The Elements of Pizza: Unlocking the Secrets to World-Class Pies at Home

elements-of-pizzaRecipes by Ken Forkish

A follow-up to the James Beard and IACP award-winning book Flour Water Salt Yeast, featuring an unprecedented look into the mechanics of pizza-dough making, plus scores of recipes for pizzas in every style: Neapolitan, Roman, American pan pizza, New York-style, creative flat breads, gluten-free pizza, and more.

Ken Forkish is one of the most respected and trusted bread-baking authorities in the world. In The Elements of Pizza, Forkish turns his attention to pizza, offering readers a complete education on the craft of artisanal pizza-making, with techniques and insights from the very best pizzaiolos in Italy and the United States. Forkish’s methodical and rigorously tested dough recipes prove that even home bakers can make incredibly flavorful, texturally sublime crusts. And his inspired topping ideas will get you thinking outside of the cheese-and-pepperoni box, opening your eyes to the wide world of delicious, seasonal pizza.

EatDrinkFilms is thrilled to offer you two recipes from The Elements of Pizza, to be published April 19, 2016.

The Elements of Pizza can be pre-ordered at your local book store as well as from Indiebound and Amazon.

pizza-ovenElements of Pizza – FWSY Sauce/Vodka Sauce

This recipe from Flour Water Salt Yeast was called Smooth Red Sauce, and it’s flavored with olive oil, garlic, dried oregano, and chile flakes. I have adjusted that recipe here, removing the step of draining the tomatoes in a colander. The sauce will be thick enough provided you do not overmix it in the blender.

Use the best-quality dried oregano you can get; if you can find Calabrian oregano, all the better.

Makes 750 grams (3 cups), enough sauce for five

12-inch pizzas

  • vodka&sausage-pizza20 grams (1 1⁄2 tbs) extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, chopped
  • 8 grams (1 1⁄2 tsp) fine sea salt
  • 0.3 gram ( 1⁄4 tsp) dried oregano
  • 0.4 gram ( 1⁄4 tsp) chile flakes
  • 1 can (800-gram/28-oz) whole peeled tomatoes
  1. Put the olive oil, garlic, salt, oregano, and chile flakes in a blender. Add just a spoonful of tomatoes and blend briefly until the garlic and oil have emulsi- fied. Then add the rest of the tomatoes and blend very quickly, with brief pulses only, until all the ingre- dients are combined. Overblending releases water from the tomato pulp and makes the sauce too thin.
  2. Pour the sauce into a sealable container. I use a quart-sized deli container with a lid. Label the con- tainer with the date and refrigerate what you don’t use. It should keep for 1 week in the refrigerator.
  3. This sauce is designed for the Vodka Sauce and Sausage Pizza recipe on page 184, but it works well on a plain cheese pizza too, like the thin-crust vodka pizza at Rubirosa in New York City. Whether on pizza or pasta, this sauce goes nicely with shellfish, especially shrimp and lobster. The sauce needs to cook for quite some time for its flavors to blend and mellow. I think

30 minutes is fine, but you can go longer if you want; just keep an eye on it and add a few spoonfuls of water if you need to thin it out.

Watch a video of Ken Forkish making pizza.

EDF ForkVodka Sauce

MAKES 825 grams (3 1⁄3 cups), enough sauce for four 12-inch pizzas.

  • 14 pouring-oil-on-pizza75 grams ( 1⁄3 cup) vodka
  • 50 grams ( 1⁄4 cup) heavy cream
  • 750 grams (3 cups) FWSY Sauce (above)
  • 5 grams (1 tbs) grated Grana Padano or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  1. In a saucepan over medium-high heat, reduce the vodka until about 2 tablespoons remain, about 4 minutes. Pour in the cream and cook gently over low heat, stirring a few times, for 1 or 2 minutes.
  2. Add the sauce and cheese. Raise the heat to high for a few minutes, just until it starts to boil, then reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer, uncovered, for 30 minutes, keeping an eye on the sauce to prevent it from boiling rapidly.
  3. Set the sauce aside to cool, then pour it into a seal- able container. I use a quart-sized deli container with a lid. Label the container with the date and refrigerate what you don’t use. It should keep for 1 week in the refrigerator.

 

EDF Fork

Marguerita and Arugula Pizza, Two Ways

man-holding-pizzaThe three most popular pizzas on the menu at Ken’s Artisan Pizza (KAP) since we opened in 2006 have been Margherita, Margherita with Arugula, and Soppressata pizzas. For the Margherita with Arugula, we dress about 2 ounces of fresh arugula with a very thin coating of olive oil and a light sprinkling of sea salt, then top the pizza with the greens right after it comes out of the oven. The arugula has a peppery, slightly nutty, fresh green flavor and first-timers always raise their eyebrows at the big pile of greens on top of their pie (and I can read their thought bubble: “WTF, salad on my pizza?”). We offer arugula as an add-on to any one of the KAP pies, and in time the Soppressata pizza with added arugula has become a frequent insiders’ choice. Many people have been coming for years and order this every single time. We love these folks.

