time you grab a bottle, try
reducing it for an amazing ingredient! ■

RESPECTING THE CRAFT features World Pizza Champion Tony Gemignani, owner of Tony's Pizza Napoletana in San Francisco and Pizza Rock in Sacramento. Tony compiles the column with the help of his trusty assistants, Laura Meyer and Thiago Vasconcelos. If you have questions on any kitchen topic ranging from prep to finish, Tony's your guy. Send questions
via Twitter @PizzaToday, Facebook (search: Pizza Today) or e-mail jwhite@pizzatoday.com and we'll pass the best ones on to Tony.

2 0 / P I Z Z AT O D AY. C O M / A U G U S T 2 0 1 7

By JOSH KEOWN


http://www.PIZZATODAY.COM

Pizza Today - August 2017

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Pizza Today - August 2017

Pizza Today - August 2017
Commentary
Contents
Contributors
Expo Spotlight
Interact
Conversation
Man on the Street
Respecting the Craft
On Tap
Destinations
Knead to Know
Soda Machines
Grilled Pizzas
Entrée Salads
Balsamic Vinegar
Promoting Victories
Road to Pizza & Pasta Northeast: It’s not too late to enter competitions
2017 Independent Pizzeria of the Year: Cane Rosso, Dallas, TX
Product Showcase
Pizza Today Yellow Pages
The Marketplace
Reader’s Resource
Trending Recipe
Pizza Today - August 2017 - CT1
Pizza Today - August 2017 - CT2
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Pizza Today - August 2017
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Cover2
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Commentary
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 4
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 5
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Contents
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 7
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 8
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 9
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Contributors
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 11
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Expo Spotlight
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 13
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Interact
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 15
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Conversation
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 17
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Man on the Street
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 19
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Respecting the Craft
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 21
Pizza Today - August 2017 - On Tap
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 23
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Destinations
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 25
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Knead to Know
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 27
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 28
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 29
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Soda Machines
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 31
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 32
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 33
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Grilled Pizzas
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 35
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 36
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 37
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Entrée Salads
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 39
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Balsamic Vinegar
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 41
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 42
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 43
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Promoting Victories
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 45
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 46
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 47
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Road to Pizza & Pasta Northeast: It’s not too late to enter competitions
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 49
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 50
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 51
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 2017 Independent Pizzeria of the Year: Cane Rosso, Dallas, TX
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 53
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 54
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 55
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 56
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 57
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 58
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 59
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 60
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Product Showcase
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 62
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 63
Pizza Today - August 2017 - Pizza Today Yellow Pages
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 65
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 66
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 67
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 68
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 69
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 70
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 71
Pizza Today - August 2017 - The Marketplace
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 73
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 74
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 75
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 76
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 77
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 78
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 79
Pizza Today - August 2017 - 80
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