I like it best when I fold a slice of this pizza, envelop- ing the arugula. But you could have way more fun than that if you fold the entire pizza after dressing it with the arugula. Folding the pizza in half utterly changes the whole thing. The heat wilts the arugula and the pie stays hot for a long time, insulated by crust on both the top and the bottom. Folding it requires a large chef ’s knife or a mezzaluna to set the fold point across the middle of the crust, much like the perforation on a piece of paper. This recipe gives you the option of making either the straight-up Margherita with Arugula or the Soppressata version, folded or flat.

This one has fior di latte mozzarella on the pizza for the entire bake, giving it a molten-lava effect, which wilts the arugula beautifully. It’s a good way for you to see the difference in how cheese melts with a longer baking time compared with the alternative method of baking without the cheese for several minutes, then adding the cheese for the end of the bake.

margherita-arugulaMAKES one 12-inch pizza

  • 1 dough ball
  • 90 grams (1⁄3 cup) tomato sauce
  • 10 to 15 grams (scant 1⁄4 cup) grated Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 110 grams (3 1⁄2 oz) fresh mozzarella cheese (fior di latte), cut into pieces 1⁄4 to 1⁄2 inch thick, or thin strips
  • 15 to 18 thin slices soppressata, about 2 inches in diameter (optional)
  • 60 grams (2 oz) arugula
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 lemon wedge (optional)
  • Fine sea salt
  1. If you use a dough recipe that calls for refrigeration, remove your dough ball from the refrigerator about 60 to 90 minutes before baking pizza. Put your pizza steel or stone on an upper rack in your oven no more than 8 inches below the broiler. Preheat the oven to 550°F (290°C) for 45 minutes.
  2. Set up your pizza assembly station. Give yourself about 2 feet of width on the countertop. Moderately flour the work surface. Position your wooden peel next to the floured area and dust it lightly with flour. Have the sauce, cheeses, soppressata (if desired), and arugula at hand, with a ladle or large spoon for the sauce. Switch the oven to broil 10 minutes before loading the pizza.
  3. broccoli-pizza-back-coverTo shape the pizza, put the dough ball on the floured work surface, and flip to coat both sides moderately with flour. Use one of the shaping methods (Neapolitan or New York) shown on pages 92 to 95. Transfer the disk of pizza dough to the peel. Run your hands around the perimeter to relax it and work out the kinks.
  4. Spread the tomato sauce over the dough to within 1⁄2 inch of the edge, smoothing it with the back of the spoon or ladle. Sprinkle the grated hard cheese evenly over the sauce. Layer the sliced mozzarella evenly over the pizza. If you’re using the soppressata, evenly spread the slices over the cheese. Turn off the broiler, then gently slide the pizza onto the pizza stone. Close the oven door and change the oven setting to bake at 550°F (290°C). Bake for 5 minutes, until the rim is golden.
  5. While the pizza is baking, toss the arugula by hand in a mixing bowl with just enough olive oil to coat, a spritz of lemon if you like, and a light sprinkling of salt.
  6. Change the oven setting from bake to broil and let the pizza finish until the cheese is melted and the crust is golden with spots of brown and a few small spots of char, about 2 minutes (check it after 1 minute to be sure). Use tongs or a fork to slide the pizza from the pizza steel or stone onto a large plate. Immedi- ately after the pizza is removed from the oven, top it with the arugula. Serve sliced into quarters.

VARIATION To fold the pizza, top it with the dressed arugula and place it on a large cutting board. Set the fold point across the middle of the pizza with a large chef ’s knife or mezzaluna. Press the blade into the pizza, but do not cut all the way through; just go far enough so that when you fold the pizza, this fold point is established. Fold the pizza in half along the perforation you just made to make a half-moon shape. Cut the folded pizza in half, perpendicular to the fold line, and serve immediately.

guys-in-pizzeria


forkish-ken-photobyAlanWeinerKen Forkish is one of the most respected and trusted bread-baking authorities in the world. In The Elements of Pizza, Forkish turns his attention to pizza, offering readers a complete education on the craft of artisanal pizza-making, with techniques and insights from the very best pizzaiolos in Italy and the United States. Forkish’s methodical and rigorously tested dough recipes prove that even home bakers can make incredibly flavorful, texturally sublime crusts. And his inspired topping ideas will get you thinking outside of the cheese-and-pepperoni box, opening your eyes to the wide world of delicious, seasonal pizza.

square-pepperoni-back-coverAfter a twenty-year career in the tech industry, Ken Forkish decided to leave Silicon Valley and corporate America behind to become a baker. He moved to Portland, Oregon, and opened Ken’s Artisan Bakery in 2001, bringing the city its first taste of his particular style artisan bread. His talents went unrecognized until other chefs in town began talking about his bread. Word spread quickly and Ken now operates three highly respected yet distinctly different culinary businesses, Ken’s Artisan Pizza and Trifecta Tavern. Ken’s dedication to the artisan spirit of hand crafted, locally sourced and produced ingredients (with a few exceptions where superior quality can be found only in specific regions of the world) and attention to detail.

His first book, Flour Water Salt Yeast, won both a James Beard and IACP award.

Ken’s You Tube channel has a series of How-To videos on baking bread.

Ken Forkish talks about his Portland bakery.

Reprinted with permission from The Elements of Pizza, ©2016. Published by Ten Speed Press, an imprint of Penguin Random HouseLLC.

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